Co-operative Bank on Thursday announced that its Board of Directors had approved a Ksh200 Million capital injection into the Kenya Mortgage Refinance Company (KMRC).
The KMRC is an initiative of National Treasury and World Bank that aims to provide secure, long-term funding to the mortgage lenders, thereby increasing the availability and affordability of mortgage loans to Kenyans.
Releasing the half-year report, CEO Gideon Muriuki reported that the bank recorded a pre-tax profit of Ksh9.98 Billion for the first half of 2018 compared to Ksh9.3 Billion recorded in a similar period in 2017.
Those figures represented an impressive growth of +7.6% against the backdrop of a challenging economic environment in the period. Profit after tax was Kshs 7.1 Billion compared to Kshs 6.6 Billion in the previous year, a +7.6% rise.
"The good performance represents the tangible benefits arising from the bold Soaring Eagle Transformation Project that the bank has been implementing since 2014 with a clear focus on improvement in operating efficiencies, sales force effectiveness and innovative customer delivery platforms," read the report in part.
The total interest income improved by 7.9% from Kshs 19.25 billion to Kshs 20.8 billion while the total interest expense increased marginally by 2.2% from Kshs 5.84 Billion to Kshs 5.97 Billion on account of a 4.5% growth of deposits.
In terms of customer care, the bank successfully moved 87% of all customer transactions to alternative delivery channels that include self-service kiosks in 155 branches, an expanded 24-hour contact centre, mobile banking, 580 ATMs, internet and over 10,000 Co-op Kwa Jirani banking agents.
Through the Co-op Bank Foundation, the bank provided scholarships for gifted but needy students from all regions of Kenya. The sponsorship includes; fully-paid secondary education, full fees for University education, Internships and career openings for beneficiaries.
The foundation is fully funded by the bank and has so far supported 6,331 students since the inception of the program in 2007.
Among the accolades the institution has scooped was being recognised by Banker Africa, East Africa Awards 2018 with three key awards, namely the Best Retail Bank in Kenya, the Best SME Bank in Kenya and the Best Investment Institution in Kenya - a re-affirmation of the bank’s unique position as a bank that positively influences the lives of the majority of Kenyan citizens.
The Co-operative Bank Group further noted that the operating environment is on a gradual recovery path from the very significant challenges seen in 2017.
"The Group will continue to leverage on the growing 7.4 million account-holder base, digital banking focus, the basket of innovative financial solutions, efficient delivery of services and multichannel access to retain market position and deliver business growth and profitability in the days ahead," concluded the report.
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