Letshego Expects A Shoot Up In Profits

2017 full year results profit after tax will be 10 to 15 percent higher than those for the 2016


Botswana Stock Exchange listed micro finance group, Letshego Holdings, is anticipating its profits for the year ended 31st December 2017 to be materially higher than the previous period.
The micro-lending titan which had recorded a total revenue that exceeded the P2.2billion mark for the December 2016 reporting period announced last week in Stock Exchange News that the 2017 full year results profit after tax will be 10 to 15 percent higher than those for the 2016 reporting period.  The profit for the 2016 period was P669.7million, a drop from P767,7million reported in 2015.
“Detailed full year results are expected to be released on or about 5th March 2018 following the completion of all internal governance procedures,” reads the Friday announcement by the group chairman, Enos Banda.
First listed on the local bourse in 2002, Letshego to date prides itself as an inclusive finance focused group with consumer, micro-lending and deposit taking subsidiaries across Sub-Saharan Africa.
The Group led by Chris Low has achieved a number of key milestones in its transformation agenda towards creating Africa’s leading inclusive finance group and continues to invest in expanding its African footprint and technology delivery platforms.
In its strategic agenda, Letshego continues to embrace financial inclusion which is the cornerstone of its strategic agenda. The group has obtained Mastercard principal licenses in Mozambique and Namibia, became the Alliance for Financial Inclusion first African partner and commenced the pilot of the agency model in Mozambique.
The group has also over the years managed to finalise the banking license in Namibia, integrated the 2015 acquisitions in Tanzania and Nigeria into the business and expanded its agency network in Tanzania.
In Botswana however the central bank, BoB, over the last years rejected the company’s application for banking license, in which it had wanted a specific license of deposit taking. BoB however was unable to give the license as it has no such provision.
As things stand, it is understood that the government is working on a draft paper which ultimately if approved by stakeholders and also in cabinet will allow for tier banking license issuance. The group has since backed down to re-apply for a banking license in Botswana.
The group is also progressing its inclusive finance agenda by piloting educational, affordable housing as well as environmental lending solutions within its existing footprint.
It has also managed to acquire AFB Ghana in March 2017 which became the eleventh market for Letshego in the African footprint, six of which have deposit licenses.
Rwanda and Ghana in 2017 became Letshego’s latest markets to forge partnerships with local mobile operators, which introduced the group to over 30,000 new customers in its emerging informal segment.
In another fascinating development in 2017, Letshego obtained approval from the Namibian Stock Exchange to list Letshego holdings Namibia on the NSX, which opened for Initial Public Offer in August and eventually listed September 2017. Letshego Namibia is a registered bank and micro finance group and its business activities are similar to the overall Letshego Group. In enhancing customer experience, Letshego has in 2017 been able to launch its newly refreshed Letshego brand all over its footprints.
Letshego continues to drive its inclusive financial services strategy and to strengthen its operations through investment in people, technology and strategic partnerships. The Board of Directors had previously shown their confidence in that the group is well positioned to benefit from the growing markets in which it is active and views inorganic expansion via strategic acquisitions as important to the acceleration of Letshego’s strategy. It is against this background that the group will continue to seek and review relevant opportunities to be pursued.
Letshego’s share price last Friday closed the week as the only gainer in the local bourse at 188 thebe, up by 1 thebe from 187 thebe in the first week of February. The stock closed for the 2017 (December 31st) year trading at 188thebe and still opened for the 2018 (January 5th) year at the same price.