UMB to propel growth focusing on their digital channels

Nana Dwemoh Benneh

The Universal Merchant Bank (UMB) says its focus is to empower SMEs with digitization to promote growth and development of the economy.

Nana Dwemoh Benneh, the CEO UMB, said its approach to digitization was ‘DIGITALL’ which was comprehensive and aimed to encompass all sectors they operate in.

 Nana Benneh made this known at a thanksgiving ceremony as part of activities to round-off the Bank’s Jubilee celebrations.

The Bank, founded as a policy bank in 1972, has since March 15, 2022, been celebrating its 50th anniversary.
He said the Bank had purposed to empower SMEs to achieve digitization for growth and development,  while contributing to the economy.

He said the bank had delivered impact, and they would continue in this tradition, since they evolved into a universal bank, “we have continued this tradition of innovation in Ghana.”

He said the bank was developing an exciting hub of platforms that delivered world-class digital banking based on current digital innovations.

The CEO said that under the leadership of the Ghana Association of Banks and the Bank of Ghana, UMB had stepped up measures to ensure that the economy continued to recover.

He said the recovery had become more imminent “as we can see that the quarter-one numbers for the industry are positive.”

“In the case of UMB, our numbers had significant strong lines that are a testament that our medium-term strategic journey is on course,” he added.

He said the Bank’s deposits grew to GH₵ 4.1 billion versus GH₵ 3.2 billion in 2022, and they had seen confidence from customers firmed up in 2023.

He said the uptick in deposits could potentially drive positive interest income, as increased deposits could fund increased loan activity for businesses and individuals.

“We have also seen income from our digital transactional platforms increase by double-digit percentage points,” he said.
Nana Benneh said UMB’s significant increase in non-interest income from 131 million in 2021 to 261 million in 2022 demonstrated the bank’s success in diversifying its revenue sources.

He said diversification was a critical strategy for banks to mitigate the impact of declining net interest margins in a highly competitive market amid high inflation and rising costs of doing business.

The CEO said the impressive growth in fees and commissions, trading, and other income suggested that the Bank had been successful in expanding its operations, developing new products and services, and creating additional revenue streams.

He said such achievements bode well for the bank’s future profitability, as a broader revenue base would help offset the challenges from declining net interest margins on interest-earning assets and position the bank well in the market to build a sustainable future.

“Overall, we also saw growth of GH₵ 333 million in our total asset value,” he added.

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