DIB is now a member of the billion dollar profits club… What are your ambitions for DIB in the short term and in the long term?
We want to keep it very simple. I say this with all modesty and humility, a billion dollars is just a number. It was not an aspiration that we always wanted to go into the billion-dollar club. We are not trying to follow the market or emulate anyone else’s success. We are trying to be better than what we were yesterday. Having seen exponential growth and success over the last four years the challenge is going to be to keep up that pace.
What’s next? We have embarked on our growth ambitions, we are not taking a step back, there’s no sabbatical. We want to make sure we continue to put the right foot forward both domestically and internationally. The markets we operate in now, in addition to the UAE are quite challenging. We have to make sure we find the right way of replicating the successful strategy.
I think a billion dollars is just a start. It makes shareholders happy, the bank is stronger. This is a billion dollars in quality. There are no one-offs. We are talking about core growth of the bank, which is how an analyst would look at it.
If you look at the key metrics of the institution, we are looking at ROEs and ROAs that shareholders look at, NIMs that analysts look at. We look at sheer size, we have become a billion-dollar bank, very close to AED 200 billion of balance sheet size. It is a bank that has caught everybody’s attention. I hope we will be able to keep up that good work, we have got to make sure that we engage with all stakeholders. It is not just about profits but also customers and customer service, making sure the regulator is happy, making sure the ratings agencies, research analysts and shareholders are happy with what they get from the bank. We have been blessed with wonderful direction we have from the board of directors and I am very fortunate that I have a fantastic team behind me that has made this billion dollar profit possible.