(LEAD) Online lenders report sharp increase in third-quarter net profit

(ATTN: RECASTS slug, headline, lead; UPDATES throughout with Kakao Bank earnings; REPLACES photo)

SEOUL, Nov. 2 (Yonhap) — South Korea’s internet-only banks said Tuesday their third-quarter profits rose sharply on robust customer and deposit growth.

K-Bank, controlled by a consortium of telecommunications giant KT Corp., Woori Bank and 19 other companies, saw third-quarter profits more than double from three months earlier.

Net profit was 16.8 billion won ($14.3 million) in the July-September period, compared with 3.9 billion won in the second quarter, K-Bank said in a filing. regulatory.

Three months earlier, K-Bank posted the first quarterly profit since its launch in April 2017, a sharp turnaround from a net loss of 12.3 billion won in the first quarter.

In the first nine months of the year, K-Bank posted a cumulative net income of 8.4 billion won, putting the lender on track for its first annual profit for 2021.

Later in the day, Kakao Bank, affiliated with Kakao Corp., the operator of the country’s dominant messaging app KakaoTalk, reported that its third-quarter net profit rose 28% year-on-year to $52 billion. of won.

Its year-to-date three-quarter net profit came in at a record 167.9 billion won, up 95% from a year ago, the company said in a filing. regulatory.

The good results of the two online banks were attributed to an increase in the number of customers and the amount of loan deposits.

The number of K-Bank customers stood at 6.6 million at the end of September, up from 2.19 million at the end of last year.

The number of Kakao Bank customers stood at 17.4 million at the end of September, compared to 15.44 million at the end of last year.

K-Bank customer deposits increased by 8.51 trillion won to 12.31 trillion won during the cited period, with outstanding loans increasing by 3.19 trillion won to 6.18 trillion. wons.

Kakao Bank’s customer deposits increased by 5.525 billion won to 29.065 billion won during the same period and outstanding loans increased by 4.725 billion won to 25.039 billion. wons.

In 2017, South Korea allowed the two internet-only banks to offer round-the-clock services in a bid to inject more competition into the banking industry. The third online lender Toss Bank began operations in early October.
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