By George Sembony, The Citizen
Handeni. The National Microfinance Bank (NMB PLC) has begun to implement a Warehouse Receipt Finance Scheme (WHRF) for maize farmers in Handeni District, Tanga Region.
The NMB Handeni Branch Customer Services manager, Mr Charles Ng’osha, said here that the over eight Agricultural Marketing Cooperative Societies were scheduled to open bank accounts with the bank in readiness for the commencement of the scheme in warehouses that have thoroughly been studied by experts from the bank’s headquarters in Dar es Salaam.
Ng’osha was presenting a paper at a one-day meeting of the Sunflower Value Chain Platform chaired by its chairman, Captain Seif Mpembenwe (rtd), who is also the district commissioner.
Training for members of cooperatives that have been scheduled to start the scheme has already been conducted through the NMB Foundation for Agricultural Development (NFAD), a fund which was established with the support of Rabo Bank of the Netherlands in 2009 to build and strengthen sustainable cooperative societies to enable members to increase income from their produce.
Ng’osha said the WHRF is part of plans of the largest bank in Tanzania to invest in agriculture and the scheme is already operating for such crops as coffee, cotton, paddy and cashew nuts.
The scheme, he said, which offers an opportunity for farmers to get cash as they hand over their produce at the warehouse would liberate farmers who have been at the mercy of middlemen and traders.
By Tola Akinmutimi, National Mirror
In furtherance of its drive toward improved financial inclusion of unbanked Nigerians, particularly those in the grassroots in the banking system, the Central Bank of Nigeria has commenced the licensing of a new set of microfinance banks in the country.
Investigations by National Mirror showed that at least 50 new MFBs may have been licensed by the apex bank in the past three months, even as the newly revised MFB guidelines offer prospects for new prospective investors who may wish to explore its huge market for investments. A source close to the leadership of the umbrella body of the MFBs, the National Association of Microfinance Banks, confirmed that some of the newly registered MBFs have applied for membership of the body as part of their efforts to enjoy recognition and leverage their operations in the large, yet-to-be-fully developed micro credit segment of the market.
.“I can confirm to you that CBN has actually licensed new microfinance banks in recent months. This is because we have at least over 40 of them applying for membership of the NAMB. And as I talk with you now, we are aware that more investors are indicating their interest in the sector. .“This development is welcomed in view of the fact that more MFBs coming to the market will help in deepening the market by expanding the frontiers of services and products.’ penetration. The only thing we need to do is to ensure that these MFBs observe the ethical rules.We would not like to see a situation that will compel the apex bank to apply the big stick as was witnessed in the industry about 10 months ago.”, she added.
When contacted, the National Chairman of the NAMB, Chief Mathias Omeh, confirmed that new MFBs were applying for membership of the body, adding that .“this is an indication that some new operators have been granted approval by the CBN. I cannot tell you how many applications we have received precisely, but I think over 30 of them have come in the last two months..” It would be recalled that the apex bank had a fortnight ago issued new guidelines for the operators in the sub-sector. The new guidelines seek to encourage more investors to reduce the gap that currently exists in the financial inclusion drive. It is estimated that at least 56.7 million Nigerians are currently excluded from the financial services of the banking sector.
One of the major features of the revised guidelines which was approved last April but made public officially this week by the apex bank, is the downward review of the paid up capital of MFBs licensed to operate in a state from N1bn to N100 million. In addition, the revised guidelines also recognise three distinct categories of MFBs, as against the two provided for in the 2005 guidelines. Specifically, the new guidelines provided for the establishment of Unit Microfinance Bank, State Microfinance Bank and National Microfinance Bank categories, while the former policy provided for only MFBs licensed to operate as a unit bank and MFBs Licensed to operate in a state, amongst other requirements.
From Tanzania Daily News
NATIONAL Microfinance Bank (NMB) plans to introduce financial literacy programme intended to educate the society on various fiscal matters as a way of nurturing new customers.
This was said on Wednesday in Dar es Salaam by the NMB Head of Marketing Mr Iman Kajura on the 35th Dar es Salaam International Trade Fair (DITF) that customers need to be imparted financial knowledge and skills.
“Customers are created not born. The programme will be an important milestone in creating new and potential future customers on banking services,” he said.
Some of the major issues to be covered in the programme he said would include savings, unplanned borrowing, financial plans and business proposals. He said by imparting saving knowledge on school children would motivate them to utilise financial services.
He said for most people begin to utilise banking services on maturity or even at advanced age and sometimes on situation where a bank account is needed as one of the requirements for getting certain services.
Mr Kajura said for example, bank account was one of the prerequisite for one to be admitted to the higher learning institutions.
