Equity Bank Reports 14% Loss in Loan Provisions as Digital Channels Remain Steady

The Group increased its loan loss provision tenfold to Kshs. 3 billion from Kshs. 300 million the previous year leading to a decline of profit after tax by 14% from Kshs. 6.2 billion to 5.3 billion for the same period last year.


Lender Equity group has releases first-quarter results for 2020. The results are based on the uncertainties related to Coronavirus, including an overall 14% drop in profit after tax on KES 3 billion provision of loans. The loss is a tenfold drop to KES 3 billion from KES 300 million in the same period in 2019.

However, profits before provisions grew by 10% to KES 10 billion from KES 9.1 billion registered in the same period in 2019.

Equity says it enjoyed notable growth in total assets that recorded a 14% YoY growth to KES 693.2 billion from KES 605.7 billion. This development has been attributed to a 17% jump in customer deposits to KES 499.3 billion from KES 428.5 billion.

On the whole, the lender’s total income rose by 13% to KES 19.7 billion from 17.5 billion in Q1 2019.

Forex trading grew by 34% to KES 1.1 billion from KES 815 million recorded in the same period in the previous year. 26.5% of the volume traded was from diaspora flows.

Furthermore, the bank reports growth in diaspora remittance commissions to KES 234 million from KES 192 million registered in Q1 2019. The volume of remittances jumped by 31% to KES 40.6 billion.

Other areas that saw growth include merchant banking commission (up by 11%) and merchant banking volume that hit KES 29 billion.

Brick and mortar infrastructure of branches and ATMs are becoming less popular with time as they processed 6% of the Group’s banking transactions.

Mobile and internet banking processes 79% of all transactions. Agents and merchants processed 15% of transactions, which reflect the bank’s ascent to digital services and products.

CEO James Mwangi

The global COVID-19 pandemic has mutated into a global economic crisis, occasioned by a sudden standstill of economic activity as a result of the global lockdown. This has introduced unprecedented uncertainty within the global financial systems prompting us to adopt a conservative approach – fortifying our balance sheet and assuring ample liquidity to support our customers.