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Atlas Mara targets better 2017 as FY'16 profit dips YOY

Atlas Mara Ltd., the company co-founded by ex-Barclays Plc CEO Bob Diamond to invest in sub-Saharan African banks, reported 2016 attributable net profit of $8.4 million, down from $11.3 million a year earlier.

EPS dropped year over year to 12 cents from 16 cents.

Net interest income amounted to $127.2 million in 2016, up from $106.4 million the previous year. Fees and commissions dropped to $48.9 million from $56.6 million in 2015, while net income from derivative and foreign exchange transactions increased year over year to $35.9 million from $16.8 million.

Atlas Mara booked a $15.4 million loan impairment charge in 2016, compared to the year-ago charge of $12.0 million, largely due to lower recoveries. M&A transaction expenses narrowed to $8.8 million from $11.9 million, while reorganization and restructuring costs increased to $8.9 million from $7.6 million.

Reported ROE reached 1.6%, compared to 1.7% in 2015.

"While 2017 will have its challenges, we expect to deliver a significant improvement in earnings relative to 2016 as we execute on our cost savings and revenue growth plans," Diamond said. Atlas Mara is aiming to double its earnings year over year in 2017.