Belfast Telegraph

Danske Bank posts £65m profits for first six months of the year

By John Mulgrew

Danske Bank has posted pre-tax profits of £65m for the first six months of the year.

That's up from £37.4m a year before, and includes things such as writebacks, with cash clawed back from loan impairments.

The bank's general operating profits also rose by almost a third to £42.6m, up from £33.2m.

It comes after Danske posted record pre-tax profits of £117.5m in 2014, in a year which saw it close an additional seven branches in a cost-cutting bid.

Danske's deputy chief executive Kevin Kingston said the bank had witnessed a significant upsurge in its business banking arm.

“The big message for me is the uplift in the lending,” he said.

“It is a genuinely encouraging message for us and the whole economy as well.

“On the business side we have lent as much money as we did in the whole of 2014, and that's a dramatic increase.”

Danske Bank topped this year's Belfast Telegraph Top 100 Companies list of firms in Northern Ireland.

The bank's chief executive Gerry Mallon said the “performance of the business continues to significantly improve with income up on the same period last year and a continued focus on expenditure”.

“The first half of the year has been a particularly strong one for Business Banking. We have already provided more new lending to business customers in 2015 than we did in the whole of 2014.

“This is down to an encouraging increase in demand for lending from our existing customers after a long spell of relatively subdued demand and the continued acquisition of new to bank customers.

“In business banking we have been very successful with customer acquisition from our competitors in recent years and this has led to us gaining a stronger share of the local business market.

“Customer retention continues to be a key focus from our team of relationship managers and this year we have put additional measures in place to ensure we are giving our customers the best possible service across all areas of business banking. As the economy continues to grow we will continue to have both the appetite and capacity to meet the expected increased demand for support.”

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