NCBA Group PLC recorded Sh6.4 billion pre-tax profit in its Quarter 1 results ending March 31, 2023, marking a Sh1.6 billion increase in profit compared to a similar period last year.

During Q1, the Group also posted a post-tax profit of Sh5.1 billion, which represented a Sh1.7 billion growth compared to a similar period in 2022.

Here are some key highlights of NCBA Group results:

• Assets grew by 7 per cent YoY to Sh629 billion.

• Customer deposits rose by 7 per cent YoY to Sh500 billion.

• Digital loan disbursements grew 37 per cent YoY to Sh223 billion.

• Operating income was up by 18 per cent YoY to Sh15.5 billion.

• Operating profit before loan loss provisions up 10 per cent YoY to Sh8.3 billion.

• Provision for credit losses down 23 per cent YoY to Sh2.0 billion.

• Net Non-Performing Loans and advances up 38.7 per cent YoY to Sh17.2 million.

• Insider loans, advances and other facilities (to directors, shareholders, associates and employees) went up by 26.2 per cent YoY to 27.9 million.

NCBA Group has attributed the growth of its profitability to an upsurge in the operating income and a weakening in loan impairment charges by 23 per cent.

The Group says its prudent management of credit risk has seen its NPL ratio improve and cost of risk reduce in spite of the current tough macroeconomic conditions in Kenya.

“These strong operating results are attributable to continued focus on our strategic priorities, growth in customer numbers and improvement in regional entities profitability. Our market-leading forex capabilities have led to an increased customer base and transaction volumes,” said NCBA Group Managing Director John Gachora.

The Group says its Uganda, Tanzania, Rwanda and Ivory Coast subsidiaries are contributing positively to it due to 2022 turnaround efforts and increasing its diversification of revenues.

 “We have a stable and growing deposit base which indicates our ability to invest and attract more retail and corporate customers by offering a greater superior experience and convenience through a bigger network,” said Gachora.

He added, “Our systematic branch expansion has allowed us to cover 26 counties in Kenya, and we expect 36 in 2023 with a target to add another 10 in 2023, which will enhance job opportunities across the regions we operate in.”

The digitization of client engagement with NCBA’s unit trust products has facilitated the onboarding of over 5,000 new unit trust customers.

Gachora noted that the macro-environment remains suppressed for customers driven by the rising inflation, forex pressure and concerns over market liquidity,

“NCBA Group`s regional employee footprint of more than 3,000 professionals remains committed to deliver financial solutions that help customers navigate the changing microeconomic environment.

“Additionally, NCBA’s over 27,000 listed shareholders continue showing investor confidence in one of the fastest growing businesses in the region.”