By Claire Wanja
The Co-operative Bank of Kenya has won the esteemed award of Bank of the Year 2015 for Financial Inclusion in The Bankers Awards run by the Financial Times of London.
The bank beat a stiff challenge from over fifty other entries from all over the world.
Speaking at the Presentation of the awards in London Bankside, Mr. Brian Caplen, Editor of The Banker magazine, said that the award to the Bank “is in recognition of the impressive work and progress made by the bank and more broadly of the contribution that the Co-operative Banking model has make to the economy and lives of people.”
Mr. Caplen gave particular recognition to the facilitative role played by the bank in strengthening the capacity of co-operatives through Co-op Consultancy Services, saying, “Aside from providing credit to small and micro entrepreneurs, the subsidiary company offers consultancy services to cooperative societies, which many households in Kenya rely upon for a number of financial transactions. The bank’s work ensures that such societies are solid, financially literate and well run, so that they can safely continue their capillary work throughout the country.”
Receiving the award, Dr. Gideon Muriuki, Group Managing Director and CEO Co-operative Bank Group said, “We are honoured and humbled to have won the Financial Times, Banker Awards 2015 ‘Bank of the Year for Financial Inclusion’. Indeed, the Co-operative Model offers a sustainable business model for inclusive growth.”
He added, “The Group deeply appreciates the over 5.7 million customers being diligently served in ‘The Kingdom Bank’ across various channels.”
The Group has successfully replicated this model in South Sudan where it is already operational under a strategic Joint Venture with the Government. Plans are advanced stage to roll-out similar programs in Rwanda, Uganda and Tanzania.