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Equity set to get Sh11bn AfDB loan

Equity-centre

Equity Centre in Nairobi upperhill. FILE PHOTO | NMG

Equity Group #ticker:EQTY is set to receive a $100 million (Sh11 billion) loan from the African Development Bank (AfDB) to shore up its capital as it seeks to grow its lending capacity.

The loan, whose interest rate was not disclosed, matures in seven years and is the latest to be tapped by the lender in recent months.

The Nairobi Securities Exchange-listed firm says it is building its capacity to lend more to small and medium-sized enterprises across its regional operations.

“We have seen the impact of pumping oxygen to our MSMEs during this period,” Equity’s chief executive James Mwangi said in a statement.

“They have been able to re-imagine, repurpose and retool their enterprises and emerged more resilient thereby protecting jobs and creating more job opportunities.”

Equity’s total capital to total risk-weighted assets had dropped to 17.7 percent in the nine months ended September compared to 21.2 percent a year earlier. The minimum ratio is set at 14.5 percent, meaning that while the bank was still above the threshold, its lending capacity had narrowed.