He said the programme would be conducted through business clubs spread almost throughout the country where there were NMB branches. In this years’ DITF, 45 Small Medium Entrepreneurs (SMEs) financed by the bank participated in the exhibitions.
He said the 45 SMEs from different parts of the country were part of the 150,000 who secured loans from the NMB and some of them have advanced businesses.
“The programme started some three years ago with a goal to empower entrepreneurs own and run own businesses,” he said.
Ms Lilian Koko, an entrepreneur from Musoma Region, one of the beneficiaries of the NMB loans dealing with wine and food products started with just 400,000/- but has grown with the bank to a capacity of borrowing about10m/-.
One of the hurdles that need government interventions was the problem of packaging materials which were at most times unavailable. “This was increasing the cost of doing business while lessening profit margin,” she commented.
By Christopher Maregesi, The Citizen
The fate of loans that councillors across the country have applied to National Microfinance Bank (NMB) depends on the sanction to be given by the ministry of Regional Administration and Local Governments.
Reports received in Bunda said that the bank has written to the ministry, seeking its consent before it dishes out the loans.
In their meeting in February this year, councillors in Bunda asked the bank to extend loans to them, with some of the civic leaders planning to use the money to buy transport facilities.
They asked the bank that the loans should be recovered from the allowance payments in the next five years.
But since then, they have not received information on what has happened to their loan applications, forcing the council chairman, Mr Joseph Marimbe, to invite the NMB manager at Bunda branch, Ms Elizabeth Kilumbi, during a meeting held recently to explain the issue.
Ms Kilumbi told the councillors that after receiving their applications, the bank wrote to the ministry, which is their employers, seeking guarantee before the loans were disbursed.She said the bank reached the decision, as there were similar loan applications from across the country, hence the need to contract the ministry for the guarantee.
“We received many applications from here and forwarded them to the headquarters for processing. But it appeared that many councillors elsewhere have also made similar applications and that was why NMB decided to contact the ministry for guarantee,” she explained.Ms Kilumbi asked council’s chairmen across the country to request the ministry for the guarantee, as the bank was ready to offer the loans once the assurance is secured.
By Kui Kinyanjui, The East African
Tanzania’s third largest bank is now a fully flegded universal retail bank, thanks to a core banking system developed by International Business Machines (IBM).
For the National Microfinance Bank, the move was a calculated one, aimed at earning a larger share of the growing Tanzanian retail banking space, as the government prepared to off-load 70 per cent of its share-holding to private investors.
“We had to completely transform our banking systems to offer new services, cut customer waiting times and improve our competitive position” said John Ncube, chief information officer NMB.
NMB began laying down the pieces that would see it transform its processes with the help of the world’s largest technology services firm five years ago.
NMB is one of Tanzania’s largest banks by assets, accounting for some 40 per cent of the industry’s capital, 45 per cent of loan issuances, 48 per cent of the assets, 52 per cent of deposits and 54 per cent of number of branches and investments in government securities.
IBM is now scouring for more such deals in Africa as governments, banks and private companies embark on technological transformation. Last week, IBM announced it had opened a subsidiary office in Tanzania. The firm said it expects Africa to be a strong growth area for the information technology business over the next five years, thanks to growth in banking and telecoms.
Among the products the bank rolled out include the country’s largest ATM network, an online banking platform that allowed a large segment of its customers to monitor accounts remotely, followed a year later by a mobile product that allows over 300,000 users to access their accounts using their mobile phones.
But investing in these technology-heavy products meant the bank had to restructure its legacy systems in order to cut the average transaction time down from days to just minutes.
“With our market expansion strategy, we are actively increasing our ability to provide high-value solutions for our clients and partners across the continent,” said David Sawe, country general manager, IBM Tanzania.
The new subsidiary office is part of a broad programme of investment that IBM is making in Africa covering the creation of new facilities, offices, training, staffing and recruitment, sales and marketing. The announcement follows the recent news of the opening of IBM’s office in Dakar, Senegal giving the firm direct presence in over 20 African countries including South Africa, Ghana, Nigeria, Kenya, Morocco, Egypt, Tunisia and Algeria.
The expanded presence in Tanzania will allow IBM to increase its level of service to clients and partners across East Africa; and deliver more advanced and high-value solutions.
Using a new system based on IBM’s Power servers and storage technologies, NMB has been able to increase its customer base to 1.4 million accounts, expand its number of ATMs to 400 and offer debit cards and mobile banking services to its customers across the country.
Today the bank processes millions of transactions per month and has some of the fastest transaction processing times in the country. The firm is also helping the Tanzanian government as it moves to support the adoption of information technologies and development in key areas such as education, research and development initiatives.
Away from Tanzania, IBM is currently in the process of stepping up its presence in Africa, a market whose potential for growth has been compared to Eastern Europe during the early part of the last decade.
