Dear Shareholders and Members of the Board;
Although we spent the first half of 2021 with full lockdown under pandemic conditions, we closed this period with promising developments thanks to the studies on health and the start of the rapid vaccination program.
As of 1 July 2021, we entered a very fast recovery period with the implementation of vaccination to all our citizens over the age of 18 and the realization of economic and social opening. We continued to maintain our steady growth in the first 6 months of 2021.
As of 30 June 2021, the total assets of QNB Finansbank increased by 14 percent, compared to the end of 2020, reaching TL 258 billion 997 million. In the same period, net loans grew by 13 percent to TL 157 billion 415 million, while customer deposits increased by 20 percent to TL 150 billion 915 million. Within the first 6 months of 2021, the Bank's net profit increased by 11 percent compared to the same period of the last year, and reached TL 1 billion 410 million.
As had been the case for the last 18 months, we prioritized the protection of the health of our employees and customers in the first 6 months of 2021, and we accelerated our efforts aimed at supporting the economic growth and the real sector.
We continued our support to the real sector without slowing down, with KOSGEB loans, "back to work" loans with no principal payments for 9 months, and interest-free loan options worth TL 20 thousand. Thanks to the Digital Bridge, we enabled many services to support the technological infrastructure of SMEs to quickly adapt to the new digital age.
In this period, we launched the digital intelligence Q, which will be the future of the banking sector and will touch the entire financial life of retail customers by QNB Finansbank. Q enables the banking to reach a new technological dimension.
In May, we increased and renewed our syndicated loan and obtained a total of USD 335 million financing from international banks. With this transaction, which was carried out based on sustainability performance criteria, QNB Finansbank added a new one to its efforts for sustainable development. And in June, our Bank issued its first green bond by EBRD. The Bank's first green bond issuance of USD 50 million is also the EBRD's first green bond investment in a bank in Turkey.
At QNB Finansbank, we made a difference in the first half of 2021 with our digital investments and efforts. Our strength in this area now stands out both in corporate and personal banking.
Our Digital Bridge platform ranked among the top 10 banks worldwide under the "Top Innovations in Corporate Finance" category within the scope of Global Finance "The Innovators 2021". 'Mono' application, one of the first term winners of the idea camp of QNB Finansbank's in-house entrepreneurship program QNBEYOND, was awarded the "Best Mobile Application of the Year" under "Software as a Service" category at the IDC Cloud Technologies summit by senior executives of the IT industry.
In addition to our banking activities and our contributions to the economy, we fulfill our responsibilities for a sustainable world. We continue our efforts to contribute to the future of our children under the Small Hands Big Dreams ("Minik Eller Büyük Hayaller") platform.
I would like to thank our devoted employees, supportive customers, and all our strategic business partners and correspondent banks for their efforts in these challenging period.