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Group CEO's Message

Annual Report

“During 2021, FAB was able to deliver a strong performance and capitalise on the significant opportunities presented by the economic rebound. We also made tangible progress in driving growth and transformation, delivering a host of market-leading products and services for our growing client base, and improving customer experience”

I am pleased to report that FAB delivered a year of exceptional performance in 2021, achieving record revenue and net profit, and accomplishing an historic milestone with total assets in excess of AED 1 trillion.

Full-year net profits for the Group increased by 19% year-on-year to AED 12.5 billion, whilst revenue grew by 17% to reach AED 21.7 billion, and the Bank’s balance sheet remained strong across all key ratios throughout the year. This highly encouraging performance was driven by a solid momentum and growth sustained across our core businesses, as well as the successful delivery of strategic initiatives to unlock value, drive growth and enhance innovation.

Throughout the year, we demonstrated a unique ability to support clients with market-leading advice, solutions and deal execution, helping them to capitalise on the significant opportunities in the UAE and the wider region. Our successes were further driven by significant progress in our Group-wide digital transformation strategy, in which we successfully delivered improved self-service capabilities, innovative payment platforms, and increased digital adoption – particularly in transactions and customer onboarding.

FAB continued to expand in our targeted markets and grow our international franchise, with 2021 marking the completion of the Group’s first international acquisition of Bank Audi Egypt. We also received regulatory approval to establish our first branch in Shanghai which is slated to commence operations in the first quarter of 2022.

A strong basis for continued growth

Our record performance in 2021 was built on robust foundations in terms of liquidity, funding and capital, underlined by the reaffirmation of our AA- credit rating and stable outlook from S&P, which reflect our strong balance sheet fundamentals and risk profile.

FAB’s Investment Banking business delivered a particularly strong performance, originating and structuring a number of landmark transactions, and leading new offerings and company listings on the Abu Dhabi Stock Exchange in a record year for equity markets. This resulted in a 69% growth in Investment Banking revenue compared to 2020, primarily driven by the significant growth in non-interest income reflecting exceptional trading gains and buoyant regional capital markets activity.

Our Corporate and Commercial Banking business produced a resilient performance despite headwinds from competition and a low interest rate environment, delivering 9% growth in both loans and deposits, with CASA balances growing by 27%.

Consumer Banking focused on enhancing its product offerings and partnerships to drive customer acquisition, growing deposits by 6% and loans by 5% respectively year-on-year, while continuing to improve digital capabilities and customer experience.

Meanwhile, Global Private Banking generated solid growth driven by its discretionary portfolio and investment advisory offerings, signing a number of high-profile new mandates and increasing AUMs significantly during the year.

It was also a momentous year for FAB’s international operations, with revenue growth of 26% year-on-year, driven by the Bank Audi Egypt acquisition and through enhancement of our MENA business contribution to 52% of total international revenue in 2021 from 39% in 2020.

“During 2021, FAB was able to deliver a strong performance and capitalise on the significant opportunities presented by the economic rebound. We also made tangible progress in driving growth and transformation, delivering a host of market-leading products and services for our growing client base, and improving customer experience”

Annual Report

Leading the Green transition

FAB is committed to supporting the UAE’s bold Net-Zero by 2050 Strategic Initiative, which charts a compelling pathway to a carbon neutral future, presenting the potential to drive significant economic growth, inspire new innovations and deliver positive change for generations to come.

In 2021, we became the first GCC bank to join the Net Zero Banking Alliance (NZBA), and also achieved a MSCI ESG rating upgrade to AA, confirming our global leadership in the space.

With a new target to finance or facilitate USD 75 billion of sustainable finance projects by 2030, we further underscore our role as a key enabler for the regional sustainable finance agenda and a proactive partner to our customers and communities as we work together to deliver sustainable growth.

Paving the way for the bank of the future

Looking ahead, we commence 2022 by leveraging the robust foundation achieved in the past year to support continued growth across our businesses, creating new opportunities across the UAE and the region to deliver sustainable value for our shareholders, customers and communities.

We will maintain the momentum of our Investment Banking achievements by driving further specialisation in the coming year, as we accentuate our regional leadership in the segment, while also intensifying our focus on the delivery of innovative solutions to boost trade and supply chain finance through our Corporate and Commercial Banking business.

At the heart of our approach in 2022 will be our commitment to deepening our customer relationships. In Consumer Banking, FAB will leverage its digital services to deliver enhanced value and customer journeys. We also aim to further strengthen our onshore and offshore wealth management advisory services for Private Banking clients, while also growing our International franchise in key target markets by developing expanded capabilities to improve our client offering.

We will continue to attract and nurture talent, building capabilities and capacity to drive our continued growth, while investing in our ongoing digital transformation to create further efficiencies and agility across the organisation.

We are proud of our position as a regional ESG champion, and aim to further strengthen this role by driving forward our sustainability agenda in line with the shared vision of the UAE and the international community.

Our valued stakeholders

I would like to thank all of our stakeholders for their support in what has been a challenging yet rewarding year for FAB in 2021.

In particular, I would like to thank our Board members for their support and oversight and to the UAE Central Bank and regulatory authorities for their significant guidance for our industry throughout the pandemic.

I also wish to express my appreciation to our customers, shareholders and community partners for their continued trust in the Bank’s ability to deliver sustainable value and returns.

Special thanks are also due to our dedicated employees across the Bank, whose resilience and commitment have led to FAB’s exceptional success and laid strong foundations for continued progress in the coming year.

Hana Al Rostamani
Group Chief Executive Officer


First Abu Dhabi Bank

First Abu Dhabi Bank P.J.S.C

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