Letshego group upbeat in tough market conditions

Baitshepi Sekgweng

Despite a decline in profit before tax from P684 million realised in 2022 to P121 million recorded this year, the pan African financier Letshego Group ‘s performance was very resilient as the company seeks to continue prioritising resources for markets primed for growth .

In 2023,operations were affected by foreign exchange fluctuations and inflation induced volatility, resulting in loss in profitability of P149 million from P352 million made in 2022.

Nonetheless, Letshego businesses remained strong with 7 percent growth in net advances year-on-year. Being Letshego’s core product growth and mainstay over the years , Government Deduction at Source(DAS) saw impressive net book growth with most support coming from Southern African markets, especially Mozambique, Botswana, Namibia, and Lesotho.

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In 2023, the DAS net loan book increased by 5 percent year-on-year to P11.9 billion while interest income increased by 7 percent to P2.7 billion from P2.5 billion in 2022.

With Mozambique driving growth to increase its net loan book value to P2.5 billion, Botswana registered a 7 percent increase to P3.5 billion, resulting in a 4 percent rise in customers to 37 209.

Further, insurance revenue increased by P114 million to P363 million in 2023, driven by the expansion of embedded insurance across multiple markets and the introduction of new offerings such as health, credit life, and family protection.

“Going forward, Letshego intends to underwrite its own insurance business through cell captive arrangements in all markets, which is expected to further boost insurance earnings. Our core deduction at source product and insurance offerings remain steadfast in providing financial security to underserved customers. From a product focus perspective, our mobile lending portfolio is set for growth too, supported by strong partnerships with mobile service providers,” said group chief executive officer Aupa Monyatsi.

Across the savings and deposits segment, Letshego saw its total deposits going up by 37 percent to P1.5 billion from P1.1 billion.

With the division being a key focus area for Letshego,corporate deposits remain prominent, since they increased to P865 million while retail customer segment, realised a 19 percent growth to finish the year on P673 million from P565 million recorded in 2022.

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“Letshego’s core operating performance was resilient since we achieved strong top-line growth across a number of our business segments including insurance and mobile lending, reporting pleasing loan growth. Excluding the once-off adjustments and foreign exchange impact, the group’s performance would have largely been in line with expectations,” he added.

Letshego is a leading micro lending and deposit taking group with presence in 11 markets in Africa being; Botswana, Namibia, Lesotho, Uganda, Eswatini, Tanzania, Mozambique, Kenya, Nigeria, Ghana and Rwanda.

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