Standard Chartered Bank has declared a final dividend of Kes14 per share bringing the total payout for the year ended December 2021 to Kes19 apiece after posting a record Kes9 billion in net earnings.
The bank declared and paid an interim dividend of Kes5 per share in December last year.
The profit, which was the highest in five years, is attributable to a rebound in economic activities in the country following the easing of Covid-19 curbs.
Increased transactional volumes saw the operating income surge by 7 percent to hit Kes29.2 billion up from the Kes27.4 billion realized in the previous year.
In the period under focus, StanChart saw customer deposits increase by 3 percent to ????%.
“The funding quality remains high with current and savings accounts making up 91 percent of total customer deposits,” Chief Finance Officer Chemutai Murgor said during investors’ briefing.
“Looking at our balance sheet, we are happy that it remains strong and highly liquid. Loans and advances to our clients increased by 4 percent. The overall asset quality remained stable,” she added.
In the period, the lender’s non-interest income increased by 25 percent to close at Kes10.4 billion with strong performances in wealth management and financial markets investments.
“Income returned to growth after the dip last year occasioned by the impact of the pandemic, increasing 6 percent with strong underlying business momentum,” CEO, Mr Kariuki Ngari, said.
The net interest income, however, decreased by two percent to Kes18.8 billion with increased volumes more than offset by lower average yields.
Further, the bank saw operating expenses ease by 10 percent to Kes14.5 billion compared to Kes16.1 billion previously.
“We will continue to focus on our differentiated corporate Network and Affluent personal businesses and through our augmented digital capabilities we can now selectively extend our reach into the Mass Retail segment,” Mr Ngari said.
In early March, StanChart announced plans to enter Kenya’s e-commerce segment through Solv, a technology firm it first launched in India in December 2020.
In the deal, the lender is expected to be among the financial partners of the platform which offers SMEs an online marketplace, support services and loans from multiple lenders.