The Company’s General Assembly approves the financial statements for 2018 and the Board of Directors’ recommendation to distribute cash dividends representing 8% of the paid up share capital.
Al Ameeri: We look forward to the future with confidence and optimism to achieve the best results in the coming years.
- Our financial position is strong and we are flexible in coping with all circumstances.
Al-Mukhaizeem: The Company’s leadership in wealth and asset management is prominent.
- We follow the highest standards of accuracy, governance, and risk management to protect shareholders’ assets and funds.
- We adopt effective and sustainable strategies and practices that are accurate, rigorous, and seize opportunities.
National Investments Company’s General Assembly approved the Board of Directors’ recommendation to distribute cash dividends representing 8% of the paid up share capital.
The Chairman, Mr. Hamad Ahmed Al Ameeri said on this occasion: “we look forward to the future with confidence and hope for further success and prosperity. We are confident that National Investments Company (NIC) will continue to strive to maintain its position, enhance its leadership role, and upgrade its skills and capabilities to ensure a lasting excellence in performance level”.
He added, “The past year witnessed major challenges at the local and global levels, with negative effects on most of the economic and investment sectors. In spite of all these challenges and difficulties, the Board of Directors and the Executive Management continue to maintain their prudent policy based on the balance between expenses and revenues and the acquisition of risk-adjusted investment opportunities, in line with the strategy set by the Board of Directors. The professional implementation of the Executive Management of these directives reflected the strength of the financial position of the Company, which is able to cope with the changes in the economic environment, and fortified to absorb the instability of the economic conditions.
In respect of financial results, the total assets of the Company amounted to KD 197.279 million compared to KD 193.595 million in 2017, an increase of 1.9%. The total equity attributable to the equity holders of the Parent Company increased by 2.1% to KD 177.526 million at the end of 2018 compared to KD 173.912 million at the end of 2017. Net profit amounted to KD 7.365 million and other comprehensive income to KD 2.830 million both attributable to shareholders of the Parent Company. Total comprehensive income for the year amounted to KD 10.456 million, an increase of 9.78% compared to KD 9.524 million during the previous year. Total income amounted to KD 15.336 million, a decrease of 26% compared to KD 20.839 million at the end of 2017. Total expenses decreased by 25% to KD 7.327 million at the end of 2018 from KD 9.828 million at the end of 2017. Earnings per share stood at 9 fils per share compared to 12 fils per share at the end of 2017.
Al Ameeri stated that the Board of Directors recommended to increase the cash dividends distribution of the paid up share capital to 8% this year of 8 fils per share or KD 6.383 million, which reflects the strength and safety of the Company’s financial position, as well as its solid investment fundamentals and stable tributaries. The most prominent of these is the MENA Securities Sector, which is one of the main revenue streams of the Company, and has managed to maintain its leadership through the outstanding performance of its products.
He added, “Our investment funds managed to outperform their benchmark returns in 2018. During the year, Al Wataniya Investment Fund, which invests in Kuwaiti listed equities on the Boursa Kuwait, achieved a return of 8.35% outperforming its benchmark return of 5.23%, with the net asset value of the fund reaching KWD 124.8 million. Mawarid Industrial and Petroleum Services Fund, which invests in Shari’a compliant local and Arab equities, achieved during the year a return of 6.61% outperforming its benchmark return of 0.66%. Similarly, Zajil Services and Telecommunications Fund, which invests in Shari’a compliant local and Arab equities, achieved during the year a return of 6.33% outperforming its benchmark return of 1.11%. Al Darij Investment Fund, which invests in Shari’a compliant GCC equities, achieved during the year a return of 5.66% outperforming its benchmark return of 1.67%. Al Mada Investment Fund, which invests in Shari’a compliant GCC equities, achieved during the year a return of 4.39% outperforming its benchmark return of 4.13%”.
