BENGALURU, July 26 (Reuters) – Indian non-bank lender Bajaj Finance (BJFN.NS) reported a bigger-than-expected increase in quarterly profit on Wednesday, boosted by healthy loan growth and strong customer additions.
The company’s consolidated profit after tax rose a little over 32% to 34.37 billion rupees ($419 million) in the first quarter, beating analysts’ average estimate of 33.24 billion rupees, according to Refinitiv data.
Bajaj Finance had already reported its new loan bookings grew 34% year-on-year in the quarter, while its deposits book jumped 46%, both rising more than they did in the previous quarter.
Net interest income, the difference between interest earned on loans and paid on deposits, rose 26% to 83.98 billion rupees in the June-quarter, while interest income jumped nearly 37% year-on-year.
The company’s asset quality also improved, with gross non-performing assets as a percentage of total loans improving to 0.87% at the end of June, from 0.94% at the end of March.
Despite April-June being a slow period historically for lenders, non-banking financial companies, or NBFCs, are expected to have benefited this time around from the robust momentum of strong disbursement activity in the previous quarter.
Last week, L&T Financial Holdings (LTFH.NS) said its June-quarter profit doubled. Shriram Finance (SHMF.NS) and SBI Cards and Payment Services (SBIC.NS) will report their earnings later this week.
Bajaj Finance added 3.84 million new customers from April to June, its highest for any quarter ever.
Its assets under management (AUM) – the market value of the lender’s assets – rose 9% sequentially to 499 billion rupees.
Bajaj Finance shares were up 0.6% on the day. They climbed over 25% in April-June, outpacing a 10.5% climb in the benchmark Nifty 50 (.NSEI) index.
($1 = 82.0050 Indian rupees)
Reporting by Varun Vyas in Bengaluru; Editing by Savio D’Souza
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