HARARE - Standard Chartered Bank Zimbabwe Limited (Stanchart) is embarking on a restructuring exercise in line with its parent company’s — Standard Chartered Plc — review of its global branch network.
Samuel Rushwaya, the Stanchart chairman said the restructuring exercise would be conducted carefully in line with local regulatory requirements to ensure that it does not affect services to clients.
“The Group is set to streamline its footprint across the globe and its local franchise, like most markets, will be affected by the realignment,” he said.
Standard Chartered Plc, which has operated in Africa for the past 150 years, is considering closing branches as more customers migrate to online and mobile transactions.
This comes as Stanchart is currently in the process of reorganising its business operations as the financial institution seeks to implement a refreshed operating model.
“2015 will see the bank start to realise incremental benefits in productivity and improved service delivery,” said Rushwaya.
Meanwhile, Stanchart has recorded a $6,7 million profit in the full year to December 2014, despite the harsh economic environment prevalent in the country.
Rushwaya said the profit was, however, 30 percent lower compared to $9,6 million profit after tax recorded in 2013 due to decreased income and a rise in operating costs.
“The bank maintained its revenue momentum in 2014 recording above inflation growth of three percent. Operating costs increased by eight percent compared to the same period last year mainly due to deliberate investment in the business to support a refreshed strategy and efficient model,” he said.
The stellar performance by Stanchart comes at a time when Zimbabwe’s economy is currently characterised by weak demand for locally manufactured goods, deflation and an acute liquidity crunch among other things.
In the period under review, the local financial institution — wholly-owned by Britain-based Standard Chartered Plc — registered a net interest income of $24 million from the $22 million recorded in 2013. Interest income declined marginally from $26,1 million to $25,8 million, while operating expenses increased from $50,9 million in 2013 to $55 million for the period under review.
Bad debts amounting to $906 615 were written off in the period under review, compared to $717 822 written off prior period.
At the end of the period under review, the group’s liabilities stood at $335 million while assets amounted to $407 million.
Net non-performing loans stood at $4,1 million compared to $8,9 million recorded in prior comparative period, with deposits from banks at $5,4 million.