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Equity Bank emerges as the Best Regional Bank in East Africa at the 2021 African Banker Awards

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Equity Bank has been named the Best Regional Bank in East Africa at the 2021 African Banker Awards. The award was conferred to Equity for its consistent financial performance, its role in leading the disruption of Fintech innovations in banking and for its efforts in championing the socio-economic development of communities.

Equity was nominated in two additional award categories including the nomination of Group MD and CEO Dr. James Mwangi as the African Banker of the Year. The bank was also nominated for the Best Bank in Financial Inclusion Award category for its role in delivering financial products and services to all in society including those at the bottom of the pyramid.

The Bank was cited for its contribution in providing financial services and its active role in driving economic growth in thee larger East African region. Despite the challenges posed by the pandemic, Equity demonstrated strong and consistent financial performances in all of its subsidiary countries with improvements in revenue, profits, capital, assets and market share.

The Bank demonstrated relentless dedication to its customers throughout the pandemic by supporting sectors that have traditionally been marginalized, which include youth, SMEs, and women-led businesses.

Commenting on the award, Equity Group Managing Director and CEO, Dr. James Mwangi stated, “We are honoured and humbled to receive this recognition. We purposed to walk and support our customers, staff, and host communities during the COVID-19 pandemic. Our operations in the 6 East and Central African countries that we operate in have been standardized to reflect the One Equity brand, providing inclusive financial services and cementing our positioning as a local bank with a strong regional presence.”

Omar Ben Yedder, Group Publisher of African Banker said, “I was really impressed by the entries this year. It showed that the banking sector is healthy and resilient, which will be critical if it is to support the economic recovery post-COVID-19. What will be fundamental to our recovery is the support of the real economy, especially SMEs, and also a focus on more equity investments and investments in general.”

The Africa Banker Awards is an industry event celebrating African banking achievements. The organizers this year recognized and rewarded institutions that contributed to the real economy, which has suffered from the impact of COVID-19 as well as contributed to the financial empowerment of women in the continent.

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Pain in the new fuel prices

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A litre of petrol in Kenya’s Capital Nairobi will now cost Ksh.134.72 rising from Ksh.127.14.
The cost of diesel meanwhile spikes to Ksh.115.60 from Ksh.107.66 while kerosene will cost Ksh.110.82 from Ksh.97.85.

EPRA has attributed the rising fuel prices higher costs for landed petroleum products with the cost of landed super petrol rising by 0.72 percent, diesel by 4.81 percent and kerosene by 0.96 percent.

In its latest maximum pump price review, the Energy and Petroleum Regulatory Authority (EPRA) has raised the prices of super petrol by Ksh.7.58 per litre.

The greater fuel costs are expected to hurt Kenyans not just at the pump but also in their pockets as the cost of living surges with the prices of other basic commodities rising in the aftermath of higher petrol costs.

Kenyans will face more pain at the pump from Wednesday as petrol prices zoom past the Ksh.130 mark per litre, an all-time high cost for the commodity.

The energy sector regulator however masks the true reasons behind the astronomical surge in fuel costs.

The fund run partly by the National Treasury has provided respite to consumers by lowering margins paid to suppliers/ oil marketers who are later compensated by the exchequer for the hair cut.

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Kenya Set to host the 2nd annual Africa Digital Finance Summit Early Next Year

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Kenya is set to host the 2nd annual Africa Digital Finance Summit (ADFS) on 22nd – 24th February, 2022.

The three-day event themed “The Future of Finance in Africa; our pathway to financial freedom” will incorporate a thought-leadership conference featuring governments, central banks across Africa, prominent executives representing global Fintech operators, start-ups, professionals and decision makers across the world in the financial, economic, technology, fintech and block chain industry to deliberate and forge a pathway towards the future of finance in Africa.

“The Africa Digital Finance Summit 2022 (ADFS) will provide Africa with an opportunity to leapfrog the mistakes of the West by reimagining entire systems of production, financial services, and governance fueled by financial innovations & blockchain technologies thus positioning herself as the continent where solutions in Finance will be implemented successfully,” says Mary Njoki, Organizer and CEO of Glass House PR.

Coming at the backdrop of the Free Trade Agreement in Africa, this annual summit will spearhead the conversation of re-defining value exchange for Africans and encouraging them to leverage on Digital and Decentralized Finance in their businesses and everyday transactions.

The African Fintech report of 2020 states that Africa as a continent has an edge with technology because the mobile subscription penetration rates are up to 80%, thus this summit aims to position Africa as the continent where innovative solutions in digital and decentralized finance will be found and implemented successfully.

During the Africa Digital Finance Summit 2022, the ADFS Report of 2021 will be presented and released to the public. Conversations in the summit will include; understanding blockchain technologies and cryptocurrencies, Implementation of Defi in Africa, Policies governing disruption in finance, Introduction of central bank digital currencies in Africa, the introduction of NFTs for art, amongst other topics.

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InterContinental Hotel’s multi million assests put on auction

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According to documents obtained from Garam Auctioneers, some of the cars being auctioned include a Range Rover Discovery, Mercedes Benz Sprinter, and an Isuzu FRR.

The government also has a 33.8 per cent stake in the five-star hotel which at its peak offered accommodation to high profile guests and heads of state.

For years now the state has been looking for a buyer to offload its share to and the new plans could complicate the intended sale.

Some of the options the owners who include associates of former president Daniel arap Moi are considering include; office blocks, stalls and mini-hotels all in one building such as a mall.

n the midst of the Covid-19 economic crisis, the InterContinental Hotel announced in August that it would terminate its lease agreements with KHP, the hotel’s holding company, and close the facility.

As a result, Sovereign Group appeared to be the most likely candidate to acquire the 33.8 percent stake prior to its sale to outsiders.

The Intercontinental Hotels Corporation Group, which is listed in both the UK and the USA, has a 33.8 percent stake in the hotel group.

InterContinental Hotel's multi million assests put on auction | Pulselive  Kenya

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