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Managing Directors Desk

Managing Directors Desk

2020

MANAGEMENT OF CORONAVIRUS (COVID-19) PANDEMIC

KWFT as a responsible corporate citizen, commits to take proactive measure to prioritize safety and well-being of our staff, customers and the general public during this crisis of the Coronavirus Disease (COVID-19) which is a global pandemic that has disrupted personal and business activities.

2020 MESSAGE FROM THE KWFT, MANAGING DIRECTOR

Receive warm and hearty New Year greetings from the KWFT family. We are delighted to start the New Year and the new decade in high spirits. KWFT takes this opportunity to appreciate all our stakeholders for giving us the opportunity to serve and partner last year.

Through the many years of commendable performance, KWFT has continued to build a strong reputation as the leading Microfinance Bank designed to transform lives through sustainable financing. KWFT also prides itself on designing and delivering innovative and cost-effective solutions for our customers.

At KWFT, we devote ourselves to continually seek to maximize on efficiency and synergies in providing practical sustainable solutions to our clients. This desire has seen the Institution partner with various likeminded proficient partners to proffer various solutions in various portfolios such as savings, enterprise financing, micro-housing, water harvesting, clean and renewable energy, micro-insurance and agribusiness.

As a dynamic Institution, KWFT has been recognized as a market leader in women & youth empowerment, sustainable financing and in agribusiness, and has received several awards and recognitions in the industry.  Top among the awards was the highly competitive SFI Catalyst Awards 2019 by the Kenya Bankers Association (KBA) which had 47 entries from 14 financial institutions. The awards are put together to recognize and celebrate institutions that practice catalytic finance which has a direct impact on the financial industry, economy and the society at large. KWFT received four awards in the following categories: Best in Promoting Gender Inclusivity, Most Improved Bank Award, Financing Small Medium Enterprises and Best Overall Bank Award.

In 2020, KWFT is keen on encouraging Kenyans to save for their goals and thus I extend an invitation to everyone to visit our branches to discuss with our teams on how this can be made possible through our competitive savings products.

KWFT looks forward to building a more efficient and profitable 2020 with all its stakeholders, to ensure that the Institution provides great value as we focus on our greatest opportunities for sustainable financial inclusion.

Lastly, I wish to extend my wishes for a happy, healthy and a prosperous New Year!

2018

HOUSING FINANCE FORUM 2018

A team from KWFT was privileged to attend the Housing Finance Forum 2018 organized by Habitat’s Terwilliger Center for Innovation in Shelter in partnership with the Mastercard Foundation. The event was held from 10th – 12th July 2018 in Kampala, Uganda.

The event was well attended by partners from various institutions, some of the key guest who made key note speeches were: Ruch Dueck –Mbeba, Senior Program Manager, Finance Inclusion at the MasterCard Foundation and Tjada McKenna, Chief Operating Officer of Habitat for Humanity International among other peers in the industry.

The convention was put together to discuss the fundamental theme on Expanding Access to Affordable and Adequate Housing in Sub-Saharan Africa. It also presented a great opportunity to discuss a myriad matters on the macroeconomic environment, regulations and policies that drive the expansion of housing microfinance in Sub-Saharan Africa. In addition various players in the industry got an opportunity to share their experiences in financing micro housing; some of the topics discussed were:

  1. The business case for housing microfinance – achieving the double bottom line.
  2. Market-level levers to support the expansion of housing microfinance portfolios.
  3. Institutional levers – opportunities and challenges to expand housing microfinance portfolios.
  4. Segment levers – expanding affordable housing products and services to new market niches.
  5. Unlocking adequate funding to expand affordable housing markets in Africa.
  6. Housing microfinance improving the quality of life of low income households.
  7. The impact of affordable housing finance to improve quality of life of low income families.
  8. Intergrading different housing value chain stakeholders to expand affordable and adequate housing in Africa.
  9. Entrepreneurship to support the expansion of affordable and adequate hosing solutions.
  10. The affordable housing landscape in sub-Saharan Africa in the forthcoming years.

When you look at a family set up some of the most important aspects include food and security, consequently security comes with having a decent place to rest at the end of the day. This need compelled the Institution to partner with a like minded partner to impact lives, hence the Nyumba Smart Product – this is a product designed to meet the housing needs of the low-income clients who form a major part of overall KWFT clients.

The KWFT Nyumba Smart product commenced in 2014 and it has had over 52,000 borrowers who have taken up the loan thus totaling up to over Ksh 3.5 Billion. It finances construction of a new house, renovation or repair, expansion or building the house incrementally, construction and improvement of sanitation facilities among other housing needs.

