The Star (Nairobi)

East Africa: Kenya Commercial Bank Focus On Market Share Not Expansion

KENYA Commercial Bank has suspended further expansion into the region and will instead concentrate on growing its market share using existing networks, its chairman Musa Ndeto has said.

Ndeto said that with a market share of 17 per cent in Kenya, less than 10 per cent in Uganda, Rwanda, Burundi and Tanzania and a 41 per cent share in South Sudan, the board of directors and management of KCB are not satisfied with that position considering its a top tier bank ranked the largest by asset base in the East African region.

"We made a decision as a board that we shall not go into any new markets because we need to increase the market share in each of the country where we operate," said Ndeto.

Ndeto ruled out any possibilities of venturing into areas such as Democratic Republic of Congo, Malawi, Zambia, Somalia (which is now relatively peaceful) and Chad- countries which speculators have linked the bank with as regards its quest for expanding its network in Africa.

KCB has employed 5,050 people across its 227 branches in the five East African countries that it operates in. Apart from consolidation of the business, Ndeto said that halting regional expansion was also based on security-related issues in some of the African countries.

He was speaking during the bank's 42nd annual general meeting held yesterday in Nairobi. Shareholder Alloys Chami questioned the management on strategies it has put in place to turn-around "dormant subsidiaries" which he claimed were dragging down the group's profit. Last year the bank's subsidiaries outside Kenya contributed 8.4 per cent to the group profit.

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