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NBS Bank sees bright future

Malawi Stock Exchange-listed NBS Bank says it remains optimistic of a brighter future buoyed by strategies deployed in 2017.
In a statement last week, NBS projects that its financial performance for 2017 will be 70 percent better than that recorded in 2016.
NBS Bank Chief Executive Officer, Kwanele Ngwenya, said in an interview that the K11.8 billion rights issue the bank made mid this year, coupled with the five-year strategic plan adopted, would help the bank to make a turn around.
“You may recall that the bank had not been performing very well for some years and, in our assessment, we discovered that employing the same strategy would not give us different results. This is why we decided we should change course by developing a new five-year strategic plan as agenesis to turning around the organisation.
“In this exercise, we roped in our technical partner, Rabobank of the Netherlands, so we could benefit from their first world banking experience,” Ngwenya said.
He said the strategic plan was implemented in January and has started bearing fruits, adding that NBS is now becoming more agile and customer-centric and more robust in risk management and innovation.
Ngwenya added that, before the rights issue, inadequate capital had incapacitated the bank from taking up opportunities that the environment offered and also from adequately responding to the intense competition in the Malawian banking industry.
He said NBS Bank was unable to make necessary investments to catch up with the rapid changes in the Malawian banking environment.
“We were, therefore, losing relevance to the customer, which in turn had a negative effect on some of our major income lines, like the lending business. Loss of revenue in such income streams obviously impacted our bottom line and led us to the loss that was declared in the recent past.
“This is why we decided to raise extra capital through rights issue, which, as you know, was the most successful rights issue in Malawi to date, raising K11.8 billion,” Ngwenya said.
NBS Bank is a fully fledged commercial bank providing a wide range of financial services to individuals, small and medium businesses, large corporations and public institutions.
The bank was incorporated as a limited company on March 14 2003 and was registered under the Banking Act 1989 on March 1 2004. It started its commercial banking operations on July 1 2004.
NBS Bank has Nico Holdings as its majority shareholder with 50 percent stake, followed by Continental Holdings Limited at 27 percent, general public at 15 percent, IFC with five percent, Continental Asset Managers Limited with two percent and National Investment Trust Limited with one percent.

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