NAIROBI Nov 6 Kenya's Equity Bank's
profit for the first nine months of the year rose nearly 30
percent largely due to an increase in the bank's gross interest
income, it said on Tuesday.
Equity, which focuses on the lower-income part of the
market, and operates in Uganda, South Sudan, Tanzania and
Rwanda, said gross interest income rose to 22.67 billion Kenyan
shillings ($264.91 million) for the nine months to the end of
September, up from 13.56 billion. Pretax profit was 11.79
Chief Executive James Mwangi said the money Equity made from
loans and government securities drove profits.
"The key driver for the profits is the composition of gross
interest income," Mwangi told investors in Nairobi.
Equity reported total assets increased 18.9 percent to 232.2
billion shillings, up from 195.4 billion during the same period.
Earnings per share rose from 2.63 shillings to 2.99 shillings.
Mwangi said agency banking, which is mainly third party
banking transactions away from bank branches, was a huge growth
"Agents (transcations) will overtake bank branches by Dec
and overtake ATMs by June 2013," Mwangi said.
($1=85.5750 Kenyan shillings)
(Writing by Drazen Jorgic; Editing by Mike Nesbit)