By Bernard Matumbai
Co-operative Bank of Kenya has been named East Africa’s Regional Bank of the Year at the African Banker Awards Gala Ceremony held in Accra, the Ghanaian capital.
In a continuation of the listed Tier One lender’s international supremacy, the bank was feted for its overall excellence in the banking sector across the region.
In 2021, the Bank was honoured at the Global SME Finance Awards, scooping the Honorary Mention – Product Innovation of the Year gong, coming hot on the heels of the VISA Awards, where the bank bagged three titles – Best SME Solution Roll-out; Best Contactless Champion and Most Financially Inclusive Bank.
At the EMEA Finance African Banking Awards 2021, Dr Gideon Muriuki, the Managing Editor and CEO, was awarded the Best CEO of the Year honours, supplementing the Best Bank in Kenya (EMEA) and Best Bank in Kenys by Financial Times Banker Awards, both of 2020.
In 2019, Co-op Bank was voted the Best Bank in Sustainable Finance by the Kenya Association of Manufacturers, as was Best Retail Bank in Kenya by International Finance earlier and Best Banking CEO Kenya, both by International Finance in 2018, among countless other notable achievements years gone.
Its recent milestone is an indication that Co-op Bank seems well set to propel its fortunes even further, having recently posted mouthwatering results for the first quarter of 2022.
Last week, the bank announced a 66 per cent surge in profit after tax profit, hitting Sh5.8 billion compared to Sh3.5 billion recorded in the corresponding period in 2021.
The bank’s upward trajectory was equally manifested in its pre-tax portfolio, registering an impressive 56 per cent growth to stand at Sh7.78 billion, a stellar shift from 2021’s Sh4.98 billion mark.
Managing Director and Group CEO Gideon Muriuki said then that the feat was in line with its strategy with the highest growth experienced in the bank’s investment in government securities that grew to Sh183.4 billion, a 10 per cent rise, from Sh166.2 billion recorded in 2021.
The bank also saw a growth in total assets to Sh597 billion, up from Ksh552.9 billion in the same period last year, with net loans and advances ballooning to Ksh324.5 billion compared to Sh298.2 billion in 2021.
Customer deposits also rose to Sh410.8 billion representing a 4per cent increase from Sh393.8 billion, while external funds from development partners stood at Sh43.3 billion from Ksh46.9 billion in 2021.
The African Banker Awards, which bring together industry leaders from Africa and the world, recognise personalities and institutions that are driving Africa’s rapidly transforming financial sector.
The event was held under the High Patronage of the African Development Bank, being part of the programme of the Bank’s annual meetings.
The African Banker Awards are a landmark annual event for African banking taking place during the annual meetings of the African Development Bank (AfDB).