Mr. Fahad Al-Mukhaizeem, CEO of National Investments Company, said: “The excellent performance of our investment funds during 2018 reflects the company’s success in adopting effective and sustainable investment strategies that are capable of applying accurate and rigorous business practices and techniques, and capturing investment opportunities that involve growth potential and outstanding financial returns, making our investment funds outperform their peers in the market. Our company won three awards: the first from Global Business Outlook as the ‘Best Fund Management Company in Kuwait for 2018’, the second from the International Finance magazine as the ‘Fastest Growing Fund Management Company in Kuwait for 2018’, and the third award is from the MENA Fund Manager Magazine as the ‘Best Asset Manager in Kuwait for 2018’. This recognition and appreciation highlight the successful record and outstanding performance of the Company in managing its investment funds. With the due performance of these investment products, NIC persistently adopts the principle of sharing its successes and achievements with shareholders. The Company is proud to distribute a record cash dividend to the unit holders in these funds for 2018 performance, the largest being Al Wataniya Investment Fund, whose cash dividends exceed KD 10 million and a current yield of more than 8% on the profits of 2018. Therefore, we can say that our investment products are attractive investment opportunities for investors looking for capital increase or regular profit over a long-term investment horizon, even in light of the rapid and successive changes in the world of money markets”.
Mr. Al-Mukhaizeem added that the Investment Banking Sector is primarily responsible for managing NIC’s unquoted investments in the local, regional, and international markets. The Sector aims to achieve high rates of return whilst maintaining a diverse portfolio and focusing on capital appreciation and current income. As always, the Sector generated fee income from its advisory services while simultaneously diversely investing funds and efficiently utilizing available resources to optimize returns on investment for NIC’s shareholders.
He noted that the Investment Banking Sector achieved an exceptional profit mainly attributable to profits from the sale of investments, dividends, and profits from associates and subsidiaries, as well as financial advisory services. The Sector successfully exited three local and international investments, achieving total revenues of KD 3.07 million.
Al-Mukhaizeem pointed out that the sector maintained its regular revenues through its financial advisory services and its customer service in various banking activities such as the acquisition management of companies listed on Boursa Kuwait.
He declared that there were several acquisitions in 2018, with operations amounting to nearly USD 20 million, adding “The Investment Banking Sector has utilized its available liquidity towards diversifying its investments with the international investment firms specialized in the fields of financial services, real estate, energy and transport, as well as investment in the education sector”.
Al-Mukhaizeem also revealed that during 2018, the Wealth Management Sector (WMS) continued to restructure the potential of the sector and has made remarkable progress in reconciling the portfolios of customers and funds’ unitholders in line with the requirements of the Capital Markets Authority (CMA) and its Executive Bylaws. WMS made great efforts in collecting and updating customers’ data and supporting documents. The conformity of investment portfolio positions has already been completed to meet CMA requirements. Nevertheless, WMS played a key role in updating the new computer system in customer service and their portfolios. The content of the periodic reports has been updated to conform to all CMA requirements. These reports feature high transparency and accuracy. With the completion of the digital transformation process, these reports are automatically sent in lieu of the traditional format so that they are available immediately after issuance and without any delay.
He added that the Wealth Management Sector played a pivotal role in facilitating the transactions and acquisitions during the year. The sector was characterized by professionalism in the acquisitions that took place during a record period. It also attracted many new customers to invest in the Company’s various investment products. In recognition of this success, the Company has been able to win prestigious international and regional awards.
In terms of the real estate portfolio of the Company, Mr. Al-Mukhaizeem said: “We are looking forward in 2019 to proceed with the development and rehabilitation of some properties and the sale of other properties to enhance the portfolio and achieve the highest rate of profitability, as well as expanding the management of third party portfolios and providing professional advice and services”.
Prudent risk management
Mr. Al-Mukhaizeem pointed out that National Investments Company has designed an integrated risk management framework that includes all potential risks such as market risk, liquidity, operations, financial, strategic, management, and other risks.
He emphasized that NIC has an integrated system of risk management policies, limits, processes and procedures that are constantly updated to conform to the company’s strategy, market forces, and CMA instructions.
National Investments Company works in tandem to protect shareholders’ rights, starting with ethical institutional work, a strict regulatory framework, investor relations unit, transparency, and disclosure in the announcement of information through Boursa Kuwait and NIC’s official website.