Buoyed by a strong performance in 2021, the tier one Sacco is set to revamp its product offering and conquer more market share this year
By George Gichuki
Stima Deposit Taking (DT) Sacco successfully held its 48th Annual General Meeting (AGM) on 25th February, 2022. The tier one Sacco is ranked number two nationally by the Sacco Society Regulatory Authority (SASRA). Having opened its common bond, the Sacco which offers front office services activity ( FOSA) has continued to draw membership from the business community, employees in the national and county governments as well as professionals in various fields. Gone are the days when its members were only from the energy sector. Against this background, Stima Sacco has become more innovative in its product offering as it endeavours to meet the needs of its diverse membership in a field that is characterized by cut throat competition.
Underpinning the steady growth of Stima Sacco over the years has been the formulation and implementation of solid strategic plans with a timeline of five years. Currently, it is implementing the 2019-2024 strategic plan. “The strategic plan is stratified under several pillars and enablers with a view towards maximizing member value,” said Mrs. Rebecca Miano, the National Chair of Stima Sacco while delivering her speech during the 48th AGM. “Our focus has been on key drivers of the strategy such as mobile banking, agency banking and physical branch network as well as diversification of income streams through strategic partnerships and delivery of alternative business channels such as Shariah banking and insurance,” she added.
By leveraging on technology, the tier one Sacco has rolled out an agency banking delivery channel dubbed Stima Sacco Mlangoni. According to Dr. Gamaliel Hassan, Chief Executive Officer, Stima Sacco, this service will bring more customers on board hence enhancing financial inclusion. Besides agency banking, the Sacco has also fastened the process of getting Visa-branded automated teller machine (ATM) cards for its members. Additionally, it has updated the M-Pawa app so that the members can access their accounts faster and easily. Other ways through which the channels have been improved include: cheque truncation whose goal is to improve efficiency in interbank transfers, launch of a seamless salary solution dubbed Salo Chap Chap and re-introduction of Pesalink in order to facilitate inter-bank transfers. During the 48th AGM, Dr. Hassan also said that the Sacco is in the process of finalizing its direct debit process, in order to debit its members’ bank accounts on agreed dates and facilitate loan repayments and savings contributions.
Stima Sacco also finalized the deployment of the Shariah compliant product line in 2021. This is in line with the Sacco’s strategic objectives and goals towards mobilization of savings and ensuring that members are able to access financing at fair and reasonable rates.
The Sacco is also a member of the Kenya Mortgage Refinance Company (KRMC). The objective of this strategic partnership is to provide long term funds to primary mortgage lenders. It launched this product in 2021. “We commenced the lending of low-cost mortgages at interest rates of between 9-9.5% with tenors of up twenty five years,” said Dr. Hassan during the AGM.
Before the end of this year, Stima Sacco is planning to roll out a number of products among them being omnichannel which encompasses mobile, internet and agency banking. Additionally, it will strengthen the diaspora remittance solution so as to have a self on-boarding functionality for new members as well as referral capability.
2021 financial results
Despite a challenging operating environment in 2021 that was mainly occasioned by the Covid-19 pandemic, Stima Sacco registered good results. To start with, its turnover grew by 16% to Kshs. 6.86 billion in 2021 from Kshs. 5.89 billion in 2020. Additionally, its share capital also grew from Kshs. 2.02 billion to Kshs. 2.38 billion, while the deposits increased by 9.7% from Kshs. 31.19 billion to Kshs. 34.21 billion. By the same token, the loan book grew by 10% from Kshs. 32.80 billion to Kshs. 36.35. Finally, the Sacco balance sheet grew by 13% from Kshs. 41.06 billion to Kshs. 48 billion.
As a result of this remarkable performance, Stima Sacco achieved surplus of Kshs. 1.43 billion in 2021, compared to Kshs. 1.03 billion in 2020. The members were paid a first and final dividend of 14% per share on fully paid up shares as at December 31, 2021. Additionally, it paid interest rebates on members’ deposits at the rate of 10.75% for the year under review. Most importantly, Stima Sacco achieved Kshs.6.89 billion of the income target – an equivalent of 99%.
After laying a strong foundation over the years, Stima Sacco is optimistic of growing more in the days ahead. “We have confidence that with improved operations, customer service processes, the up scaling of the core banking system and focus on technology, we shall experience exponential growth and agility in serving our members,” said Mrs. MianoIn the same breath, Dr. Hassan noted that as the Sacco continues to grow and expand, risk management will continue to play a critical role in its operations in line with international best practices. It will also continue strengthening its corporate governance in order to enhance integrity and overall performance. “The internal processes and procedures will also be continually reviewed, revised and updated with a view to strengthening process controls,” affirmed Dr. Hassan