Housing Microfinance evokes a lot of emotion owing to the tremendous impact it has had to the lives of thousands of families. As an Institution we have received overwhelming feedback from our clients on how the product has transformed their lives and above all given them dignity.

At KWFT we shall continue with our social mission agenda as we plan to finance many more units over the next five years. This life changing product is also in support of the National Government big 4 Agenda on providing affordable housing. The products positive uptake shows that Housing Microfinance has a great potential for economic development.

2018 MESSAGE FROM THE KWFT, MANAGING DIRECTOR

Happy New Year and warm greetings as we begin 2018!

We are a few days into the New Year, and I would like us to reflect on 2017 as we forge ahead to a bright and vibrant New Year.

2017 was quite a year for all of us and we acknowledge that it was a tough year for the financial industry as well as to most entrepreneurs in Kenya mainly due to the tough operating environment that was caused by the political uncertainty that clouded the country for the better part of the year. This notwithstanding, I commend our esteemed clients for showing resilience even through the tough times. Amid the economic downturn, I am hopeful that 2018 will bring forth great opportunities for businesses to thrive so as to drive our economy to greater heights. But this will only be possible with continued unity, dedication and hard work.

In spite of the tough challenges in the industry, KWFT remained focused on its mandate hence we were able achieve a lot of developments and great achievements that positioned the Institution as a leader in the Microfinance sector.

Last year alone KWFT won over 40 awards both in the International and National arena in appreciation of our commitment in empowering the women and youth of this great Nation. We were also very honoured that the President, HE Uhuru Kenyatta, also made a visit to our stand at the Nyeri ASK show and commended the Institution for supporting small scale farmers and entrepreneurs and especially in value addition ventures.

Being competitive to seize opportunities, the Institution relaunched one of its products that aimed at offering affordable unsecured financing to salaried employees’ national wide. The campaign was meticulously executed and many salaried customers benefitted from this product.

A good name comes with great responsibilities, and KWFT being a market leader and an authority on women empowerment especially in financial inclusion, saw KWFT being selected to participate in the Nation Leadership Forum. This Forum provided a platform to spotlight issues affecting Kenyans by provoking international, regional and local discussions, shaping opinions and policy directions critical to the development and growth of the country. During the forum I participated as one of the panelist demystifying the topic on ‘The Gender Dilemma’ which is a pertinent issue in Kenya. Follow this conversation on Gender Dilemma on, https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=YcXd-YLOPak

In 2018 we remain focused on improving the livelihoods of our esteemed clients by ensuring that all our products and services are aligned with the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) to foster the eradication of poverty, protect the planet and ensure that all people enjoy peace and prosperity.

Innovation is a key focus in the Institution and this year we shall roll out Mobile Loans (M- Loan) to provide convenience and flexibility to our clients enabling them access credit on the go. I also wish to encourage our clients to explore the use of various KWFT alternative channels and payment systems designed to make banking easier such as; ATMs, Mobile Banking, Agency Banking, PesaLink , Electronic Funds Transfer (EFTs), Real-time Gross Settlement (RTGS) as well as Money transfer services (Western union, MoneyGram, Mpesa, Airtel Money)

I am confident that with alliances with like-minded partners, KWFT will be able to provide life touching products and services to support our clients in various aspects such as in trainings, affordable housing, agribusiness ventures, value addition as well as in insurance I take this opportunity to appreciate all our stakeholders for the support they have accorded Institution in 2017 and we look forward to a successful 2018.

Receive my very best wishes to you and your family for a prosperous 2018!

2016

THE EXPERIENCE ON – MY CHAT WITH A BANK CEO

I would like to take this opportunity to appreciate everyone who registered and participated in “My chat with a Bank CEO” on Friday 20th May, 2016.

The chat attracted over 500 online participants who contributed to the successful and engaging 1 hour session, which felt like only 20 minutes steered by your great support and input.

The session made me realize that the Topic – Banking Women in Business is of great interest to many and of immense relevance to the Industry. The huge turnout of many online participants saw the Institution gain great commendation from the Kenya Bankers Association (KBA) – My Chat with a bank CEO organizers. The topic trended on twitter Kenya and I was amazed to know that I was also trending on twitter- kenya at number 6.

I appreciate the Kenya Bankers Association (KBA) for their timely innovation in structuring the exceptional forum. I was also greatly honored to represent the Banking Industry to discuss pertinent issues on the overall theme ‘’Redefining Banking and Finance’’. I urge you all to visit http://chat.kba.co.ke/ for a recap of all the engagement during the session.

