Guided by its 2023 organizational priorities, NCBA Group remains on track towards growth

Even though the global economic and business landscape in 2023 was marked by uncertainty and change, which posed significant challenges for most sectors, NCBA Group demonstrated remarkable resilience, adaptability and growth.

As per the Group’s Integrated Report, NCBA’s success was significantly guided by decisions and actions aimed to create a sustainable and profitable business model. Over the preceding four years, the group has progressed well on its NCBA 1.0: Going for the Top, 2020-2024 Strategy.

In the Integrated Report, John Gachora, the Group MD, NCBA, states that as part of the firm’s journey to become a distinguished brand known for customer experience, the financial services provider deployed an aggressive service level improvement drive and subsequently delivered higher customer satisfaction as noted through its impressive net promoter scores (NPS) of 85% up by 5%.

(TOP: John Gachora, the Group MD, NCBA, during a previous event).

“To solidify our customer promise, the NCBA Way of serving customers was clearly defined and immersed across the Group, and the Service Charter was relaunched in October. As a confirmation of these efforts, NCBA scooped four awards in 2023 under Customer Experience,” stated Mr Gachora.

The group’s objective to strategically expand its retail banking portfolio remains on course. In 2023, NCBA opened eight new branches in Kenya, raising its branch footprint to a total of 92 across 26 counties. In the regional markets, the group opened new branches in Rwanda and Uganda bringing the total Group footprint to an extensive branch network of 109 branches at year end.

In order to bring its services closer to customers, the group rolled out an agency banking programme which on-boarded an additional 476 agents across all 47 counties in Kenya.

“In line with our strategic pillar to deepen leadership in asset finance, we have successfully built a moat around our asset finance business and retained our Number 1 position with a 34% market share. Through this business, we enabled over 6,000 customers to take up vehicle loans worth Kshs 25 billion, a 9% growth from prior year. Our industry leadership of the car ecosystem was enhanced by title sponsorship of NCBA-Kenya Motor Industry Association (KMI) Motor Show in Nairobi where almost 10,000 car enthusiasts gathered to explore the latest vehicle technologies and make purchasing decisions,” disclosed Gachora.

The bank also re-launched its CarDuka e-commerce platform to match sellers and buyers of vehicle and auto related equipment, a move  that delivered 50% annual growth. During the 17th edition of Johari Awards, more than 1,000 partners activated the CarDuka platform.

On the sustainability front, the group continued to onboard new customers benefiting from the allocated Kshs 2 billion towards financing of Electric Vehicles (EVs) and Kshs 500 million towards financing of Solar Photovoltaic (PV) systems.

2023 also saw the bank maintain its position as the Number 2 Corporate Bank in East Africa with a substantial deposit base of Kshs 253 billion (indicating a 20% YoY growth) while growing cross border corporate relationships across the region by 29%. The sectoral anchored business model culminated in notable improvement in the Bank’s market share in key sectors such as Diplomatic Missions (60%), Insurance Companies (26%) and the SACCO sector (12.6%).

To achieve its Digital Transformation strategic objectives, NCBA in 2023 enhanced its mobile and internet banking platforms, enabling it to deliver a 53% increase in revenue from these platforms. Notably, the integration of the NCBA Investment Bank services on the mobile app accelerated strong growth in Assets under Management to Kshs 52 billion in 2023 (translating to a 21% growth year-on-year).

NCBA continued to support over 60 million customers across Africa to access micro-lending and savings, disbursing Kshs 930 billion of loans, an increase of 28% year-on-year.

“At the heart of our success lies the dedication, talent and hard work of our colleagues. Management has remained committed to providing an environment where every individual has the opportunity to thrive and unleash their potential. In 2023, we continued to foster a high-performance employee culture by driving greater focus on learning hours (learning hours increased 110% year-on-year) and by promoting 448 colleagues across the group to greater responsibility,” stated the group’s MD in the 2023 Integrated Report.

“As an organization, we are proud that gender balance and diversity have been maintained at a Male to Female staff ratio of 49:51. These collective efforts to invest in the well-being of our colleagues boosted employee engagement scores to 88% (vs 82% in the prior year), and NCBA was recognized as the 2023 Employer of the Year Awards and as the 2nd Runner up under the Great Workplace Environment category.”

