I&M Bank Tanzania has said it is focusing on robust growth, and business efficiency this year following loss incurred last year.
The loss, according to the lender, stemmed from a decision to write-off and take provisions on Non-Performing Loans (NPLs) in line with the Bank of Tanzania (BoT) guidelines.
The bank’s results announced in Nairobi, Kenya and distributed in Dar es Salaam at the weekend show that despite the 13.5bn/- loss reported last year, the Bank has for the past five years recorded an improvement in performance with total assets growing by 17 per cent in 2022 to 597bn/- from 511bn/- prior year.
“The NPLs were driven by the adverse impact of the Covid-19 pandemic, global inflation and the difficult operating environment impact on our customers,” the I&M Bank Tanzania Chief Executive Officer, Mr Zahid Mustafa said while commenting on the bank’s results.
I&M Group recognised the good growth in top-line numbers made by I&M Bank Tanzania on the back of a robust increase in customer deposits and loans.
Net loans and advances grew by 6.0 per cent to 366bn/- from 345bn/- in 2021, driven by corporate, mortgage and digital loans.
The bank customers’ deposits grew by 37 per cent to 450bn/- from 329bn/- the year before, driven by corporate and retail customers.
Net interest income increased by 26 per cent to 31.8bn/- from 25.3bn/- the prior year and non-funded income increased by 24 per cent to 11.6bn/- from 9.4bn/- in 2021.
Mr Mustafa, who joined I&M Tanzania late last year, further stated that the bank has plans to diversify its business by introducing differentiated retail and digital banking propositions for its customers in the country, improving customer experience, enhancing operational efficiencies and expanding the customer base to drive growth which requires significant investments in people and technology.
To this end, the Group has injected capital of 6 million US dollars in the first half of the fiscal year 2023.
Mr Mustafa emphasised that I&M remains committed to its customers and the country with sound underlying business fundamentals derived from the Group’s iMara 2.0 strategy to drive growth, supported by a strong Group balance sheet and capital structure.
“The bank is compliant with regulatory provisions and remains confident that its strategy will continue to deliver better results for its customers and shareholders now and into the future”, said Mr Mustafa.
“We are on track to launch new ventures in both the corporate and retail spaces such as revamping our employee banking proposition and digital platforms with the introduction of an agency banking platform dubbed ‘WAKALA’,” he added.
In the next five years, I&M Bank expects to graduate into a first-tier lender driven by balance sheet growth underpinned by profitable growth in the customer base, product expansion and operational efficiency.
I&M Tanzania optimism is buoyed by the overall potential of the banking industry in Eastern Africa with promising growth on the back of the attractiveness of the industry.
Increasing competition is a testament to the potential for additional growth and that investments are safe and investor wealth is protected.