God Bless You All.  

EARLY MOTHER’S DAY PRESENT TO KWFT CLIENTS

I am delighted to announce that KWFT has awarded its 60,976 esteemed clients with an early Mother’s Day present by proffering them their dividends.

KWFT not only offers life touching products, but it also opened an avenue for women clients to own shares through a vehicle called CSOP. This is an investment opportunity for Kenya Women Holding Members to become shareholders, a move that revealed the great confidence that clients have in the Institution as well as giving them an opportunity to participate in the future earnings, growth aspirations, future dividends and future rights issues of the bank.

I appreciate all Shareholders for their unflinching loyalty, support and continued business patronage and I am assuring them of the safety of their investment. KWFT has a solid platform for growth, underpinned by strong customer loyalty and research to continue offering unique products and services that uplifts the women and their families.

At KWFT mothers are highly regarded as all branches are designed with a feminine touch to ensure the women are served with dignity. Some of the salient features include the Mothers’ Room (to change and breast feed the baby), wall mirrors and fast lanes (queues) for the elderly and expectant women. The mothers’ room is also an avenue for disseminating information on maternal health and the baby’s wellness to keep the mothers informed.

As a way of offering convenience, KWFT launched the Agency Banking Business Model. The Model seeks to take banking services closer to the clients by contracting our own clients to provide some of the banking services on behalf of the Institution from the comfort of their business premises. Currently KWFT has recruited over 1200 agents spread across 45 counties. In addition the Institution has a robust mobile and ATM platform to foster convenience banking.
Bono, a Humanitarian Advocate once said “Give a man a fish, and he’ll eat for a day. Give a woman microcredit, and she, her husband, her children, and her extended family will eat for a lifetime.” For this reason KWFT remains focused in its mission of partnering with women in their creation of wealth for they play a big role in impacting the world we live in.

At KWFT we appreciate and salute all our clients for their hard work and resilience in driving our economy.

2016 REFLECTION

To our Esteemed Stakeholders,

Happy New Year to you all! It is my prayer that you celebrated the start of 2016 in good and enthusiastic spirits.

Henry Ford once said, “Coming together is a beginning. Keeping together is progress. Working together is success.” In the same breath, it gives me great pleasure to appreciate our able Board Members, Esteemed Clients, members of staff and our partners for their undying and continued support that each one showed last year and we look forward to a better year together.

As we embark on the New Year, this is the right time to take stock of the year gone by and look forward with great hope and determination for bigger things in the year ahead. No doubt the strides of the previous year have placed KWFT in a position to maintain only new heights of excellence in 2016.

Reflecting on the year 2015, there is ample evidence that the Institution has grown into a unique powerful Brand owing to the development of new and improved products and services that have helped transform the lives of our clients and that of their families.

Our commitment to promoting financial inclusion in Kenya fostered KWFT to introduce Agency Banking which has brought banking services closer to the people, consequently saving them a lot of time which would have been spent queuing in banking halls or ATMs. In 2015 KWFT recruited and commissioned over 1000 clients to proffer banking services on behalf of the Bank which include cash deposit, cash withdrawal, balance statements and provision of the mini-statement. In addition to providing exceptional services KWFT migrated its magnetic strip ATM cards to the EMV Chip (Europay, MasterCard and Visa) in a bid to shield clients from fraudsters and ensure secure banking. I welcome you all to experience our improved services as aim for excellence in offering customer convenience and satisfaction.

Our partnership with Habitat for Humanity enabled the Institution to develop a low cost housing product known as the ‘Nyumba Smart Loan’. The illustrious and innovative product provides clients with finances to construct, renovate, expand or finish their houses. This facility has enabled hundreds of women and their families to move from mud or grass thatched houses to stone/ brick houses. The product has excited many clients as now they have access to a decent, safe and affordable place to live where they feel secure.

Another great milestone for the Institution and which I take pride in, is the payment of the first dividends to client shareholders who invested in the Institution by buying shares through the KWFT Customer Share Ownership Plan (CSOP Trust).This deed gave our shareholders value for their money thus a great return for their investment.

Our strengths and audacious efforts also enabled KWFT to gain recognition and several accolades during key events such as:

(1.) The Best Company to work for 2015 survey by Deloitte, where KWFT received two awards:

  •  Number 2 – Large Employer’s Category
  •  Number 1 – General Financial services

Worth to note is that KWFT has been recognized as the top three Best Employer to work for in Kenya for 3 years in a row. This is very humbling as it shows that the employees who participate in the rating in this survey have confidence in the Leadership and management of the Institution.

