Housing Finance eyes tier 1 banking status
Housing Finance’s banking subsidiary HFC, plans to be a tier one bank in the next four years, as it steps up its banking operations.
The traditional mortgage lender has slowly been expanding its banking business as it seeks to claw back market share as other commercial banks increase their lending to the real estate sector.
HFC Managing Director Sam Waweru expects the bank’s investment in expansion and upgrading of the core banking system to give it an edge in sourcing cheap deposits.
“In the first half of this year, we have achieved some major milestones including growing customer numbers and deposits as well as roll out of new products. I believe that HFC is now on track to achieve our Vision 2020 ahead of the schedule,” Mr Waweru said.
HFC’s customer deposits hit Sh53.4 billion as of March 31 while Sh41 billion was issued as loans and advances to borrowers. The banking subsidiary plans to open nine branches by the end of the year.
According to Mr Waweru, the aggressive branch expansion plan and roll out of alternative channels, is expected to give the unit a solid base to accelerate its rise to the top tier status.
“When we launched full banking services, we knew we were entering a highly competitive market with many dynamics for sustenance and success,” he said.
The bank is looking at growing its lending to small and medium sized enterprises with new loan products including cyclic credit which allows the businesses to service debt when they receive payments.
Housing Finance was licensed by the Central Bank in 2011 to operate current accounts. Before then the bank depended entirely on mortgage lending.