South Africa’s Standard Bank is on a quest to become the third-largest bank in Kenya through acquisitions as part of its growth strategy.
“We have aspirations to be a top three bank in Kenya,” East Africa Regional Chief Executive Patrick Mweheire told Bloomberg.
“Number six is not acceptable. Within 12 months, we would have identified and would have started having negotiations with someone,” he said.
Currently, the lender operates in Kenya, Uganda, Tanzania, and the Democratic Republic of Congo. It has a representative office in Ethiopia.
The Johannesburg-based Standard Bank will also be seeking a full license in Ethiopia.
According to Mweheire, “It would have to buy something because organic growth does not make sense. The problem with organic is that you bleed for the first five to 10 years.”
Its Kenyan subsidiary, Stanbic Holdings, which is 75% owned by Standard Bank, reported a 26% rise in full-year net income in 2022 from the previous period.
“As the group prepares to unveil its next three-year strategy later this year, the sustained digital transformation, inclusion and diversification through leveraging on MSMEs will be critical drivers of its growth,” Nairobi-based Cytonn Investments said.