The Arab Investment Bank (AIBK) aims to boost its loans portfolio to EGP 15bn by the end of 2018, up by 50% from 2017, according to the chairperson of the bank Hani Seif El Nasr.
In an interview with Daily News Egypt, he pointed out that the banks aim to raise deposits to EGP 40bn by the end of the year, up 30% from 2017, next to an increase of profits of 30%.
In response to a question about the projects and activities that the bank focuses on financing, he said that AIBK is strongly focused on expanding the small and medium enterprises (SMEs) sector.
Seif El Nasr said that the bank gives great importance to SMEs—being the locomotive of economic development—to accelerate economic growth in Egypt and add value to the Egyptian economy, as well as create new jobs for youth and fresh university graduates.
He added that the AIBK aims to boost its SME portfolio to EGP 12.3bn by the end of 2018.
To reach this goal, the bank established an independent sector specialised in SMEs in 2012. “This enables the bank to absorb all problems facing these types of projects and facilitate their access to funding,” he said.
According to Seif El Nasr, the AIBK put together several specialised schemes that fit with all SME client segments. The programme is called “Partners” and aims to provide easy funding for different SME sectors including medical care, drug stores, IT, activity processing, inventory and working capital, and transportation.
The Partners programme is a collection of specialised financing schemes that match the needs of existing and new activities at a low interest rate of 5% for small and micro companies, and 7% for medium companies, with a grace period of up to seven years and easy terms and conditions that fit all segments.
He also pointed to the signing of an agreement with the Micro, Small, and Medium Enterprises Development Agency (MSME) to provide an encouraging environment for these projects, in addition to signing a protocol with Damietta Furniture City Company to finance the existing projects and contribute to the marketing of its products.
“The bank is keen to participate in the financing of large and major national projects, whether being directly financed or through syndicated loans, which contributes to shaping a better future for the bank’s development and sustainability.”
In addition, he explained that the AIBK cooperated with the Suez Canal Economic Zone (SCZone) to promote investment opportunities in the region, provide banking services, and finance major projects through offering a range of services, including customer money management services and international trade services among many, along with linking national major projects to SMEs in order to maximise development results.
Seif El Nasr said that the bank is currently strengthening its presence by providing services to all customers throughout the country through the domestic geographical expansion of the bank. The number of branches is to be increased to 46 branches by the end of 2018.
He pointed out that the bank has signed an agreement with the SCZone to open a branch for the bank there, next to another agreement with TEDA SEZone Development, a Chinese holding company, to provide funding for the companies that work with it.
He added that the bank also intends to boost the number of ATMs to 400 in 2018, up from only 60 before 2012.
He stressed that the bank is working to develop its technology infrastructure to achieve sustainability in success and compete better in the Egyptian banking market, as well as secure its databases.