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Dubai Bank raids Kenyan rivals for top management

Dubai Islamic Bank (DIB) managing director Peter Makau (left), head of retail and business banking Dan Omoro (centre) and Sharia manager Jaafar Mohamed Aman during the launch of a new DIB Mobile Banking platform at the bank’s head office in Nairobi yesterday. photo | salaton njau | nmg
Dubai Islamic Bank (DIB) managing director Peter Makau (left), head of retail and business banking Dan Omoro (centre) and Sharia manager Jaafar Mohamed Aman during the launch of a new DIB Mobile Banking platform at the bank’s head office in Nairobi yesterday. photo | salaton njau | nmg 

Giant Gulf lender Dubai Islamic Bank’s local subsidiary, DIB Bank Kenya, has hired top executives from leading local rivals, taking its total staff count to 112 as it seeks to gain a toe-hold in the Kenyan market 13 months after its launch.

The Dubai government-owned Upperhill-headquartered financier has poached three staff from tier one lender Barclays Bank of Kenya #ticker:BBK , (BBK), as well as top executives from Stanbic Bank Kenya and Gulf African Bank to help its bid to exclusively offer Shariah compliant banking services in Kenya.

DIB Bank Kenya managing director Peter Mule Makau joined the lender from United Bank for Africa Tanzania, where he was also the MD.

Dan Amaro formerly of Stanbic Bank is the lender’s new head of retail and business banking while Susan Kitani formerly of Gulf Bank is the bank’s new head of credit.

The lender’s new head of product development and marketing Donald Kimathi, head of HR Chris Huka and head of risk Silas Ogada are all former top executives of Barclays.

DIB’s formal entry into the Kenyan market last June was expected to shake up locally-owned Islamic lenders that have faced little competition in the segment for a decade.

Thursday DIB chief executive Mr Makau said the lender which has so far pumped Sh3.3 billion in its Kenyan operations would leverage on its financial muscle as it seeks to claim a piece of the fast growing Islamic banking market.

“In Kenya we have adopted the same highly successful growth strategy that has propelled the group to the formidable global position it enjoys today,” said Mr Makau when the lender launched a new mobile wallet.

“Essentially our strategy is to position the bank as a leading player for exclusively Shariah compliant banking services for the wider market in Kenya and subsequently the larger East Africa region.”

As at December last year DIB which is UAE’s largest bank, had an asset base of $56.3 billion (Sh5.63 trillion), dwarfing the Kenyan banking industry whose total asset base stood at $36.9 billion (about Sh3.7 trillion) as at 2016.

Kenya had until DIB’s entry only two fully-fledged Islamic banks, while five other conventional lenders have been offering Shariah-compliant services and products through “Islamic Windows”.

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