KCB Group is set to open 12 new branches in Kenya and Tanzania. This will take the total number of branches of KCB Group in the region to 510 from 498. Of the 12, six will be in Kenya while the other half will be in Tanzania.
“We already have the approval to open six branches in Kenya and six more in Tanzania this year. This will take our total number of branches in the region to 510,” said Mr. Paul Russo, CEO of KCB Group.
KCB has been keen on expanding its footprint in Tanzania with plans underway to acquire 100 percent of a local bank. KCB CEO says that the lender is keen on Tanzania given the many opportunities that exist in the market as compared to Kenya.
“Tanzania is a market we are still keen on. If an opportunity comes, we will take it. We are going ahead to open six branches in Tanzania this year. So it is a two-pronged approach, to pursue opportunities as well as scale up,” said Mr. Russo.
The announcement to open new branches comes a few days after KCB announced the forming of a special task force that will help it to recover bad loans. The team will report directly to the Group CEO Paul Ruso. The lender is rushing against time to curb the ballooning bad loan book that puts it ahead of peers.
For the 9 months to September 2022, the lender’s non-performing loans grew by 54.3 percent to 149.3 billion shillings. National Bank, a subsidiary of KCB, was the worst with the most defaulted loans at 24.5 percent of the defaulted loans.
The team will be expected to recover at least 120 billion shillings in bad loans from groups, individuals, and government entities whose loans had been downgraded as well as from corporate institutions placed under receivership.
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