KBA recognizes 26 banks for advancing sustainable business practices kbaadmin November 15, 2023

KBA recognizes 26 banks for advancing sustainable business practices

Nairobi, 15th November 2023: Banking industry advocacy group Kenya Bankers Association (KBA) has today recognized various financial institutions for demonstrating sustained commitment to driving a positive impact on the environment through sustainable lending practices.

During the 7th edition of the Sustainable Finance Initiative Catalyst Awards ceremony organized by KBA in partnership with FSD-Kenya earlier today, Cooperative Bank of Kenya scooped the top 2023 Overall Sustainable Finance award, followed by Equity Bank Kenya and Absa Bank Kenya respectively.

The recognitions come after a comprehensive review of  banks’ entries early this month by an independent panel of judges. The entries were reviewed under eight categories that included case study submissions.    

Under the Most Innovative Bank category, Equity Bank Kenya emerged tops, with both Cooperative Bank of Kenya and Kenya Women Microfinance Bank (KWFT) taking the second position. Absa Bank Kenya was ranked  third best in the category that received a total of nine entries.

The top award in the Best Client Case Study- Promoting Persons with Disability Accessibility category went to Cooperative Bank of Kenya followed by  Standard Chartered Bank and Equity Bank in the second and third place respectively. Cooperative Bank of Kenya and KWFT tied in first place under the Best Client Case Study-Promoting Gender Inclusivity category, with Absa Bank and Standard Chartered Bank taking the second and third places respectively.

Absa Bank Kenya scooped the top award under the Best Case Study-Operations category, followed by Cooperative Bank of Kenya, and Equity Bank Kenya. The first-place award under the  Best Case Study-Commercial category was taken by Cooperative Bank of Kenya, followed by Equity Bank Kenya and African Banking Corporation(ABC Bank) in the third position respectively.

Equity Bank Kenya received the first-place award under the Best-Case Study-Retail MSME category, where Cooperative Bank of Kenya took the second top position and Kenya Women Microfinance Bank coming third place.

In 2023, a total of forty-nine entries were submitted by banks, an increase from the forty-three in the year 2022. The judging panel for the Sustainable Finance Catalyst Awards constituted of the following:

  1. Dorcas Beryl Otieno – UNESCO Chair holder at the Kenyatta University (Chairperson)
  2. Dan Ndenga – Co-founder of Miltech
  3. Peter Muriu – Senior Lecturer, University of Nairobi
  4. Karen Basiye – Director Sustainable Business and Social Impact, Safaricom PLC
  5. Mumbi Maria Wachira, Strathmore University Business School

Notes to the editor

About the Sustainable Finance Guiding Principles & Industry Standards

The Kenya banking industry in March 2015 adopted the Sustainable Finance Initiative (SFI) Guiding Principles that guide the banks in balancing their business goals with the economy’s development priorities and socio-environmental concerns. The SFI Principles that were officially launched by the Central Bank of Kenya Governor Dr. Patrick Njoroge on 1st December 2015 are grounded in three main priorities, namely equipping the financial services sector to perform optimally in the area of comprehensive risk management; enhancing business practice, leadership and governance; and promoting industry growth and development by fostering a culture of innovation and inclusivity enabled by new technology. The Principles draw from and harmonize several global best practice standards, including the Equator Principles, IFC Performance Standards, Nigerian Sustainable Banking Principles, African Development Bank (AfDB) Green Growth Policy, Global Reporting Initiative (GRI) Reporting Guidelines, UNEP Finance Initiative (UNEP-FI) Guidelines, UN Global Compact Principles, ISO 26000:2010, and Kenya’s National Climate Change Policy (draft).

About the Kenya Bankers Association

KBA (www.kba.co.ke) was founded on 16th July 1962. Today, KBA is the financial sector’s leading advocacy group and banking industry umbrella body that represents total assets in excess of USD 60 billion. KBA has evolved and broadened its function to include advocacy on behalf of the banking industry and championing financial sector development through strategic projects such as the launch of the industry’s first P2P digital payments platform PesaLink. In line with the Government’s policy on public-private partnerships, KBA and Central Bank of Kenya have implemented key projects such as modernization of the National Payments System through the Automated Clearing House, implementing the Real Time Gross Settlement System (RTGS), and the Kenya Credit Information Sharing Initiative. The KBA members are comprised of commercial banks and deposit taking microfinance banks.