Addis Ababa, Ethiopia (20 June 2022)

After a month of teaser advertising in Ethiopian cities, Amhara Bank S.C. finally revealed itself on Monday, June 13 as the one behind the question that kept people guessing, “ከጎንዎ ማን አለ?” (Who is beside you?) The news publication was then followed by a myriad of events to celebrate the eve of the bank’s official opening set for June 13. Panel discussion at Hilton Hotel, distribution of clothes with the bank’s logo to transportation facilitators, blood donation programs, and a cultural evening event were among the marketing strategies the bank used to advertise its entrance into the financing game.

Headquartered in the Legehar area of Addis Ababa, Amhara Bank officially opened its doors on Saturday, June 13 with an astounding 72 branches, and a plan to get this number to 100 by the end of June. This bold move was accompanied by the provision of free Anbessa bus rides throughout Addis Ababa and gifts for mothers that gave birth on this historical day.

Amhara Bank has set itself apart from already existing private banks on several fronts, the very first being its 165,000+ signatories with 40,000 more investors in the process of buying shares. As such, the bank has broken the record of having the greatest number of shareholders in the history of banking in Ethiopia. The Amhara Media Corporation stated that only 20% of the shares were sold in the actual Amhara region, the rest being sold off in Addis Ababa and other regions. The bank was able to gather a signed capital of Br.6,516,327,599 and a paid-up capital of Br.4,825,763,703 from investors within and outside of the country.

The main objective of the bank, as per their newspaper publication, is more than merely joining the financial sector. Amhara Bank primarily wishes to provide banking services to previously neglected areas and classes of people, putting up a target of reaching 70% of people in the countryside. It aims to do so by implementing new and untried methods of modern banking supported by advanced technology. Melaku Fanta, the Board Chairman of Amhara Bank, said that the bank abides by the principle of good-natured competition over hostile rivalry, and mutual growth overgrowth at the expense of others.

Amhara Bank marches on with the motto, “Beyond Financing,” indicating its dedication to corporate social responsibility and its aim to help the day-to-day lives of the Ethiopian people.

Few Points from 2020/21 Ethiopia’s Banking Industry Insight Report of BIE Intelligence

The last fiscal year was not business as usual for Ethiopia Commercial Banks. The Covid-19 pandemic, combined with a year-long conflict, was the ultimate one-two punch, putting Ethiopian banks to the ultimate test in an unforeseen way. Yet, they demonstrated the ability to withstand a hypothetical adverse event.

  • The market size, measured by revenue, of the Commercial Banking industry, was estimated to be around 163.542 billion in 2020/21. The total assets of the banking sector were estimated at ETB 1.7 trillion in 2020/21 with liabilities totaling ETB 1.6 trillion. With 6,734 branches, the sector has employed 114,588 employees across the 17 banks. The total paid-up capital summed at 94.8 billion and net profits earnings were recorded at 28.9 billion.
  • The total revenue of commercial banks was around 163.542 billion in 2020/21. The average earnings per share of commercial banks per 1000 ETB amounted to 276 ETB with 1.36 trillion in deposits mobilized across all banks under the assessment.
  • A total of 842 billion ETB loans and advances were disbursed by the 17 banks in the last fiscal year.
  • A total of 559 billion ETB was disbursed in loans across 14 sectors (counting export & import as a single sector on its own). Domestic trade and services took most of the loans with 121 billion ETB attributed to that sector.
  • The top 5 banks that had brought the largest net profits in 2020/21 are CBE, Awash International Bank, Dashen Bank, Abyssinia Bank, and Cooperative Bank of Oromia.
  • Among 16 the private banks, the four dominant banks with respect to assets, number of customers, capital, and deposit allocation are Awash, Dashen, Abyssinia, and Cooperative Bank of Oromia banks, with the 4 controlling more than half of the assets, number of customers, net profit, and deposit allocation among private banks, and 46% of the capital among private banks.

The opinions expresses here in the post "Amhara Bank: The New Heavyweight Contender in the Banking Industry" are those of the individua's contributor(s) and do not necessarily reflect the views of Business Info Ethiopia , BIE Intelligence PLC, its publisher, editor, or any of its other contributors.


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