Barclays reassures customers amid name change, staff exits


Barclays Bank Kenya MD Jeremy Awori during the release of the lender’s full year financial results on March 1, 2018. PHOTO | SALATON NJAU | NMG

Barclays Bank of Kenya (BBK) #ticker:BBK has moved to put its customers at ease as it eyes introduction of new products to align with a planned rebrand.

“One of the most important things is that we move with agility and speed to be able to provide products and services that our customers want, and given now that we have this flexibility, agility and freedom, we are looking forward to bringing in even more relevant products to our customers,” MD Jeremy Awori said in Mombasa last week.

Johannesburg-based Barclays Africa Group is seeking regulatory approval to change its name to Absa Group, a move that is expected to affect its Kenya operations.

The lender also revealed last week that it closed 2017 with 2,268 employees on its payroll, down from 2,591 in 2016.

Most left as part of a Sh500 million restructuring that saw Barclays close 12 branches in Kenya, most of them in Nairobi.

“There is opportunity for business that we believe as a Kenyan business we can be able to do given that we are much more an African business now with decision being able to be taken in Africa,” he said.

He said Absa is one of the biggest banking groups in Africa with a balance sheet of $100 billion - bigger than the GDP of Kenya - with over 11 million customers and operating over 10,000 ATMs across the continent.

“Its ambitions between five to ten years are to double its business in Africa...we want to become the largest banking group in Africa, and there is no way we can achieve that without us becoming significantly bigger in Kenya,” he said.

Mr Awori was speaking at Fort Jesus during the tee-off of the Coast region golf tour for the Barclays Kenya Open ahead of the regional tournament at the Nyali Golf Club.

The event to promote the country’s iconic sites was also sponsored by the Nation Media Group #ticker:NMG and the Kenya Tourism Board.

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