Equity Group has announced a 5% decline in profit before tax in the first quarter of the 2017 financial year.
Speaking during an investor briefing when he released the Q1 Results, Group CEO James Mwangi blamed the unstable working environment that has been characterized by drought, high food prices and high energy prices.
Mwangi said the challenges drove inflation to a five year high of 11.4%.
However, he exuded confidence that the group is well positioned to respond to emerging opportunities by focusing on SMEs, particularly in energy, infrastructure and export sectors.
The Group has now focused on extracting value from regional banking subsidiaries, non-funded income which increased by 21% from KES 5.2 Billion to KES 6.3 Billion, Efficiency and Digital Banking.
The Group exercised its ability to balance funded income versus non-funded income from a ratio of 67:33 to 58:42 by increasing non-funded income significantly.
Despite the drop, Mobile banking transactions grew by 75% to KES 308.8 Million from 176.9 Million, Trade Finance grew by 78%, Diaspora Remittances by 79%, Agency Banking by 19% and merchant commissions up by 8% to KES 279.2 Million.
The bank remains to be the most profitable bank at KES 300 Million higher than any other banks that have so far released their first quarter results.