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Stanbic SME lending grows by Sh23.5bn on digital transactions

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A Stanbic bank branch in Nairobi. FILE PHOTO | NMG

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Summary

  • The latest Stanbic Holding Report to Society shows the loans grew from Sh10.3 billion in 2018 to Sh33.8 billion last year, representing a 128.2 per cent growth.
  • SMEs have been hard hit by the economic fallout of the Covid-19 pandemic — underlining their need for new financing to keep their operations afloat.
  • Several lenders, including Equity #ticker:EQTY and KCB #ticker:KCB, have also lined up funding for small businesses.

Stanbic Bank’s #ticker:SBIC lending to small and medium enterprises (SMEs) grew by Sh23.5 billion last year, new data shows, buoyed by the convenience of digital transactions.

The latest Stanbic Holding Report to Society shows the loans grew from Sh10.3 billion in 2018 to Sh33.8 billion last year, representing a 128.2 per cent growth.

“Of the loans disbursed, this equates to an additional Sh23.5 billion being released into the economy, up from Sh10.3 billion in 2018,” the 2019 Report to Society shows.

Out of Sh33.8 billion, Sh9.6 billion was invested outside of these businesses last year, which is an increase from Sh4.2 billion in 2018.

SMEs have been hard hit by the economic fallout of the Covid-19 pandemic — underlining their need for new financing to keep their operations afloat.

In September, the Treasury announced that it would provide a Sh10 billion commercial loans to SMEs amid an economic fallout arising from the coronavirus pandemic.

The funds, which were approved by the Cabinet, will be disbursed in two tranches of Sh5 billion each in the year to next June and the other in the 2021/22 period.

Under the scheme, the State will pay an undisclosed percentage of the losses in case an SME defaults on a commercial loan, a move that reduces the risk associated with lending to small businesses.

Several lenders, including Equity #ticker:EQTY and KCB #ticker:KCB, have also lined up funding for small businesses.

Equity Banks’ borrowed funds jumped 19.7 per cent to Sh68.5 billion over the three months to September as development finance institutions began disbursing cash for onward lending to small businesses.

The bank had received commitments from the World Bank’s private-sector lending arm International Finance Corporation (IFC) and Agence Française de Développement Group’s Proparco for billion shilling loans to lend to small and medium enterprises.

The IFC pledged a $50 million (Sh5 billion) loan while Proparco committed to a $100 million (Sh10 billion) partnership with Equity.