YEAR-END REPORT NORDAX GROUP AB 2017

JANUARY-DECEMBER 2017

Numbers compared to January-December 2016

  • The loan portfolio grew by 5%, in constant currencies by 7%
  • The net interest margin decreased to 9.1% (9.3%)
  • Total operating income increased to 1,189 MSEK (1,176). Adjusted total operating income increased to 1,207 MSEK (1,113)
  • Adjusted cost to income ratio (rolling 12 months) improved to 25.8% (27.3%)
  • Operating profit decreased to 529 MSEK (573). Adjusted operating profit increased by 10% to 559 MSEK (510)
  • Net profit decreased to 409 MSEK (446)
  • Earnings per share were 3.69 SEK (4.02). Adjusted earnings per share were 3.90 SEK (3.59)
  • Capitalisation was strengthened and the total capital ratio increased to 16.7% (16.0% as of 31 December) while the Common Equity Tier 1 capital ratio increased to 14.7% (14.0%)
  • The Board of Directors proposes an ordinary dividend of 1.60 SEK per share (1.60) and a special dividend of 0.40 SEK per share.

4th QUARTER 2017

Numbers compared with 4th quarter 2016

  • The loan portfolio grew by 5%, in constant currencies by 7%
  • The net interest margin decreased to 9.0% (9.3%)
  • Total operating income increased to 297 MSEK (294). Adjusted total operating income increased to 306 MSEK (301)                                                                        
  • Operating profit decreased to 126 MSEK (140). Adjusted operating profit decreased by 8% to 138 MSEK (150) 
  • Net profit decreased to 98 MSEK (110)
  • Earnings per share were 0.88 SEK (0.99). Adjusted earnings per share amounted to 0.97 SEK (1.05)

CEO COMMENT 

Initiatives to expand the business and increase growth

2017 was an eventful and challenging year for Nordax. Return on equity amounted to 18%. Underlying profit increased, but earnings and lending growth were lower than recent years. On the positive side, our customers are more satisfied with our service and employee engagement is rising. We have begun a process of operational changes and digitisation that will benefit our customers and we became more efficient in all areas of the business. We formalised our sustainability work and made progress within all focus areas which is of great importance for us as a company. During the year we also took the important decision to widen our product offering.

During the year, total lending grew 7 percent, but at a slower rate in the second half of the year. The largest growth engine during the year was Finland. A brighter outlook for the Finnish economy, improved customer processes, more efficient marketing and joining the Finnish debt register all contributed positively. Finland is an attractive market for future growth. We continue to have a positive view on the Swedish market in spite of the slowdown we saw in the second half of 2017. Germany reported a good growth rate, but is still a relatively small market for us. We have continued to take a cautious approach in our largest market, Norway, where competition remains fierce.

We are launching several initiatives to support long-term growth whilst keeping our focus on sound credit quality in our portfolio. After application volumes dropped in Sweden in the second half of the year, we are updating and improving our data sources to be more effective in our direct marketing. In the first half of 2018, we will gradually be launching improved and smoother digital onboarding processes in our Nordic markets to increase the conversion from application to paid out loans. We are modernising and broadening our marketing in digital channels. We also see a need to invest in the Nordax brand and set out a clearer position in the market, which will help us in all channels.

Our lending in Germany is growing steadily and we are becoming more efficient in our marketing, but overall growth and profitability levels have not reached our ambitions. There is a lot of potential for improvement in on-boarding process and by broadening distribution. In 2018, we start a cooperation with an external partner with an established platform to digitise and improve the application flow. This will make us more competitive, increase scalability and not least pave the way for enhanced distribution in Germany.

The first step in Nordax broader product strategy is to launch mortgages in Sweden. Preparations are progressing and the organisation has been bolstered by recruiting several key people with broad experience working with mortgages. Operational processes to handle mortgages have been set up, staff have undertaken mortgage certifications and marketing channels have been prepared. The potential for profitable growth in our identified niche of the market is very good and there is underlying growth partly driven by the so-called gig economy, for people in-non conventional forms of employment versus traditional full-time roles with one employer. With the large banks becoming more automated and standardised, many customers don’t fit in. Being smaller and quicker, we see an opportunity to create value by better meeting these individuals needs by combining a good service offer with personal contact in the process. Our mortgage business will over time enable a higher lending growth rate, contribute to more stable earnings, reduce credit risk and providing Nordax with an exciting new leg to the business.    

Our ambition is to increase efficiency in order to be more competitive and improve our services. In 2017, the pace of digitisation and change were faster than ever before. Our IT department has grown considerably in the last year, but our underlying costs have remained stable because we are finding efficiencies elsewhere. Our adjusted cost to income ratio improved to 25.8 (27.3). Digitisation and increased efficiency will continue to be a high priority for us.

The Board of Directors proposes an increase in the dividend to a total of 2.00 SEK (1.60) per share. The distribution is divided into an ordinary dividend of 1.60 SEK per share pursuant to our dividend policy and a special dividend of 0.40 SEK per share made possible by our strong capital position. As previously announced, we are reassessing the strategy for how we hedge foreign exchange risk in our capital adequacy position and how we will manage our portfolio of non-performing loans in the future. This could potentially improve our capital position further.

I would like to thank my colleagues for all the hard work in 2017. Together we have a number of good initiatives that will enable long-term growth and profitability.

Jacob Lundblad

CEO

For more information, please contact

Jacob Lundblad, CEO, +46 8 690 18 32, jacob.lundblad@nordax.se

Lennart Erlandson, CFO, +46 8 690 14 84, lennart.erlandson@nordax.se

Andreas Frid, Head of Investor relations, +46 705 29 08 00, andreas.frid@nordax.se

Media, analysts and investors are welcome to take part in a conference call on 8 February at 10.00am CET. CEO Jacob Lundblad and CFO Lennart Erlandson will present the results. After the presentation there will be a Q&A session.

Call-in numbers: Sweden: +46 8 566 426 63

UK: +44 203 008 98 09

USA: +1 855 831 59 45

Link to audiocast:

https://tv.streamfabriken.com/nordax-q4-2017

You can also follow the presentation on:

https://www.nordaxgroup.com/en/investors/financial-reports/presentations/

For more information about Nordax’s customer offerings, read more on each country’s web site: www.nordax.se, www.nordax.no, www.nordax.fi, and www.nordax.de.

This information is information that Nordax Group AB is obliged to make public pursuant to the EU Market Abuse Regulation. The information was submitted for publication, through the agency of the contact person set out above, at 07.30 CET on February 8, 2018.

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