Business News of 2013-12-06

First Capital Plus acquires banking license

First Capital plus (FCP), an indigenous savings and loans company, has been given approval by the Bank of Ghana (BoG) to carry out the business of a class one universal bank under the Banking Act.

Per this new status, the company is now known as First Capital plus Bank Limited and becomes the 27th licensed universal bank in Ghana.

At a press briefing to announce the new status of the company, the Chief Executive Officer, Mr John Kofi Mensah, said the recognition by BoG attested to the astronomical growth the bank had witnessed since its inception as a microfinance company, becoming a savings and loans institution and finally a universal bank.

"What we are witnessing today is enough evidence that given the chance and adequate supervision, the non- bank financial institutions (NBFIs) can become a feed to Ghana's banking industry;' he said.

The bank, he said, would continue to target small and Medium Enterprises (SMEs) as their dealings with the sector had propelled them to achieve phenomenal growth.

He stressed that "as a bank, we will continue to have the SME sector as our core target segment. What the universal banking status offers us is an opportunity to offer more tailor-made products to the growing needs of the SME market with solutions we were hitherto legally constrained from directly providing."

Recounting some of the growth indicators of the bank,Mr Mensah said with a deposit base of GH~36.06 million and total assets size of GH~ 47.18 million as of December 20l0,FCP currently commanded a deposit base of GH~211.11 million and total assets of GH~ 286.80 million.

Recent figures from the Bank of Ghana indicated that FCP commanded 16 per cent of the advances of savings and loans companies and 19 per cent of the sector's total assets," Mr Mensah said.

In September 2013, the bank was adjudged the non-bank financial institution of the year 2012 by the Chartered Institute of Marketing Ghana (CIMG) for the company's orientation to marketing and technological innovation, investment in corporate social responsibility and strong financial performance.

In October 2013, the FCP was adjudged the best performing company for the year 2012 and the best in the non-bank financial institutions sector at the Ghana Club 100 awards organised by the Ghana Investment Promotion Centre.