(2.)  Numerous accolades were also received in various ASK Shows in 7 regions they include: Eldoret, Machakos, Nakuru, Nairobi, Kisumu, Kabarnet and Kitale.

(3.)  The Beyond Zero Campaign during the First Lady’s Half Marathon, KWFT emerged the Second Best Corporate Team.

The KWFT clients were also acknowledged during the Citi Micro-entrepreneurship Awards 2015. After a stiff competition and rigorous judging exercise, 10 clients made it to the finals and ‘’. won various awards that included platinum, 4 Gold, 3 Silver and 3 Bronze.

In order to meet customer needs, , KWFT will this year launch new banking services which include cheque book, current accounts, cheque book, overdraft, EFT’s and RTGS just to mention a few to enhance efficiency and offer customer convenience and value.

In conclusion and borrowing from US President Barack Obama, “Women are Powerhouse Entrepreneurs who when they succeed, drive the economic growth and invest back into their families and communities.” For this reason KWFT continues to instil its mission of partnering with Women in their creation of wealth’. The future can only be brighter as the Institution shall continue to proactively offer new strategic initiatives to strengthen and expand its robust operations to proffer exceptional banking products and services to esteemed clients to advance financial inclusion.

On behalf of the KWFT management we wish you and your family a successful 2016.

God Bless!

2015

2015 MESSAGE

To our esteemed stakeholders,

I take the opportunity to extend my heartiest greetings and wishes to you and your family.

Last year was an eventful year with unique challenges, accomplishments, experiences and recognitions for KWFT. The passion and commitment of our able employees enabled us to earn the good will of all our stakeholders.

Some significant milestones achieved last year include the much anticipated sale of KWFT shares to clients through the Customer Share Ownership Plan (CSOP).  We successfully completed the sale of 25% stake of Kenya Women Holding shares in KWFT to clients thereby completing the Divestiture plan. This is a great investment opportunity for our clients as they now have an opportunity to benefit from loans and also participate in the dividend of the company when it is declared. The oversubscription of the shares was not only a sign of confidence by our clients but that of undying support and loyalty.

Another milestone was that of partnering with our clients to take banking services to their doorstep through the Agency Banking Business Model whose pilot program is still ongoing. In addition the Institution was crowned as the 2014 Second Best Company To Work For in Kenya, following a survey conducted by Deloitte.

In a bid to give back to the community, the Institution in conjunction with its staff  donated over Sh13 million to the Education Fund Programme dubbed ‘Capture the future’ established to support needy and bright girl’s to continue their education after completing primary school. KWFT also donated sh1 million to the Beyond Zero Campaign spearheaded by Mrs Margaret Kenyatta, the First Lady of Kenya , which supports the great initiative of reducing maternal and child mortality rate, which also saw over 100 staff participating in the marathon.

The Institution was adorned with several accolades such as the Best Microfinance Bank in East Africa during the 2014 Think Business Banking Awards, Best Microfinance Institution during the Nairobi International Trade Fair, and in 7 major ASK Shows of various Counties.  Our clients were not left behind as they were also acknowledged during the CMA 2014 Awards having won various awards that included Gold, Silver and Bronze. We were also able to grow our loan book to Ksh 19.46 billion and deposits to Ksh 17.26 billion.

In this New Year we have renewed hopes and vigor to excel in this competitive business environment by offering innovative products and services that offer solution to our clients and maintain high standard of excellent customer service.  We have an opportunity to reinforce our resolve to carry our dreams and achievements to the next level. KWFT will continue to make a difference to the society, while providing substantial returns to our customers, employees, and stakeholders.

Lastly, I would like to appreciate every stakeholder for making us achieve great success over the years. Your loyalty and commitment has continued to be a great motivator for us to serve you better. I am equally grateful for the leadership of the Board Chair and the Board of Directors for their visionary leadership.

2013 - 2014

Reflecting on the year 2013-2014

As Kenya Women Microfinance Bank grows from strength to strength, we continually wish to thank all our shareholders for their undying support and commitment to ensure that we stay at the top.

In the year 2013 -2014, the Institution has registered impressive results as captured in the 2013 financial report, which serves as a constant reminder of our great commission of partnering with women in their creation of wealth which is the sole reason of its existence.

The Institution remains committed to delivery of exceptional and competitive products to ensure they cater for various needs in the market. KWFT has embraced technology to enhance efficiency thus leading to the introduction of platforms such as mobile banking, a 24 hours call centre, EMV compliant ATM cards and will soon roll out soon Agency Banking to take banking services closer to the clients.

