Kenya Commercial Bank’s, Annual General Meeting (AGM) to be held on May 8, 2009, is expected to endorse the bank’s plans of cross listing on the Rwanda Over the Counter (ROTC) market.
According to information availed to The New Times, cross listing on the ROTC will be considered and, if thought fitting will be passed as an ordinary resolution.
“Having successfully cross listed KCB shares in Tanzania and Uganda we will seek to do the same in Rwanda during 2009,” a press statement from the bank reads in part.
“KCB is a strong regional business. The cross listing will boost its visibility and acceptability in the various markets where we operate,” KCB’s Group Chairman, Peter W. Muthoka said in the statement.
Cross listing of shares is when a firm lists its equity shares on one or more foreign stock exchange in addition to its domestic exchange.
KCB is also planning to open six more branches in Rwanda to stamp a footprint as a strong regional brand.
On April 30, 2009 KCB group announced a five percent increase in its pretax profits for the first quarter of 2008 to Kshs.1.73 billion (Rwf12.5 billion) from Kshs.1.65 billion (Rwf11.9 billion) in the same period last year.
The bank’s interest income increased by 24 percent in the first quarter of last year from Kshs3.3 billion to Kshs4.2 billion in the last quarter due to growth in loans and advances.
At the same time, interest expenses increased by 89 percent from Kshs.0.4 billion in the first quarter of 2008 to Kshs.0.7 billion in the last quarter.
During the quarter, foreign exchange income went up by 37 percent to Kshs646 million from Kshs470 million. Fees and commissions went up by 16 percent to Kshs1.35 billion up from Kshs1.16 billion.
“The increase in fees and commissions and foreign exchange earnings reflects the growth in the volumes of our business and will, together with interest income, underpin our performance for the remainder of the year,” said Martin Oduor-Otieno, KCB Group Chief Executive.
However, total operating expenses also increased by 28 percent, something the bank attributed to higher spending in ongoing business activities including a rise in staff costs, branch expansion and continued investment in Information Technology.
Oduor-Otieno, said that the bank’s priority in 2009 is to consolidate the business growth especially through improved customer service, technology enhancement and staff development.
He said the Bank was on course to expanding its regional network further to bolster its ability to deliver quality products and services in the various markets.
“Our target for this year in terms of channel expansion is 70 new branches and 200 new ATMs across the region so as to take our services closer to the target markets,” said the Chief Executive Officer.
The bank officials said that the increase reflected the slow momentum associated with every first quarter of the year and that they expect increase in profits in the second quarter.
“The first quarter is always slow as businesses re-orientate themselves to the realities of the new economic year, yet expenses have to be incurred. We expect to witness a significant pick up in our performance in the second and third quarters as the business environment improves,” Muthoka said.
KCB operates in five countries which include; Kenya, Uganda, Tanzania, Southern Sudan and Rwanda. The bank also announced that it will be opening business in Burundi this year.