The BBVA 2018 results are in and show a lot of progress, not least earning of €5.32bn ($6.1bn) in the year.

That shows a rise of 51.3% year-on-year in net attributable profit. In addition, operating income grew 6.2% at constant exchange rates. This was attributed to the increase in recurring revenues and cost discipline.

Also, the increase includes the sale of BBVA Chile in the third quarter of 2018, a deal worth €633m.

Excitingly, now more than half of BBVA customers are digital, thereby meeting the target set for 2018.

“Despite a complex environment, we’ve managed to post very good results, a double-digit profitability, while making significant progress in our transformation process,” said BBVA Group executive chairman Carlos Torres Vila.

BBVA 2018 results: regional and digital

Of all the net attributable profit, most of it (€2.4bn) came from Mexico. Next was Spain with €1.4bn and then the US with €735m. South America earned €591m and Turkey gained €569m in net attributable profit. Following this was the rest of Eurasia at €93m.

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Currently, 51% of BBVA customers bank through digital channels. 27.2 million customers now regularly use digital channel. In 2016, they only totalled just over 18 million.

Furthermore, mobile customers account for 43% of the total and the Spain-based bank wants this to be at 50% by the end of 2019.

Total unit sales through digital channels represented 41% of the total. Two years ago, it was only 16%.

This year also saw a fall in branches and employees. BBVA now has 7,963 branches, compared to 8,271 in 2017 and 8,660 in 2016. In addition, employee numbers have fallen from 134,792 to 125,627 over the past two years.

However, ATMs increased from just over 31,000 to 32,029 in the same period of time.

The sharpest fall in branches was witness by Spain, which has 3,303 in 2016 but only is home to only 2,840. This is in sharp contrast to Mexico which has the exact same amount of BBVA branches in 2018 as it did in 2016.