We put much focus on the savings- and investment offering for our clients. Client deposits exceeded PLN 100 billion (up by 9.1% y/y). We increased the sales of investment products, mainly participation units of mutual funds and the products offered by our brokerage office.
Factoring and leasing remain important elements of our offer. We provide those services via our subsidiaries – ING Commercial Finance Polska and ING Lease (Polska) Sp. z o.o. ING Commercial Finance Polska was able to keep its leading position on the factoring market in Poland. The sales of that company totalled PLN 27.8 billion (+14% y/y) which gives it a 15.0% market share. ING Lease (Polska) also has a strong position on the leasing market with a market share of 5.5%. In 2017, sales amounted to PLN 3.7 billion, up by as much as 23.3% y/y.
Even though lending is growing dynamically, the quality of the credit portfolio does not suffer. As at the 2017 yearend, the share of impaired receivables was 2.8% (up by 0.2 p.p. year on year). The figure is visibly lower than the average in the sector which is 5.9%. The Group maintains an adequate liquidity- and capital position. Loan to deposit ratio went up to 83.8% (up by 2.3 p.p.), remaining at a safe level. As at 2017 yearend, the total capital ratio stood at 16.7% (an improvement by 2.0 p.p. y/y) and the Tier 1 ratio was 15.8% (an improvement by 2.1 p.p. y/y) – those figures are clearly above the required minimum.
Growing scale of business translates into better financial results of the Group. We continued our efforts to improve efficiency. Cost to income ratio dropped to 44.6% (an improvement by 3.9 p.p. y/y). Despite a large one-off deal worth nearly PLN 190 million in 2016, the Group was able to improve its net result in 2017 by 12.0% to an all-time high PLN 1,403.1 million. Upon eliminating one-off events from the 2016- and 2017 results, the net profit would improve by 25.6% year on year.
2017 saw a high economic growth; however, its structure was not satisfactory. On the one hand, 2017 saw a high share of consumption and inventories, and on the other hand, it saw a low share of private investments. In 2018, we expect the high GDP growth rate to continue along with a growing importance of investment projects. Good economic situation was conducive to trades on the Warsaw Stock Exchange. WIG index gained 23.2%, a WIG-Banking grew by 35.4%. The price of ING Bank Śląski S.A. shares exceeded the PLN 200 mark, and closed 2017 at PLN 205.6.
ING Bank Śląski S.A. Group is an organization which respects ING Values: integrity, prudence and accountability. It is our promise to the world around us. To one another, we also promise to abide by ING Behaviours (You take it on and make it happen, You help others to be successful and You are always a step ahead). We shared our experience in that area during the Open Eyes Economy Summit, an international congress on value economy. For the eighth time we were honoured with the Top Employers Poland certificate which proves that we achieve the highest standards as employer. For the eleventh time the Bank was included in the stock exchange index of socially responsible companies: RESPECT Index. Our bank is among the eight companies – and is the only company from the finance industry – that have been continuously present in the RESPECT Index since its very beginning. We were also named the Leader in Business Ethics during the Responsible Business Awards Gala.
Looking forward, I have no doubt that the Group is well prepared to embrace the changes in the regulatory environment and competitive challenges, both in terms of capital- and liquidity position as well as in organisational terms. We want to be a trusted partner for our clients and build long-standing relationships with them. We will provide cutting edge and innovative products and services in response to technology development and the changing needs of our clients. I am convinced that this will help us welcome more clients and increase their satisfaction levels. This approach underpins further growth of the Group in key areas of focus.