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Why Co-op Bank was named best bank in Kenya in 2021



In October 2021, EMEA Finance announced that the Co-operative Bank had won the coveted prize of best bank in Kenya during the 2021 edition of the  African Banking Awards.

The award rode to Co-op Bank on the bank of Co-op Bank’s successful acquisition and stabilization of Jamii Bora Bank which has since been renamed as Kingdom Bank. The bank acquired 90 per cent stake in Jamii Bora Bank in August 2020 for Sh. 1 billion.

Since the acquisition, Co-op bank has turned Kingdom Bank into a profit generating lender who might soon cross the Sh. 1 billion profitability mark.

For instance, financial results for the nine months ended September show that Kingdom made a net profit of Sh. 413.1 million. This was major improvement compared to the net loss of Sh. 200.9 million the bank had in the year ended December 2020 when Co-op Bank first consolidated the subsidiary.

In addition, over the same period, Kingdom Bank’s shareholder funds have grown to Sh. 1.6 billion from Sh. 1.2 billion over the same period. The performance has benefited both Co-op Bank and the minority shareholders who have not had to provide additional capital since the buyout was completed.

Beyond the acquisition and transformation of loss making Jamii Bora into profit making Kingdom Bank, Co-op Bank was also rewarded for the way it responded to its customers’ needs in the height of the 2020 pandemic.

The Board of Directors’ bold decision to sustain the same level of dividend payments to shareholders despite the pandemic crisis offered a most timely relief, especially to the over 15 Million-Member Co-operative Movement, whose livelihoods would have been severely impaired had the dividend been withheld.

Co-op Bank’s net profit rises to Sh. 11.6 billion in nine months

“The Bank notably also sustained a relentless focus on Staff Wellness with the unprecedented challenges occasioned by the pandemic,” said Group chief executive officer Gideon Muriuki. “It notably undertook a bank-wide analysis to identify and address manpower inefficiencies spurred by the disruption, with a critical focus on staff redeployment and, or retention other than redundancies.”

In addition, the bank’s strong market performance ha also played a major role in position it as the lender of choice. For instance, the posted posted Sh. 11.6 billion net profit for the first nine months of the year. This came after the bank recorded an impressive gross profit of Sh. 16.5 billion, which was a 20 per cent growth from the gross of Sh. 13.8 billion the bank recorded in the same period the previous year. During the nine month 2021 period, total assets grew by Sh. 82 billion to Sh. 592.9 billion compared to Sh. 510.9 billion in the same period last year.

To complement its top position as the 2021 Kenya’s best bank, its chief executive officer Gideon Muriuki was named the bank CEO of the Year. “Co-op Bank is greatly affirmed on our unique business model with the Year 2021 Awards of Best Bank In Kenya and Best Bank in Financial Inclusion Africa,” said Dr. Muriuki. He added that the bank is was honoured with these Awards for extending financial inclusion models to its customers and also for offering shared prosperity, with consistent dividend payments to its shareholders.

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