|We speakin' billions!|
The numbers were good. On the back of high interest rates, BBK raked in Sh6.3billion in profits before taxes for the six months to end of June. Compared to a similar period last year when it reported Sh5.3billion, growth in this regard was 18 per cent.
It did this by holding costs down. BBK did not accept expensive deposits and therefore it did not have fork out large interest payments on deposits.
In the year, Adan informed investors, BBK did Sh40billion of new lending. Their loan book now stands at Sh101billion. Most of this is strictly prudential lending with the bank emphasizing risk management.
Indeed, room for growth is ample - the bank is capitalized to the tune of Sh27billion meaning theoretically it can lend up to 10 times that (Sh270billion) yet it has only put out Sh101bn.
BBK is now ranked third in profitability at the half-year mark after KCB (Sh8.5billion) and Equity Bank (Sh7.6billion). The bank lost its position as the most profitable in the country last year as aggressive expansion and customer recruitment at the two local banks yielded fruit.
To keep costs down, BBK is emphasizing ATM and mobile banking. One of the ways they have done this is by eliminating ATM transaction fees.
They have also launched Hallo mobile banking allowing you to transact via mobile and this is a service you can register to from the screen of your phone without having to go to the bank.
Going forward, Adan said the continued imbalance between what Kenyans are importing and what they export is likely to put pressure on the shilling so in other words, the shilling could weaken in the coming months.