TD is focused on the current—and future—prosperity of Canada, TD Bank Group President and Chief Executive Officer Bharat Masrani told the Bank's Annual Meeting of Shareholders (AMS) in Toronto on Thursday.
During his address to shareholders at the Design Exchange in Toronto on Thursday, Masrani focused on the Bank's performance, its strategy for 2023 and beyond, and its progress on Environment Sustainability and Governance (ESG) initiatives. Masrani also took the opportunity to illustrate the important collaborative role banks can play in charting the future of Canada's economy.
Here are five key takeaways from Masrani's remarks at the AMS.
TD continues to post strong organic and customer-focused growth in a challenging environment
As he recapped some of the highlights for TD over the past year, Masrani told the audience that in a world that is constantly evolving, the Bank's strength and resilience remained constant.
"Since we last met a year ago, TD has continued to welcome new customers, generate capital, expand our businesses, and grow," Masrani said. "As a result, TD's 2022 earnings reached $15.4-billion on an adjusted basis, a five per cent increase from 2021."
Masrani's comments focused on the growth of Canadian Personal Banking, noting that TD finished 2022 with the highest net customer acquisition levels since 2014, including record numbers among new Canadians. He spoke of TD winning "Highest in Customer Satisfaction in Small Business Banking" among Canada's largest banks by J.D. Power last year, and the Bank's recent Brand Finance Magazine award as Top Canadian Brand.
He also touched on the recent acquisition of Cowen, a U.S. investment bank, which has added 1,700 colleagues to the TD team, who bring a wealth of experience, complementary capabilities, deep client relationships and provide industry-leading research.
Amid uncertainty in the global market, the Bank's diversified business model remains resilient
In the wake of several events impacting financial markets in the United States and Europe, Masrani assured owners and customers that TD remains strong.
"Over the past few weeks, we have seen new uncertainty in the global financial sector," said Masrani. "TD's diversified business and strong foundations proved resilient once again. Deposits are stable, new account openings are up, and capital and liquidity are strong."
Long-term economic growth means tackling our long-term challenges
While he praised policymakers in Canada and the U.S. who have taken steps recently to address immediate economic challenges facing the people of both countries, Masrani highlighted the need to tackle our shared challenges to help ensure our future prosperity.
Masrani noted that Canada must realize the potential of its enormous advantages, including the support of responsible energy development, balanced with an accelerated transition to cleaner and more sustainable alternatives.
"We can and should support the responsible energy development the world needs today," he said. "At the same time, we must accelerate the work needed to transition to cleaner alternatives for a more sustainable future. It's not a question of either or; we can and must do both."
Over the next decade, Canada will welcome millions of New Canadians to Canada. If we can help them be successful, we can secure our future.
Masrani pointed to the Canadian federal government's plans to welcome half a million new Canadians in 2025 as a tremendous opportunity for the country.
"The immigrant experience is something I know a bit about. I know what it is like to arrive in a new country and work to build a new life," he said. "For these new Canadians to thrive – for everyone in Canada to thrive – let's continue to drive positive change, help foster new Pathways to Economic Inclusion, and build a better future together."
Masrani said that better housing access for all, employment access at scale, and financial access regardless of where a person lives or what they earn, must be priorities going forward.
"A Canada that is ready, willing, and able to do business with the world must focus on these issues," he said.
TD is firmly focused on its ESG priorities
TD continues to invest in its communities and advance its ESG strategy. Masrani highlighted the Bank's efforts made through The TD Ready Commitment, which contributed $147-million in 2022 to help communities grow and households succeed. He also spoke to the Bank's new $500-billion 2030 Sustainable and Decarbonization Finance Target, designed to support its action plan to help customers and clients seize the opportunities of a low-carbon economy.
"In an evolving market where more people are looking to work with businesses that share their values, [on ESG] TD is setting itself apart."