Banking institutions in Kenya and all over the world are indispensable to the economy as well as the financial position of a country. They provide lending and savings opportunities including other important services to individuals and corporate entities.
Banks continue growing their assets as the economy expands and despite the often-experienced unfavorable and harsh operating environment, others are beating the odds to stay at the top.
Over the past two years, things have been challenging for Kenyan banks especially since the introduction of the new cap in lending. However, this has not stopped them from making profits. In fact, the capping of interest only affected their loan books since banks refrained from lending to SMEs and individuals citing high risk.
This means that despite the tighter lending environment, banks have found alternative routes and sources of revenue.
The banks have adopted smart and digital ways of reaching out to the customer through new channels.
Banks in the country, however, have taken advantage of the relatively robust growth despite challenges posed by the interest rate framework. Even though more regulatory challenges still remain, other banks are still expanding their asset base.
The power in banking in Kenya is unquestionably shifting towards Kenya Commercial Bank (KCB) whose asset base surpasses that of all other banks in the country. It ranks as the first bank in Kenya by assets.
KCB’s full-year results for 2018 showed that its asset base stood at 714.31 billion shillings, a 10.5 percent growth from the 2017/2018 financial year.
Although by holding the top financial position by assets doesn’t mean it has the highest concentration of wealth, it shows that a lot of the country’s wealth flowing through the bank.
In second place is Equity Bank, which, according to its 2018 full year financial results, its asset base stood at 573.38 billion shillings.
This was a notable increase from the 2017 full year financials where the balance sheet registered 524.5 billion shillings. According to the bank, the growth was due to its commitment “pursuing to navigate the headwinds of the slow growth rate of the private sector credit.”
In the third position is the merger between NIC Bank and Commercial Bank of Africa (CBA) which brings the total assets of the consolidated bank to 444 billion shillings since NIC Bank posted 208.50 billion shillings as CBA registered 242.56 billion shillings in their balance sheets as evidenced by the 2018 financial results.
In the fourth position is the Co-operative Bank of Kenya with assets worth 413.41 billion shillings as of 2018. Diamond Trust Bank comes in fifth with assets worth 377.72 billion ahead of Barclays Bank with an asset base of 324.84 billion shillings.
The CFC Stanbic Bank makes it to the 7th position with 290.57 billion shillings worth of assets followed by the Standard Chartered Bank whose assets stood at 285.40 billion at the end of the 2018 financial results.
The rest of the banks that follow the Standard Chartered Bank according to the 2018 financials (unless otherwise indicated) are as follows. The asset base amount is in shillings.
The financials were sourced from the banks’ websites with comparisons from www.rich.co.ke.
More than ten registered banks in Kenya do not show in the list because they have not updated their financials in a while. There were no recent data to show how their balance sheet ranks.