Kampala. A new name, a new logo and a new slogan. It seems like a new era for Barclays Africa Group, now trading as Absa Group.
The past two years have been a period of transformation for Barclays Africa after British-based Barclays PLC announced its intention to reduce its shareholding in the African market.
In June 2017, Barclays PLC reduced its shareholding from 62.3 per cent to 14.9 per cent.
The rebrand is seen as the bank’s opportunity to turn business around.
With changes at a group level and with opportunities from bancassurance, agent banking and oil and gas sector, Barclays is now looking at new opportunities for the Ugandan market.
“In South Africa, we have a thriving wealth and health insurance business. We have been running that in different markets on the continent. I definitely see that as a big opportunity for us to bring in products that are manufactured and delivered by wealth and heath management teams,” Mr Rakesh Jha, the Barclays Uganda managing director, said last week in Kampala.
As of December 31, 2017, Barclays Uganda recorded a 25 per cent growth.
The bank will be focusing on agency banking and bancassurance to redefine its growth which could see it double its market share and revenue in the next five years.
The Barclays brand will remain on the Ugandan market until June 2020 as it awaits regulatory approvals.
The same trend is expected throughout other nine subsidiaries in Botswana, Ghana and Kenya, among others starting June 2020.
Barclays is Uganda’s fifth biggest bank with an asset base of Shs2.477 trillion and shareholders’ equity of Shs448.2b.
Mr Jha said there will certainly be business continuity among the bank’s clients who are likely to leverage on its more than 90 years’ experience.
“Once we have become an independent pan-African bank, we will be able to bring innovative solutions that are fit for purpose in the geographies and markets that we operate,” he said.