First National Bank will open five new branches this year including in Chipata, Solwezi and Chingola as it continues to extend its services in to the unbanked population. And FNB Zambia chief executive officer Sarel van Zyl has noted that the bank has achieved significant growth during its four years of business in Zambia.
Speaking in Lusaka to mark the bank’s fourth anniversary, van Zyl said the bank was very proud of the business it has achieved, offering a full suite of banking services across the country.
“We offer the full suite of banking services, including Vehicle and Asset Finance, and Home Loans. We now employ more than 370 staff and at the end of March this year, we had 100 000 active accounts. Our balance sheet has grown significantly compared with other banks that opened around the same time as we did. We’ve notched up 800 million kwacha in advances and over 1 billion kwacha in deposits,” noted van Zyl.
In the last four years, FNB Zambia has expanded to nine branches and 43 ATMs spread out over five towns. Four branches serve the capital, Lusaka, there are two in Ndola, and one each in Mazabuka, Mkushi and Kitwe.
Three new branches will open in the next 3 months in Solwezi, Chingola and Chipata, and another two will be added in the next 12 months in Livingstone and Choma, to be operational by June 2014. The bank currently has 100, 000 active accounts and notes that Zambia’s economic climate continues to be positive.
“FNB Zambia has invested USD70 million in capital in Zambia to date in addition to a significant investment in other capital and operating expenditure against the consistently strong GDP growth for a number of years. According to the latest World Bank estimates, Zambia ranks at number 17 on the top 20 list of countries in the world with the highest projected compound annual growth rate between now and 2015. These conditions, along with initiatives from the current government of President Michael Sata, are driving infrastructure development and job creation, which means ideal conditions for FNB Zambia to thrive,” added van Zyl.
FNB Zambia has recently introduced an innovative product called Bank-in-a-Bag, which enables the opening of a bank account and also the issuance of a Debit Card in remote areas of the country, right there on a customer’s premises, without the need for them to go into a branch.
In 2012, FNB Zambia received awards on numerous platforms for its financial services with a number of national awards, including Bank of the Year by the Kitwe Chamber of Commerce and Industry, Best Electronic Banking as well as Best Vehicle and Asset Finance by the Bankers Association of Zambia (BAZ).
The Zambia Institute of Marketing also recognized the bank with an award for Best Customer Service in the Financial Services Category. This year, FNB Zambia has scooped the Diamond Award, which is the highest award, with an excellent score in the category of Banks with recognition for its Business Banking by Zambia Leaders and Achievers.
On these awards and recognition, van Zyl stated that the bank operates in an environment where there are 19 commercial banks, more than 280 branches, 550 ATMs as well a population of 13.5 million.
“These achievements on the business front as well as recognition of our services and products are a testimony to the drive to succeed which exists in the bank.”