KCB to spend KES 1 billion on funding livestock farming
01 August 2014, 08:39
Nairobi – The Kenya Commercial Bank (KCB) has set aside a revolving fund of KES 1 billion to fund livestock farmers in arid and semi-arid areas across the country to help commercialize the sector through its KCB Foundation dubbed Mifugo ni Biashara.
KCB Group CEO, Joshua Oigara said the programme is aimed at accelerating the eradication of extreme poverty in the nation and added that the bank will work closely with county governments to ensure the initiative is a success.
“The programme which kicked off in Baringo County is to be rolled out to all 47 counties next year. Going forward, county governments must come up with long-term plans for the sector in enabling livestock keepers to retain a higher proportion of the end price shall be the catalyst for change,” said Oigara.
He asserted that the Foundation neither targets KCB’s customers but all citizens in marginalized areas to take part in livestock farming depending on the region’s type of animals reared.
“Kwale County will be the next beneficiary of the programme because we have engaged with its leaders and have shown interest to partner with KCB. County governments already have their own livestock economy plans in place and it’s out of their choice to partner with KCB’s Foundation,”Oigara stated.
The CEO also revealed that the bank has partnered with Safaricom to facilitate expansion and ease access to credit facilities dubbed Biashara@smart using mobile phones by Micro and Small and Medium Enterprises (SMEs).
“Through this partnership, KCB and Safaricom are looking towards reaching 1 million small business traders in the next six months which will revolutionize the way micro and SMEs operate their business. It allows entrepreneurs to access capital, scale up their growth and build on their capacity in their business,” said Oigara.
Despite the witnessed the political unrest in South Sudan that has affected KCB’s operations, Oigara said two additional branches will be opened in Juba in August since business has started to pick up.
He noted that the international business contributed 7.3% to the bank’s profits in its announced 16% increase in half-year pretax profit of KES 11.7 billion adding that the Group plans to roll out mobile banking and agency services to the subsidiaries in the next quarter.
KCB Group Chairman, Ngeny Biwott said the bank’s good performance happens after receiving ‘Best Bank in Kenya’ award by Euromoney.
“This prestigious recognition is a very positive reflection on the significant progress that we have made over the past few years to grow our business in the East African region through innovation, partnerships and new business lines,” said Biwott.
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