(Bloomberg) -- KCB Group Ltd. first-half profit jumped 5% as the East African nation’s largest lender earned more interest income from investing in government securities and providing business loans.

Net income in the six months through June was 12.7 billion shilling ($123 million), Chief Finance Officer Lawrence Kimathi told investors Thursday in the capital, Nairobi. That matched estimates by African Alliance Securities Kenya.

Key Insights:

  • Net interest income increased 5.4% to 25.4 billion shillings even after the lender put aside 3 billion shillings in provisions for loan losses, compared with 800 million shillings a year earlier. Growth in credit was partly driven by the lender’s mobile loans platform.
  • Lending to the private sector has picked up since a high court annulled a law capping interest rates in March, and despite some lawmakers fighting to still have the legislation in place.
  • KCB said it still plans to conclude the acquisition of National Bank of Kenya next month despite recommendations by a lawmakers’ committee to stop the deal on concern that it undervalued the state-controlled lender.
  • Earlier, KCB Group First Half Net Income KES12.7 Bln, +5% Y/y

Get More

  • Click here for the full earnings statement
  • Kenya Backs KCB Group’s National Bank Bid Despite Valuation

To contact the reporter on this story: Bella Genga in Nairobi at bgenga2@bloomberg.net

To contact the editors responsible for this story: David Malingha at dmalingha@bloomberg.net, Helen Nyambura

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