Victoria Bank keeps bad loans at zero per cent

Victoria Bank chief executive Yogesh Pattni. FILE PHOTO | NMG
Victoria Bank chief executive Yogesh Pattni. FILE PHOTO | NMG 

Victoria Commercial Bank has maintained its record as the lender with the smallest non-performing loan book in Kenya, its managers said.

Yogesh Pattni, the chief executive, said on Wednesday that the bank had kept an outstanding record of running a zero per cent bad loans book in the past 11 years, putting it in a class of its own.

Dr Pattni said Victoria Commercial had survived 2017’s difficult operating environment to grow its profit and increase its profile among potential investors.

This, he said, is the reason the shareholders oversubscribed the banks rights issue in 2016 when the confidence in the banking sector was at its lowest.

Dr Pattni spoke on Wednesday evening at dinner event to officially welcome on board Swedish firm Swedfund which has just pumped Sh500 million ($5m) capital into the bank for onward lending to Small and Medium-sized Enterprises (SMEs).

He said the new partnership “is an indication that smaller banking institutions can also have DFI’s as partners with proper and credible management”.

Swedfund is a development finance institution with vast interests in Sub-Sahara’s SME market and Dr Pattni said “Victoria was happy to be a conduit for increased disbursement of loans to the SME sector, which is a key drive of economic growth and job creation in Kenya”.

Victoria Bank is best known for its relationship-based niche private banking model targeted at corporate, high net worth individuals and SMEs.

Dr Pattni said Swedfund’s seven-year loan will be used to recapitalise the bank to increase its ability to lend to SMEs.