Monday, March 31, 2008
Banks Results for 2007
In the context of 2007, every bank should have seen at least 10% growth owing to an economic growth rate of 7%. And that is to stand still. BBK and KCB show the advantages and disadavantages of being huge. Being huge, you can lend big, but then in Kenya you need to lend small in order to generate the volumes that we'll give above average profit growth. The other issue is that it takes a revoluntary leap for you to see the profit growth that
would make shareholders flock to your shares. BBK is a worry in this respect. A 24% increase in net interest income from higher lending was wiped by the costs required to get it that growth. Could that be KCB several yrs down the road? It has to grow aggressively outside Kenya.
Apart from Equity, the other stand out banks in the above list are CFC and NIC and DTK. CFC is of course presently the only universal bank in Kenya, but seems to be suffering from because its banking division was actually profitable in 2007 but it made a loss on group basis because of its life business. Both DTK and NIC are building themselves niches and doing so profitably. The branch expansion to increase customers and geographic reach will mean that they can both continue to
see profit growth over the coming years.