A main catalyst for this focus on Africa was IBM’s win last September of the contract to manage the rollout of Bharti Airtel’s IT operations across 16 countries in Africa. Deals that involve the growing mobile sector and the on-going e-government push throughout Africa have attracted international IT firms, with IBM joining Intel, Accenture and Google in establishing regional bases.
As growth in established markets such as Europe and the US starts to plateau, most companies are attracted by the $25 billion expected to be spent across Africa this year. Research firm IDC predicts that spending in the region will see strong growth of 12.8 per cent, surpassing the $60 billion mark, and driven by hardware spending, as well as spend on packaged software and IT services.
“In 2011, IT markets in Africa will continue to build on the post downturn rebound in spending experienced in 2010. Investments to build out IT infrastructure will gain further momentum in most countries, particularly in the public sector,” said Jyoti Lalchandani, Vice President and Regional MD, IDC MEA.
By Florian Kaijage, IPP Media
The National Microfinance Bank (NMB) has emerged as the top employer in the banking sector, beating all current banks countrywide.
The bank which was established in 1997 following the government decision to split up the then National Bank of Commerce enjoyed supremacy as it had 2610 employees by the end of 2010, thus commanding the market share by 23 per cent, according to statistics in the Tanzania Banking survey.
National Bank of Commerce NBC came second with 1496 workers, equivalent to 13 per cent of the market share, 10 per cent lower to NMB.
On the second position lies CRDB, another big player in the industry with 1437 employees, representing 12.8 per cent of the market share.
A surprising aspect is Barclays Bank, which the report showed had 668 employed workers by the of 2010 as it ranked 4th amongst 41 banks.
The bank headquartered in the United Kingdom re-opened its business in the country in the year 2000. Earlier on the bank had operated in the country but its business was folded into NBC following nationalization of the economy in 1967.
Others in the top 10 list are Exim Bank (477 employees), Stanbic Bank (402), Tanzania Postal Bank, (392), Akiba Commercial Bank (360), Standard Chartered Bank (337) and FBME Bank 308. At the bottom are Tandahimba Community Bank (8 employees), Bank of India Tanzania (18), Eftatha Bank (22), Uchumi Commercial Bank (23), Kagwera Farmers Co-operative Bank (23), Mwanga Rural Community Bank (29), Mufindi
Communty Bank(29), Kilimanjaro Co-Cooperative Bank (30) Bank of Baroda Tanzania (35) and Mbinga Community Bank (37).
In total the banking sector had employed 11, 208 by the end of 2010. On the other hand NMB also topped the list in terms of number of branches countrywide as once again the numbers favoured them.
The statistics in the report show that NBM has 138 branches around the country giving them the biggest market control of 29 per cent as CRDB chases by far on 60 branches, 12% of the market share.
NBC came 3rd in this category with 53 branches across the country constituting 11 pre cent of the market. Barclays continued to keep pace with giants as they stood 4th with 32 branches, enjoying 6.8 per cent of the market share.
5th to 10th positions performance on this section went to Tanzania Postal Bank (27), Exim Bank (19), Akiba Commercial Bank (14), Bank of Africa Tanzania (14), KCB Bank Tanzania and Stanbic bank with 11 branches each.
By Beatus Kagashe, The Citizen
Dar es Salaam. The annual general meeting of the National Microfinance Bank (Nmb) has approved a dividend of Sh36 per share being an increase of 15 per cent over the dividends shareholders got in the previous year.
A total of Sh18 billion will be given to the bank’s shareholders as dividends from the Sh54 billion net profit the bank got in 2010, according to the bank’s ceo Mark Wiessing.
“2010 was very successful, we have increased branches from 100 to 140 all over the country and the bank’s profit before tax has grown to Sh78 billion,” said Mr Wiessing.He added that the bank’s earnings per share improved from Sh95.1 in 2009 to Sh107.96 in 2010.
“Barring unforeseen circumstances Nmb is confident about continued favourable developments for 2011, supported by a strong economy and favourable economic indicators,” he told shareholders.The Nmb board chairman Mr Misheck Ngatunga stated that strong loans and advances, customer deposits and transactional values growth were the main contributors to good results.
“The bank’s future performance remains dependent on interest rate developments and competitive pressures while the risk of adverse developments on loan portfolios is an inherent part of our business,” said Mr Ngatunga.Mr Ngatunga added; “Nmb is confident about continued favourable developments for 2011, supported by strong economy an favourable economic indicators,”.
In 2010 the Nmb customer base increased from 600,000 to 1.4 million active customers. The bank’s ATM machines reached 400, with over one million cards in circulation.This was the third Nmb AGM since the bank listed on the Dar es Salaam Stock Exchange in 2008.
