Why Equity Group has chosen customers over profits amid hard economic times

From left: Equity Bank Kenya Managing Director Gerald Warui, Equity Group Managing Director and CEO Dr. James Mwangi and Equity BCDC Managing Director Celestin Muntuabu during the Q3 2023 Investor Briefing event. PHOTO/Equity Group Holdings.

By Veronicah Njoki

  • The institution has had a significant strategic approach to give their customers financial flexibility to overcome their economic hurdles. 
  • Beyond transactions, it has invested in empowering its customers with the necessary skills and knowledge to thrive in a dynamic economic space and make informed decisions. 
  • The institution has allocated KSh21.4 billion in credit guarantees. 

In a world struggling with the tremendous economic effects of soaring interest rates, high inflation, and a weak Shilling trading against a strong US dollar, there has been a significant sense of resilience by one Equity Group Holdings. 

This company has still chosen to put its customers first over what it makes as profits. In the recent press release of the Group’s 3rd Quarter 2023, investor results showed high financial metrics. 

The release gave a comprehensive insight into the strategic choices that drive the company’s commitment to financial resilience, community impact, and customer service.

Strategic support and loan book expansion

According to the company’s November 20, 2023, press release, Equity Group Holdings decided to increase its book loan by 26%. This increment has been from KSh673.9 billion to KSh845.9 billion, which is beyond just an increment in the company’s financial numbers. 

During the press release, the Equity Group CEO and Managing Director, Dr. James Mwangi, says, “We grew our loan book by 26% despite the uncertainty of difficult economic times to ensure our customers continued to fund their dreams while keeping the lights of the economy on.

We did not hesitate in making this strategic decision to focus on supporting our customers to navigate and survive the challenging microeconomic environment.” 

This implies that the institution has had a significant strategic approach to give their customers financial flexibility to overcome their economic hurdles. 

This intentional expansion has a dual purpose: giving customers vital support to adapt to the economic evolutions and to maintain the regional economic evolutions where the institution runs.

Absorbing cost increments, yield maintenance

Undoubtedly, one of the things that has made Equity Group Holdings stand out is its ability to remain committed to maintaining its loan yields at 12.1% despite a significant 35% rise in the funding cost. 

This subtle approach enhances the Group’s balance in preserving the profit margins as it also greatly supports its customers. 

Dr. Mwangi emphasized this strategic decision in the investor briefing meeting by highlighting the company’s commitment to customer resilience. 

Equity Group CEO and Managing Director, Dr. James Mwangi, under whose stewardship the company has been thriving. PHOTO/Equity Group Holdings.

He says, “Through absorbing a portion of the funding costs, Equity Group shows an outstanding financial expertise and a significant commitment to its customers.”

Entrepreneurship training 

Equity Group Holdings’ efforts in entrepreneurship training and financial literacy are unmatched. It has been recognized through its educational role in looking into the challenging economic evolutions. 

Beyond transactions, this Group has invested in empowering its customers with the necessary skills and knowledge to thrive in a dynamic economic space and make informed decisions. 

The institution has allocated KSh21.4 billion in credit guarantees. 

This has amplified its commitment to capacitating and de-risking its customers and giving them a good foundation to navigate through the uncertainties in the economic world.

Diversification in digital era

The diversification and commitment of Equity Group go beyond just the sectoral and geographical domains. 

According to the November Pree release, the company’s loan book will have 52.4% in the local currencies and 47.6% in the US dollars. 

This implies that the company is committed to mitigating any risks associated with currencies. 

Equally, this Group has had a noticeable reliance on digital channels. It has processed 95% of all its loan disbursements. 

Through its strategic use of technology, Equity Group has continued to enhance efficiency and has become a stabilizer in the digital financial transformation. 

Most of the Equity customers have given positive feedback over the years on the convenient and seamless banking experience they have had.

Shared prosperity model and social impact

Beyond its financial metrics, the impact that Equity Group has had on society is profound. 

Over the years, the company has focused significantly on financially educating the youth and women and consequently benefitted 2,000,000 clients. 

The Mastercard Foundation has continually collaborated with the “Young Africa Works Program” to exemplify the Group’s commitment to empowering the youth in Kenya. 

With this collaboration, 259.3 billion has been disbursed to MSMEs.

Equity Group has left profound footprints on healthcare and education in Kenya. 

It has tirelessly demonstrated its dedication to the development of the Kenyan community and created a positive social impact that goes beyond traditional banking services.

Marketing position, brand recognition

The Group has risen to be the 4th biggest financial rank in the world, according to Brand Finance. 

It has also taken the rank of being the 14th best-performing bank in Africa and the biggest in Central and Eastern Africa. 

This is as per The Africa Report. 

Equity Group reaffirms its strategic position and great resilience through these wonderful rankings and showcases a future with great possibilities.

Strategic financial metrics

The financial metrics of Equity Group are not static numbers; they are more educative on forward-thinking initiatives and strategic decisions and approaches. 

Its significant strength in liquidity (49.7%), NPL coverage (67.2%) and asset quality (12.2%) show the agility of its balance sheet. 

As we experience ease in the microeconomic environment, the company’s strategic position, having a ratio of 49.7 percent liquidity, will offer flexibility regarding emerging opportunities and the evolving economy. 

Empowering healthcare and education

The impact that Equity Group has had on the community goes beyond traditional banking services. 

Its initiatives, for instance, The Wings to Fly, have financially supported more than 55,000 high school scholars to study. 

Wings To Fly beneficiaries have been capacitated to study throughout high school and beyond. PHOTO/Courtesy.

It also has programs such as Technical and Vocational Education and Training (TVET) and Equity Leadership University Program that are geared towards giving scholarships in the Kenyan Education sector. 

The press release highlights that the Equity Afia Medical Franchise, which has 89 medical facilities, has had a record of 1,921,919 visits within the year. 

This implies that the Group is also committed to ensuring that everyone in the country can access good healthcare. 

The Group’s initiatives have continually contributed to the development of society and embodied its commitment to fostering people’s well-being. 

Navigating towards a Resilient Future

In a world where economic uncertainties are many, Equity Group Holdings has not just withstood; it has come out as a strategic player geared towards charting a future of resilience. 

The 3rd Quarter 2023 investor results from the 2023 press release clearly show the Group’s dedication to supporting its customers and how it is positioning itself for more growth even in a post-pandemic world. 

As the wider microeconomic tide gradually stabilizes and business improves, Equity Group Holdings still stands at the frontline. 

The reason is it has had different revenue streams, an agile balance sheet, and an unwavering commitment to transform people’s lives. 

The Group has also bestowed dignity and expanded the wealth creation avenues.

The journey continues, and Equity Group Holdings proudly remains a torchbearer in the economic space. 

It continues to actively navigate through the challenges and actively creates a future where financial empowerment extends through the boundaries and becomes a reality for all people. 

As days go by, Equity Group Holdings stands out as a pillar of advancement and a great financial strategist, highly committed to fostering economic empowerment on a more extensive scale.

YOU MAY ALSO LIKE: AFRAA, Afreximbank collaborate for Africa’s aviation growth

Dear reader, how about you envision how good it would be if resilience and empowerment become concrete realities for communities and people all over the world?

Previous articleBoosting Immunity: Neglected and underutilized crops could improve health
Next articleBook Review: Customer Service Devotional


Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.