The Banks DIH Outlet at New Amsterdam has been adjudged top performer among the DIH outlets with a whopping $2.7 billion in sales recorded for 2017.This was announced when the company held its Annual Shareholders’ Meeting on Sunday.The record sales last year saw the New Amsterdam Branch reclaiming the coveted Chairman’s Trophy which is given to the most outstanding branch.New Amsterdam Branch Manager Reginald Mathews had vowed to have it returned to Berbice when he lost it last year.Magistrate Krisondat Persaud collecting from Marketing Director George McDonald a cheque for the Domestic Violence and Counselling CentreAddressing shareholders, Chairman of the Board of Directors, Clifford Reis, acknowledged the efforts of the New Amsterdam Branch and noted that it had sold 1,600,011 items in 2017.Reis said the New Amsterdam Branch made $13.7 million in after-tax profit, which is an increase of $8.5 million over 2016.Demico Quik Serve New Amsterdam was able to contribute $109 million in sales last year.Meanwhile, Citizens Bank New Amsterdam, which is in operation for now a third year, had deposits totalling $392 billion.Reis also noted that the bank had approved loans totalling $64 million.“The shares that you own (are) worth money, and if you go into the bank with your shares, you can borrow money on those shares; and they have a high value,” Reis told the gathering.Last week Monday, the company’s $10.00 shares were being sold on the stock market at $45.10, and by the end of the week, they were selling at $40.00.Half a decade ago, some advocates had been saying that those shares were worth $6.00 while the company was advising shareholders not to sell, Reis said.A section of the gathering at the shareholders meeting in Berbice“If you put $10.00 in the bank five years ago, and you go back tomorrow, you will get back $10.00; you will not get back $11.00. But if you are a shareholder in Banks DIH and you sell those shares tomorrow, you will get $45.00; that is over a 300 percent increase,” he declared. Explaining further, the company’s chairman said, “If you purchase a share and the company paid $1.04 dividend, it means that you are getting about 2.3 percent on your investment tax-free. And if you put the same money in the bank you will get $1.34 interest, and by the time they charge you banking charges, you will get less than one percent back.”Reis noted that Banks DIH was able to weather the effects of an artificial increase in foreign exchange rates, which affected the acquisition cost for raw and packaging materials, machinery spares, and the availability of foreign exchange for the payment of goods and services.The overall effect of reduced export earnings in the agriculture sector affected overall retail sales, Reis said, while noting that the focus for the new financial year is on further investment in solar energy, an initiative which was tested and introduced in 2017 at the company’s Main Street Qik Serv restaurant.Overall, last year the company registered a $4.243 billion after-tax profit.“Shareholders, this was made possible as a result of sales of our malt products, aerated, liquor beverages, and food products. Additionally, further benefits accrued from improved production efficiencies resulting from our capital investment in plants and machinery. The company also benefited from a reduction in prices for several key raw and packaging materials, which include sugar and pre-forms.”Reis said the overall performance by Banks DIL Ltd last year was also because of prudent management of the company’s assets and financial resources.Meanwhile, as is customary, the company presented a cheque to two schools to assist with a project which would benefit current and future children. This year the schools chosen were Black Bush Polder Secondary and Number 48 Primary.The beverage giant also assisted a non-governmental organisation with a monetary contribution. This year the presentation was made to the Domestic Violence and Counselling Centre located at Corriverton.