BlueOrange successfully concludes the year 2018 and continues dynamic development
February 28, 2019
According to non-audited data, the year 2018 was closed with EUR 7.4 million in earnings. The Bank’s income during the reporting period amounted to EUR 31.1 million. The Bank's equity reached EUR 66 million, which is a 10% increase compared to the last year. At the end of 2018, the Bank's total assets (incl. assets under management) amounted to EUR 648 million.
“The business model previously selected by BlueOrange proved to be successful in the past period. The Bank has developed dynamically by following the requirements of the financial market. The Bank's income structure has changed significantly, leading to an increase in profit. Two key aspects enabled positive balance — increase of lending income by more than 30% and significant reduction in administrative expenditure. We start the year 2019 with clear objectives and a strong position,” notes Dmitrijs Latisevs, the Chairman of the Board of BlueOrange.
One of the Bank's main business priorities in 2018 was servicing and crediting of companies and individuals in Latvia, which is evidenced by the increase in crediting volume of BlueOrange — the total amount of credit portfolio and issued loans reached EUR 264 million at the end of the year, which is 20% more than the last year. Of the total amount of loans, 73% were issued for the support of small and medium-sized enterprises, thus contributing to the growth of local companies, production volumes, export and the economy of Latvia as a whole. In total, in 2018, new loans were issued in the amount of EUR 153 million, with lending income increasing by 33%.
In the view of the changes in the financial market requirements and the introduction of the Bank's new business model, qualitative changes in the client base were achieved — over the past year the process of reducing the share of clients from high-risk countries was finalised, while the number of customers from Latvia, the Baltic States and Europe increased significantly, reaching 90% of the total number of customers. Over the past year, more than ten thousand companies and individuals became clients of BlueOrange.
In the last year, BlueOrange became the first online bank in Latvia, entitled to attract customers using remote customer identification tools. The new opportunities allowed the Bank to easily acquire and serve customers in remote areas of Latvia, as well as residents of Latvia in foreign countries, which was not possible before.
Moreover, BlueOrange as the first bank in Latvia installed five full-featured contactless card ATMs in 2018, highlighting yet another technology innovation in financial services industry.
Over the past year, the Bank's technological development has continued by expanding online banking functionality through the automation of internal business processes. To broaden its range of services by offering simple technological solutions for small and medium-sized enterprises, BlueOrange introduced e-invoicing, and is the first bank in Latvia to offer its customers such service capabilities.
The Bank's activities are constantly focused on reducing risks and raising banking security standards by improving internal control systems and processes in line with the changes in the customer base and changing regulatory requirements. By investing 600 th. euro, two major IT projects were completed in 2018 — two automised systems were introduced in the area of operational compliance, providing a new approach to client risk assessment, thereby improving the internal control in compliance with the requirements of current international standards allowing even more effective monitoring of Bank client transactions.
In expanding its range of services, the Bank opened a modern and advanced deposit-box storage for its customers at the end of 2018, which is the largest in the Baltic States, in terms of the number and size of deposit-boxes. Cooperation with Fintech companies also started in the past year and will be continued in 2019 with a view to extending crediting services as well to European countries.
Over the past year, all necessary preparations were made to enable the Bank to start offering online opening of customer accounts for trading in the CFD and Forex currency markets at the very beginning of 2019, thus the Bank was the first bank in Latvia to offer this service also to individuals outside Latvia — residents of the European Economic Area and Switzerland.
In 2019, BlueOrange will continue its ongoing support programme for small and medium-sized enterprises, at the same time developing as a financial-technology company that provides an extended scope of services to its clients, also online.