2023 Priorities and Financial Outcomes

The growth trajectory for the Group remained solid compared to 2022 driven by positive operating income and elevated profitability of the regional subsidiaries. NCBA Group posted a profit after tax of Kshs 21.5 billion, a 56% increase year-on-year. The regional subsidiaries – that isvTanzania, Rwanda, and Uganda – collectively delivered a profit before tax of Kshs 3.0 billion, a notable improvement from the loss of Kshs 308 million posted in Full Year 2022. The enhanced regional banking subsidiaries’ profit contribution of 14% was driven by the Group’s turnaround strategy in Tanzania through recalibration of the business model and a rightsizing of the operating models in Uganda and Rwanda to accelerate growth.

According to the Mr Gachora, the strong financial results in 2023 were driven by the execution of the 2023 organizational priorities, that is: Balance Sheet Optimisation; Accelerated Customer Growth; Embed Risk and Control Culture; Increased Regional Subsidiaries Contribution; and Defined Sustainability Agenda.

NCBA’s balance sheet optimization efforts have delivered an increased yield on earning assets of 11.7% up from 10.1% with Net Interest Margin increasing from 5.7% to 6.1% and subsequently a 12%growth in Net Interest Income year-on-year. Through these comprehensive initiatives, the group sustained value creation and strengthened its competitive market positioning as the third largest bank based on customer deposits and assets.

On regional subsidiaries, the diligent execution of its strategic initiatives propelled growth in profitability by more than 100% year- on-year. A significant highlight on the balance sheet was the substantial growth in deposits, which surged from Kshs 47 billion in December 2022 to Kshs 65 billion by December 2023. Net loans and advances increased from Kshs 29 billion to Kshs 41 billion yet retaining quality with reduction in non-performing loans from 12% to 8% year-on-year.

Building on the gains of 2022, the group accelerated customer acquisition to the core bank, driving deposit mobilization up by 15% in 2023 supported by a 20% increase in customer numbers. NCBA strategically targeted diverse customer profiles by elevating its proposition to business clients to cover large commercial entities, small and medium enterprises (SMEs) as well as micro businesses. On individual customers, the group focused on high opportunity sectors to enhance inclusivity across board through various acquisition and retention initiatives in Kenya and abroad. By implementing these strategies, the group expanded its customer base to over 60 million customers both at the core bank and digital businesses.

On the Risk and Controls priority, the Group faced strong macroeconomic headwinds driven by both financial market pressures locally and globally. In this environment, the progress made on strengthening the balance sheet has ensured that the quality of the group’s credit book remains stronger than market peers, with an NPL ratio of 12.1% (compared to 14.8% in the industry). In 2023, NCBA focused on an organization-wide initiative to enhance the control environment in the Group. Through this process, the group has built a collective understanding of its risk culture and ambition, while establishing departmental level forums for more robust engagement on risk matters.

With insurance increasingly becoming a basic financial need for the type of customers served, NCBA announced its intention to acquire 100% of AIG Kenya Insurance Company . By bringing together NCBA’s physical and digital distribution platforms and AIG Kenya’s insurance capabilities, the transaction (now completed) is expected to unlock the Group`s ambition to become a universal bank and catalyze deeper market penetration of insurance in Kenya and the region.


In 2023, NCBA embarked on a Group-wide, in-depth research and capacity building exercise to situate its sustainability imperative in line with the opportunities arising from a defined strategic response on environmental, social and governance (ESG) factors material to its business operations. This culminated in the launch of its sustainability transformation agenda “Change the Story” in August 2023. Change the Story is anchored on five strategic pillars and a set of 15 bold commitments. This includes a commitment to earmark Kshs 100 million annually for community transformation and engagement. In the same year, the group scholarships to the value of Kshs 11.1 million, for academically talented and underprivileged students.

“Further, we committed to grow 10 million trees by 2030, which we view as critical to enhancing Africa’s ability to counter the negative impacts of climate change. To achieve this, we have leveraged strategic partnerships with private sector actors and the Government to amplify our tree-growing programme. In 2023, NCBA planted a total of 344,437 trees and cumulatively planted over 7 million trees since 2018,” noted Gachora.

As part of the Group’s commitment to mobilize Kshs 30 billion of Green and Sustainable Financing, NCBA partnered with Proparco, a subsidiary of the AFD Group, to unlock a $50 million facility. The funding is aimed to foster sustainable economic development and to promote diversity, equity, and inclusion. And its efforts to hold itself accountable to while working towards the attainment its goals, NCBA Group has signed up for the UN Global Compact membership.


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