GetBucks loan book grows 300%, firm pursues commercial banking licence

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By Alois Vinga

GetBucks Microfinance Bank Limited (GetBucks)’s loan book has registered 300% growth and the increase has prompted the financial institution to start pursuing a full commercial banking licence.

The company’s chief finance officer, Paul Soko told Business that the institution has been registering significant growth since its inception.

“Since establishing the microfinance bank, we have more than doubled our customer base and we are currently servicing 50 000 customers.

“Our loan book as at December 2018 stood at RTGS$40 million up from a paltry RTGS$10 million which we had when we started as a microfinance bank,” he said.

Soko said that GetBucks shareholders also approved resolutions that would allow the bank to raise up to RTGS$47 million in additional capital.

The approvals were obtained through resolutions to raise approximately RTGS$5 million via a renounceable rights offer to shareholders, and 350 million shares were placed under the control of the board of directors which could potentially raise up to RTGS$42 million.

“The microfinance bank is raising this capital as it pursues a commercial banking licence that requires a minimum RTGS$25 million in capital.

“Additionally, the bank requires the funds to boost its capacity to write more business in the agricultural and manufacturing sectors with its focus on SMEs and individuals,” he said.

He admitted currency challenges obtaining in the market also affects the returns which shareholders get.

The shareholders also recommended that employees be allowed to participate in a share purchase scheme instead of an employee share option scheme.

The purpose of the scheme is to enable the company’s staff to identify themselves more closely with the company’s activities.

GetBucks was listed on the Zimbabwe Stock Exchange in 2016 and is a deposit taking microfinance institution that uses technology to deliver seamless financial services. The company offers current and savings accounts, debit cards, mobile and internet banking.