The Kintampo Rural Bank Limited, headquartered at Kintampo in the Bono East Region, has targetted a year-on-year deposit growth of 50% to build a robust financial base so as to advance more long-term loans for businesses, Martin Mensah-General Manager of the bank, has disclosed.
The ambitious deposit-growth target forms part of the bank’s broad vision after 40 years of its existence. To help achieve this aim, Mr. Mensah said the bank has initiated a massive expansion plan, starting with opening a branch in Kumasi that is expected to be operational at latest by end of 2019.
“After four decades in the rural banking industry, the bank is looking beyond its immediate environment. We want to make our services easily accessible to our growing customers; after the Kumasi project, we are poised for opening more branches in other viable areas like Sunyani, Damango and Tamale in the nearest future. This will help the bank to mobilise the needed deposits to give us enough financial muscle to advance long-term loans,” he told B&FT on the sidelines of a symposium the bank organised at Techiman for business operators, customers and shareholders.
The symposium was one of the activities earmarked for the bank’s 40th anniversary celebrations. It had earlier held similar seminars at Jema and Kintampo. Other outlined activities for the year-long celebrations include a public health talk and free medical screening, an inter-school science and mathematics quiz, and a dinner/awards ceremony.
In a presentation, Mr. Mensah said the bank has developed a healthy operational strategy, aimed at meeting all the regulator’s requirements in every financial year, adding that efforts are being made to significantly increase the assets base and other performance indicators to consolidate its growth.
Emphasising the bank’s financial performance, he noted that: “Liquid assets to total assets ratio stood at 42.87% as at january31, 2019. Credit to deposit ratio is 53.34% as at the end of January this year, as compared to the 60% benchmark. This demonstrates that the bank is not susceptible to any liquidity challenge”.
Responding to a question about the chances of Kintampo Rural Bank listing publicly, the Vice-Board Chairman of the bank, Boyd Donkor replied: “It is a good idea, but I don’t think that is the priority now. Though we might consider listing on the Ghana Alternative Market (GAX) in the future, the bank is not in desperate need of more capital now but rather more deposits. As we speak, we have raised over GH¢2million stated capital as against the minimum capital requirement of GH¢1 million”.
Touching on corporate governance, Mr. Donkor underscored the Bank of Ghana’s need to uphold strict compliance by all banks to avert any imminent collapse of a bank in order to win back public trust and confidence in the banking industry – indicating that the recent banking crisis has really shrunk public confidence in the industry. He quizzed why some banks compromised on checks and controls as well as transparency, which he described as the crux of good corporate governance.
He reaffirmed the commitment of Kintampo Rural Bank to maintain a good control environment and protect depositors’ monies. “The bank established its corporate governance committee years before the BoG issued a directive to that effect to banks.”
The Head of Risk and Compliance-Kintampo Rural Bank, Benjamin Ofosu Okyere, took the participants through products and services of the bank and said it has introduced many innovations: such as a locked savings boxes which are given to customers in remote areas who cannot access the bank frequently. He explained that the initiative is in line with the financial inclusion agenda of government.
Kintampo Rural Bank was established in 1979 with five staff and an asset base of GH¢180,000. It has over the years grown to become one of the biggest rural banks in country. The bank as at November 2018 had an assets base of over GH¢39.19million. It was the first rural bank to be established in the country’s northern sector.