August 30, 2018 / 2:20 PM / 10 months ago

Bank of Kigali’s pretax profit up nearly 33 pct due to increased lending

KIGALI, Aug 30 (Reuters) - Rwanda’s biggest lender Bank of Kigali said on Thursday that first-half pretax profit rose nearly 33 percent to 22 billion Rwandan francs ($25.04 million), up from 16.7 billion francs, driven by an increase in net interest income.

Founded 51 years ago, the bank operates 76 branches and an insurance business. Its shares were listed on the Rwandan stock exchange in 2011.

It said it’s net loan book grew 2 percent to 481.2 billion francs.

In May, the bank said it planned to list on the Nairobi Securities Exchange as part of a drive to raise up to $70 million for investment.

The bank’s CEO Diane Karusisi said it expected to list on the Nairobi exchange by December.

“We have many regulators…but we are very much hoping that by the end of this year we will have been able to finalise the transaction,” Karusisi said in a news conference on Thursday.

“We are in advanced stages of raising the capital. We are yet to get all approvals but we assure you that the cross-list will be done before the end of this year,” she said.

“We’ve been discussing with more investors in Rwanda, in the region and beyond the region. The sentiment is very positive. Everyone sees BK as a very profitable business and we believe the appetite is there,” Karusisi said.

The bank’s total assets stood at 731.8 billion francs as of June 30, it said.

$1 = 878.6308 Rwandan francs Reporting by Clement Uwiringiyimana; Editing by Omar Mohammed

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