KCB Group Plc shareholders have given their approval for a dividend payout of KShs. 3.2 billion as the final dividend for the financial year 2022, demonstrating the sustained commitment to providing returns to shareholders.

This decision brings the total dividend paid for the year to KShs. 6.4 billion, following the interim dividend of KShs. 3.2 billion declared at the end of last year.

At the 52nd Annual General Meeting (AGM) held on Thursday through electronic means, the shareholders endorsed a final dividend of KShs. 1.00 per share, as recommended by the Board. The dividend will be paid on or around May 26, 2023, net of withholding tax, to the shareholders listed on the members’ register at the close of business on April 6, 2023.

The shareholders also approved the appointment of two directors, Ms. Anuja Pandit and Dr. Joseph Kinyua, to fill casual vacancies on the Group Board.

The dividend payment follows the impressive performance of the Group in the full year 2022, with a 20% increase in net profits after accounting for all expenses, provisions, and taxes, amounting to KShs. 40.8 billion. This achievement resulted in a 60 basis points rise in the Group’s return on equity to 23.0%, positioning it as one of the top performers at the Nairobi Securities Exchange.

KCB Group has implemented an ambitious investment strategy focused on achieving long-term growth and enhancing shareholder value. In 2022, the contribution of profit before tax (PBT) from Group businesses, excluding KCB Bank Kenya, reached 17.0% (up from 13.9%), driven by BPR Bank, KCB Bank Tanzania, and KCB Bank Uganda. The recently released Q1 2023 results show that the contribution has further increased to 35%, as the investments in regional businesses continue to yield positive results, particularly with the consolidation of Trust Merchant Bank (TMB), the Group’s newest subsidiary in the Democratic Republic of Congo.

In December, the Group successfully acquired TMB as part of its ongoing strategy to expand its regional presence, accelerate growth, and establish a strong position in the region. KCB acquired 85% of TMB shares, while the existing shareholders will retain the remaining balance for a minimum of two years, after which KCB may acquire their shares. This approach ensures continuity and stability for TMB’s stakeholders in the DRC market.

Andrew W. Kairu, Chairman of KCB Group, stated, “Despite the challenges and volatility in the business environment, the Group has remained resilient, consistently delivering value to stakeholders and strengthening the foundation of our enterprise. We have a robust strategy in place that enables us to prudently allocate our capital and resources across the region to ensure superior returns from our investments.”

He further added, “We are optimistic about 2023 and are fully prepared to capitalize on the available opportunities in our various markets. We continue to integrate sustainable practices into our business operations and strategy. Our business is well aligned to promote green finance, advance our net zero goals, and contribute to positive change in the communities we serve.”

For the first quarter of 2023, KCB Group PLC recorded a profit after tax of KShs. 9.8 billion, supported by increased revenues. The Group witnessed significant growth in its balance sheet, with total assets reaching KShs. 1.63 trillion. This growth reflects strong customer confidence as the Bank focused on supporting customers during the challenging economic conditions while safeguarding its business for future prospects and growth.

Paul Russo, CEO of KCB Group, commented, “We have experienced steady growth across all our core indicators, resulting in an impressive performance in both our balance sheet and profitability. This success is attributed to strong revenue momentum in the corporate and retail segments. Our primary focus was on delivering value and support to our customers, assisting them in navigating the challenging economic environment and driving revenue growth for the Bank through various income streams.”

KCB continued to enhance support for micro, small, and medium-sized enterprises (MSMEs) which play a vital role in the region’s business landscape. To provide increased lending to this important segment, the Bank revised the terms for key products related to working capital and asset-based finance. Additionally, the Bank improved the digitization and automation of the lending process, including the deployment of prescoring models to streamline credit processing.

The integration of sustainability into KCB’s strategy has enabled the Bank to facilitate the transition to clean energy for millions of customers and align internal practices with sustainable principles. Last year, the Bank conducted environmental and social due diligence (ESDD) screenings for facilities worth KShs. 270.4 billion. In 2023, screenings have already been conducted for facilities worth KShs. 149.4 billion. The Bank applies ESDD screenings to every project exceeding KShs. 50 million, ensuring climate risks are thoroughly assessed.

KCB Foundation continues to make a significant impact in the communities across all the markets where the Bank operates. In 2022, the Bank expanded the flagship program, 2jiajiri, to support youth empowerment. It also enhanced humanitarian support and the education scholarship program.