Equity Group has registered a profit after tax of Kshs. 12.8 billion in the first quarter of 2023. Underpinning the strong performance was the growth of customer deposits and the loan book to Kshs. 1,111.2 billion and Kshs. 756.3 billion respectively in the said period.
Speaking while releasing these results, Dr. James Mwangi, Equity Group Managing Director and Chief Executive Officer observed : “The strong growth speaks to the Group’s embedded social and trust capital that has seen the Group’s brand rated the fourth strongest financial brand on Earth. We are working to anchor the strength of the brand on customer experience, its capabilities and superior product offering.” He added :: “We have become a truly regional and diversified business.”
Challenging it might have been, the Covid-19 experience helped the Group to open a new chapter in its business. “The Covid-19 environment acted as a tailwind for digital transactions adoption by our customers and we have emerged out of the three year pandemic period as a strong digital business,” said Dr. Mwangi. By and large, the business has evolved to online and digital.
The Group’s other operating costs grew due to massive business transformation expenses to accommodate innovation and technology investments for digital transformation and business readiness for the next level of growth, as well as the effect of rising inflation and currency depreciation. The staff costs also grew reflecting the strengthening of the management bench in keeping with growth in size, complexity and sophistication of the transformed business.
Despite the challenging operating environment, the offensive strategy has produced 21% growth in total assets and 23% growth in customer deposits, anchored on enhanced brand image through greater social impact investments. These focused on financial inclusion and entrepreneurship training, investments in host communities where refugees reside, capacity building in agriculture and access to affordable healthcare while supporting social safety nets for marginalized populations such as refugees, orphans, the elderly and physically challenged and spearheading environmental and social sustainability initiatives for communities and society.