Kenya Commercial Bank, in conjunction with Safaricom, has offered to support its customers in financial agony, availing more affordable lending and reducing cost on mobile transactions as part of the measures to help Kenyans as they struggle with the effects of coronavirus (COVID19).
KCB will put aside Sh30 billion in a stimulus fund that will be used to lend to KCB M-PESA customers for the next three months.
The qualifying customers will also have higher borrowing limits and extended repayment periods for borrowers with existing facilities, all thanks to the fund.
Other aiding measures the financial institution has offered to individuals and small business owners include negotiations of the loan agreements of either allowing repayment moratoriums or extending the periods of repayment up to 12 months.
The bank will also foot the legal costs associated with loan restructuring.
“We stand with Kenyans and all our customers at this time our country and the world at large grapple with the pandemic. Our firm priority remains to make sure that our employees, customers, business partners, and the entire population remain safe and free from the virus,” said Joshua Oigara, the KCB Group CEO.
Mr. Oigara, who is also the Managing Director of the Bank, added that they have a responsibility to support the economy and inspire the growth of the nation.
According to Oigara, this is the time they are required to offer support to their customers to move on with life and protect their businesses through loans as the economy starts to slow down as a result of the ongoing calamity.
KCB and Safaricom will also give a chance to customers who had been blacklisted from borrowing at the Credit Reference Bureau (CRB) but have since cleared their debts.
“We shall also open credit limits to those customers who had been listed as a result of defaulting on small amounts, but who are now repaying their loans. Customers in need of relief are advised to get in touch with us to work out the respective support areas,” Oigara added.
KCB has over 22 million customers who had borrowed Sh212 billion in 2019 on its KCB-MPESA, which is a mobile transaction the bank operates in partnership with Safaricom.
Last week, President Uhuru Kenyatta encouraged Kenyans to make cashless payments as opposed to handling cash in a bid to reduce the risk of transmitting the coronavirus.
The president directed zero-rating of a bank to mobile and mobile to bank transactions for the next 30 days.