“The bank will continue its ongoing efforts to further improve customer service through all its channels, while continuing to control costs and manage credit and other risks prudently and invest technology and cut over to a new core system in the course of 2011,” said Mr Wiessing.
From IPP Media
The Kisutu Resident Magistrate’s Court in Dar es Salaam has ruled that some defendants arraigned on charges of murder and armed robbery at the National Microfinance Bank (NMB)’s Temeke branch last July have a case to answer.
The case is set to be heard by the High Court of Tanzania since the resident magistrate’s court lacks jurisdiction over murder charges.
The court issued the ruling on Friday, after receiving from prosecution attorneys, led by state attorneys Zuberi Mkakatu, Esther Kyala and Algo Mkini, tendered proof asserting the involvement of some defendants in the alleged crime.
The told the court that they would tender in the High Court empirical evidence, including photographs that show how the crime happened on the scene, firearms report from a specialist and a postmortem report on the murdered victims from the respective pathologist.
The state attorneys said they would also present as evidence a warning statement from one of the accused and a photograph showing four Land Cruisers belonging to Salum Abdullah.
Richard Lucas, Selemeni Omari Nzowa and Sergeant Mathew Majungunga (43) of Tanzania Peoples Defence Forces (TPDF)’s in Kibaha are set to be tried on homicide and robbery charges.
Their co-defendants are Boniface Joseph, Deogratius Masawe, Antony Jeremiah, Said Hamisi, Isack Swai, Japo Salum and Yusuf Rajabu.
Earlier, the prosecution alleged that on July 31, last year at NMB Temeke branch, the defendants murdered two individuals – Seif Mkwike and a police corporal identified only as Josephat in the course of robbing from the bank.
From The Guardian, Tanzania
Defence hearing of a bank robbery case involving the theft of 234m/- from the Mwanga branch of the National Microfinance Bank (NMB) has been adjourned to next week.
A total of 12 people had initially been brought before the Moshi Resident Magistrates’ Court in connection with the bank robbery. Five have since been acquitted of the robbery count, but still face prosecution on a related murder charge.
The defence was expected to make its case this week, after the prosecution wound up its presentation. However, it looks unlikely that this will happen before next week.
State attorney Abdallah Chavula requested the court to adjourn the case for one week because at present two of the state’s prosecutors, Juma Ramadhani and Prosper Rwegerera, are on safari on official duty.
Deodat William Temu (39), Emmanuel Eliaza Mziray (36), Florian Anthony Kimati (37), former NMB accountant Salome Matemu and PC Nathaniel Manyama, who was one of the police officers on duty during the robbery, have been cleared of any involvement in the incident.
Samwel Gitau Saitoti, a.k.a Saimoo (33), Michael Kimani Peter a.k.a Kimm (40), and Calist Joseph Kamili Kisambu Kanje (47) are among those still on the hook for the conspiracy and robbery charge, and are being represented by Arusha advocate Median Mwale.
Others are family members Devotha Elias Msanze (35), Elizabeth Elias Msanze (24), Juliana Elias Msanze (45) and Ntabasile Elias Msanze, who are represented by Advocate John Ruwaichi.
The seven defendants face multiple counts of conspiracy to commit armed robbery, murder and bank theft in contravention of the laws of the country.
Additionally, all twelve still face prosecution for the murder of another police officer, PC Michael Milanzi, who was killed during the robbery.
Because the Resident Magistrate’s Court has no jurisdiction over murder cases, the trial is set to be moved to the High Court.
The prosecution alleges that on July 11, 2007 at around 7.30pm, the suspects raided NMB Mwanga branch, killing a police officer on duty and severely injuring another before they made off with approximately 234mil/.
By Victor Karega, The Citizen
Dar es Salaam. The National Microfinance Bank (NMB) has partnered with African Life Insurance to initiate a scheme that will see the bank giving out money to cover for funeral expenses in case one of its live customers die.
The joint funeral expenses cover, known as ‘NMB Faraja’, will be provided free to all active holders of the NMB Personal Accounts, according to the bank’s chief commercial officer (CCO), Mr Kees Verbeek.
“Under this scheme, we will give the spouse of our deceased Personal Account holder, who operated his/her account actively, Sh600,000 to cater for funeral expenses…..in case both, the wife and the husband have lost their lives, then the next of keen will get Sh1.2 million as funeral expenses cover,” he said in Dar es Salaam yesterday.
He said the service was designed to assist the bank’s clients in times of need, noting that the new service is in addition to credit life insurance cover, which the bank provides to its consumers, in partnership with African Life Insurance.
Earlier, the African Life Insurance chief executive officer, Mr Julius Magabe said his company decided to partner with NMB to capitalize on the bank’s network and help Tanzanians in rural areas to get access to insurance services.
NMB has a network of 139 branches and 400 ATMs countrywide.