BancABC sets sight on microfinance

ABC Holdings subsidiary BancABC Zimbabwe plans to venture into the microfinance business in the next few months, group chief executive officer Doug Munatsi has said.

Munatsi said the bank received the nod from the central bank last week.

“We got the Reserve Bank of Zimbabwe approval for the microfinance segment last week,” he said.
“We hope we will be able to launch it in the next few months. We will be in partnership with government employees and seek to understand their needs and meet them.”

The group offers microfinance lending in Zambia and consumer lending in other countries that include Botswana and Tanzania.

Munatsi said the group would be closing its $50 million rights issue by mid-year.

The company’s major shareholder African Development Corporation will underwrite the rights issue. “In the past two years we have been using internal resources, but now there is need to raise more capital,” he said.

Munatsi said out of $50 million Zimbabwe would get $15 million. Botswana and Zambia would also get some funding.

He said the group would grow this year, but there was need for additional capital for the growth to be realised.

Munatsi said the company will be mobilising mortgage finance from Shelter Afrique after the realisation demand for mortgage finance was high.
BancABC Zimbabwe last year received $7 million from Shelter Afrique for mortgage finance which the bank said was oversubscribed.

“We will be engaging Shelter Afrique for more money, but I wouldn’t have a figure,” he said.
“But we are happy because we have a zero default rate from mortgage borrowers.”

Munatsi said the bank’s market share continued to be on a growth path with the bank well positioned as depositors had been very supportive.

BancABC Zimbabwe loan book increased by 132% to P2 billion from P895 million while the retail loan book was up five fold to P378 million.

“ABC Holdings Limited loans and advances almost doubled from P3,1 billion to P6,1 billion supported by growth in Zimbabwe,” the group said.

While BancABC Zimbabwe deposits were up 158% to P2 billion.

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