Regional lender Equity Group has posted a 35 percent rise in half-year profit to Kes23.7 billion from Kes17.5 billion during a similar period last year owing to higher income.
In the period, the bank’s operating income surged by 26.4 percent to close at Kes65.6 billion from Kes51.9 billion during a similar period last year.
Net interest income grew by 28 percent to Kes39.8 billion up from Kes31.2 billion recorded in the same period last year, Group CEO Dr James Mwangi said during release of the results.
Financial disclosures show that net loans to customers increased by 29 percent to Kes650.6 billion up from Kes504.8 billion during the comparable hald in 2021.
The differentiated strategy adopted by management to support borrowers cope with the difficulties of Covid-19 disruptions has seen most of the businesses survive and recover, Dr Mwangi noted.
The group’s loan book grew by 29 percent to Kes650.5 billion from Kes504.8 billion last year while their investment in government securities edged up 16 percent.
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“The Group’s 8.5 percent NPL positively and favourably compares to Kenya’s banking industry NPL ratio of 14.7 percent as at June 30th,” said Dr Mwangi.
The bank’s deployment of technology continued to pay dividends with retail internet banking under Equity Online and EazzyNet recording 1,081 percent surge to 7.5 million up from 600,000 transactions last year as customers keep adopting digital banking solutions due to the ease and convenience.
“Pay With Equity among merchants has grown from 13 million transactions to 52 million transactions since the onset of COVID-19,” explained Dr Mwangi.
In the period, Equity Group posted 19 percent growth in total assets to Kes1.33 trillion from Kes1.1 trillion recorded in the 2021 half-year disclosurers.
Equity’s board has, however, not recommended the payment of an interim dividend for the period under focus.