BY KABELO SEITSHIRO
Unshackled from Barclays UK, the local unit of the Absa Group ÔÇô Barclays Bank Botswana this week presented its first ever full year results following the divorce from the former parent company in 2018. The bank’s financials shows that it realised a Profit before tax (PBT) of P638 million for the year ending 31st December 2018. This represents a year-on-year growth in profitability of 14 percent in comparison to the previous year on a normalised reporting basis.
Commenting on the results, outgoing Managing Director of the local banking unit – Reinette van der Merwe said the bank’s balance sheet continues to be driven by loans and advances and customer liabilities which speak to the primary drivers of the total revenue.
Barclays’s Loans and advances to customers increased by 10 percent year-on-year to P11.8 billion ahead of 8 percent market growth according to the latest financials. The figures further show that this was mainly driven by the Retail and Corporate segments.
The Finance Director of the local unit – Mumba Kalifungwa said operating costs were well contained with the business achieving a cost to income ratio of 52 percent on removing the effect of Barclays plc separation costs.
Following a split from its former parent Barclays, HYPERLINK “https://www.fin24.com/Companies/Financial-Services/absa-reboots-image-as-barclays-ends-100-year-history-in-africa-20180711” Absa has rebranded its operations in South Africa, reshuffled management and refreshed its strategy with the ambition of doubling its market share in Africa.
The pan African bank has a presence in 11 African countries that together represent a third of the continent’s gross domestic product.
In Botswana, the bank says the the transition towards adopting the parent company name – Absa and brand is progressing well.
“This separation of our operations from Barclays is a large and complex programme, executed gradually across systems, platforms, policies, procedures and more”, said the incoming managing director ÔÇô Keabetswe Pheko ÔÇô Moshagane.
Moshagane said that the bank is in the process of delivering a combination of standard lift-and-drop solutions, noteworthy systems refresh, and some substantial transformation.
“The separation process has been the catalyst for a significant strategic and cultural reset of our organisation”, she said.