African Banking Corporation of Botswana Limited (BancABC) was granted a commercial banking license by the Bank of Botswana in August 2009.
The bank opened its first retail branch at The Square within the New CBD on 5 July 2010 and plans to open a further 3 branches by the end of the first quarter of 2011 under phase one of its retail rollout plan.
Prior to BancABC’s licensing as a commercial bank it operated as the sole merchant and investment bank in the country, where the thrust of its business was to service corporate customers.
BancABC plans to open its second and the flagship branch at its recently completed head office at the Fairgrounds, Gaborone in the fourth quarter of 2010. The fourth quarter will also see the opening of its branch in Francistown along Blue Jacket Street while the fourth branch at the new extension at Game City in Gaborone is slated for the first quarter of 2011.
BancABC moved into its newly constructed own home at the Fairgrounds in Gaborone on 26 June 2010. The complex built at a cost of P25 million houses its head office as well as the flagship Fairgrounds retail branch. “Having operated in the financial sector in the country since 1990, through predecessor institution ulc (Pty) Limited as a licensed credit institution and subsequently as African Banking Corporation as a merchant and investment bank from 2002, BancABC has a very good understanding of the local financial landscape. BancABC has a customer centric approach to service delivery and we will proudly carry this approach to our retail relationships as well” said the Managing Director of BancABC Botswana Jitto Kurian.
BancABC is entering the commercial market with personal and business banking products and services. This includes savings, investment, transactional and lending products for both categories of customers, corporates as well as individuals.
“We are really excited about our entry into retail banking. Under the merchant (wholesale) banking model, our customer base was predominantly corporates and we had limited product offering. Our entry into commercial banking enables us to offer our customers, both corporates and individuals, a more holistic range for financial products and services. With a solid reputation we have enjoyed over the years as a highly efficient corporate bank, extension into retail banking was a natural transition for us” said Jitto Kurian.
BancABC is also a principal member of VISA, which will enable the bank through its retail banking services to offer a range of tailor made VISA cards to its customers. This will give a BancABC customer access to over 400 ATMs and 3,000 retail shops countrywide. VISA cards can also be used internationally at over 30 million retail locations and 1 million ATMs across the globe. “Through the construction of our new head office and aggressive branch rollout, BancABC is not only making a bold statement of its confidence in the Botswana economy but also of its commitment to retail banking. With the rollout of retail banking BancABC is looking forward to play an even more pivotal role in the Botswana financial market. We believe with “Fresh Thinking” and “Smart Banking”, BancABC has positioned itself well to address service issues and provide affordable and innovative financial solutions to our customers” noted Jitto Kurian.