Unique as we are, KWFT made history for being the first microfinance bank in the country to become a member of Kenya Bankers Association, a platform which will see the Institution issue and clear cheques to enhance efficiency.

The future can only be brighter for KWFT as it plans to issue 25 per cent shares to women clients across the country. The allotment of the shares is an assurance to our stakeholders that, for the last 32 years, their efforts has not been in vain. On the other hand members of staff through Employee Share Ownership Programme (ESOP) were allocated a share of the cake to own 20 per cent of the shares, while KWH owns 55 per cent of the shares.

By empowering women, the Institution serves and transforms families, communities, as well as the nation, these efforts have not gone unnoticed, and thus the Institution has grown to be a unique brand whose positive impacts in the society have been felt on various occasions. 

KWFT announced a significant equity boost through a Ksh 1.37 Billion capital infusion from Rural Impulse Fund II, NMI Frontier Fund and NMI Fund III. The new development strongly propels KWFT DTM in its growth path to seal its position as the preferred financial partner for women entrepreneurs in the East African region.

KWFT has received numerous awards and recognitions in various categories such as Best Microfinance Bank in East Africa Overall winner, Distinguished Tax Payer in the Small Tax Payer’s category by KRA and one of the top 3 Companies to Work for in Kenya 2012 and 2013. The Institutions’ clients were also recognized during the 2013 CITI Micro-entrepreneurship Awards; having won in different categories namely Gold, Silver, Bronze and Platinum. Dr. Riria the CEO of Kenya Women Holding and non-executive director in KWFT was named Ernest and Young Entrepreneur of the year 2013 in the East African Chapter for the Global awards. The Institution also scoped awards in the Best Microfinance Bank Stand in the Nanyuki, Machakos and Nakuru ASK Show’s 2014.

Such achievements could only be attributed to the clients’ partnership and loyalty, to which we say “Hongera akina Mama”.   

I’ll conclude by appreciating all the stakeholders who have made us record great success over the years. I would also like to appreciate the Chairlady and the Board of Directors for the support and guidance.

Finally, I wish to thank all members of staff for working exemplary and for their commitment to serving women of our great nation

Affiliation:

KWFT is now an Associate member of Kenya Bankers Association

MWANGI GITHAIGA

MANAGING DIRECTOR

2012

REFLECTING ON THE YEAR 2011

As the figures and statements captured in 2011 annual report suggest, the mission of partnering with women in their creation of wealth is still the reason for KWFT  existence. As an institution, we have targeted the low income and the financially excluded women and their families in the rural, remote and per-urban areas of this country.  We have developed a wide range of quality and innovative products and adapted our services through the use technology including mobile banking and ATM for the convenience of the families we partner with. With an extensive nationwide geographical coverage and our client connectedness approach, we’ll work to leverage on all these opportunities as we move into 2012.

The past year presented challenging times especially for an institution like KWFT  that seeks to reach the families where they are. It seemed clear that the country had entered an area of fiscal constraint that is likely to last into some time in 2012.  Despite the economic pressures that almost resulted into modest financial performance, the institution continued to address issues that are important to the clients’ savings and credit needs through its product portfolio in business, agriculture, education, health and sanitation as well as clean and renewable energy. Salaried women were also able to access loans from KWFT.

The savings product portfolio remained focused on addressing specific needs of our clients for instance investing in the future of the children, encouraging clients to develop a consistent savings culture and saving for a fixed duration towards a goal as well as the regular account usage. The products also geared towards bringing women together for investment and for nurturing savings culture among the investment group members. In the process, the institution which had 2000 employees reached over 450,000 families using its 221 offices spread countrywide.

Despite the challenges, KWFT effort in pursuing its developmental mission did not go unnoticed. Several accolades fell on the institution including WWB Excellence in Leadership Award for financial and social transparency; Africa Microfinance Recognition Award for commitment to development and vision in reaching those at the bottom of the pyramid by demonstrating social impact and financial transparency; KRA Distinguished Tax Payer Award and  Outreach and Impact Award by Oikocredit for our increasing sustainability, impact and outreach to the financially excluded women and their families in Kenya. Such achievements could only be attributed to the clients’ partnership and loyalty, to which we say “Hongera akina Mama”.

As an institution, we intend to remain focused on improving the livelihoods of our target market and ensure sustainability through effective and efficient operations. Fortunately with the expected regulations that will allow use of our unit offices to offer all our services, the clients can only expect better times with a repositioned institution as a safe place to save.