FIMbank, the international bank that specializes in trade financing, is celebrating its 25 anniversary in Malta, with its management saying that it found a solid base in Malta to grow and spread its services. Between January and June this year, the bank registered a record profit of just under nine million euro (€8.65m).
FIMbank group chief executive, Murali Subramanian, said that the profit represents a significant increase of 38% compared with the first six months of 2018.
“We have achieved a result that surpasses that of last year and of any other year at FIMBank, we’ve had a very successful first half of 2019 which was driven by a number of businesses; our forfeiting business in the UK performed extremely well as did our treasure and assets and liability businesses”.
FIMbank chairman, Dr John C Grech, said that the original shareholders of the bank had chosen Malta for three reasons: an established banking sector with trained people, a desired timezone and jurisdiction, and respected regulators who throughout the years, assisted the bank to enlarge its base and spread its services with offices in the United States, Brazil, Russia, Egypt, Singapore, India, Dubai, Greece, Germany, France and the United Kingdom.
“When the bank was established in Malta the intention always was to be an international bank, that is the site in Malta however not the work; effectively the bank is a trade finance institution that finances commerce, therefore its work is international however it found its ground where the roots are good”.
Dr Grech added that the prospects in Malta are good, even if it specialisation nature offers challenges that the bank, sometimes, has to address with hard decisions. “The principal challenge is always how to manage risks due to our type of work; risk is complex and not small”.
The bank’s chief executive added that in a somewhat cloudy banking and economic climate, especially in Europe, the group works with the American dollar and is managing to exploit the opportunities of new markets while remaining on guard for risks.
Murali Subramanian stated, “it’s only prudent for FIMBank to calibrate what we do in all these markets and how we manage them as a portfolio and that has meant that in some commodity sectors like metals, agri and in some geographies like North Africa we have tended to lower the appetite that we wish to extend “.
This is the fourth consecutive year that the group achieved positive results, with FIMbank’s chairperson saying that the principal shareholders from Kuwait were crucial to the strengthening of the bank, who he said revived it to continue growing.