Equity Group Holdings Limited
TypePublic Company
IndustryBanking and Finance
PredecessorEquity Building Society
9th Floor, Equity Centre
Hospital Road, Upper Hill
Nairobi, Kenya
Number of locations
463 branch banks[1] (2021)
Key people
Isaac Macharia
James Mwangi
Group CEO
ProductsLoans, mortgages, investments, debit cards, credit cards, Health, Insurance
  • Increase Kshs 51.6 Billion (H1 2021)
  • Kshs 38.7B (H1 2020)
Total assetsKSh1.119.7 Trillion (approx US$10.19 billion) (H1 2021)[5]
Number of employees
8,959 (2019)[6]
RatingLong Term-rating Scale: AA-(KE), Short-term rating Scale: A1(KE), Rating Outlook: Stable - July 2021 [7]

Equity Group Holdings Limited (EGHL), formerly Equity Bank Group, is a financial services holding company based in the African Great Lakes region. EGHL's headquarters are in Nairobi, Kenya, with subsidiaries in Kenya, Uganda, Tanzania, South Sudan, Rwanda, Democratic Republic of the Congo and a representative office in Ethiopia.[8]


EGHL is the largest financial services conglomerate in East and Central Africa. As of August 2021, it had assets exceeding KSh 1.119 Trillion (US$10.1 billion). The group also had over 14 million customers in six African Great Lakes countries, with KSh790.6 billion (US$7.61 billion) in deposits.[4]

In June 2008, EGHL was voted by Euromoney Awards for Excellence as the best bank in Kenya. EGHL was named the overall best bank in Kenya at the Renaissance Capital Bank Awards in August 2008 and was cited locally as the only stock that returned positive shareholder value during 2008 at the Nairobi Stock Exchange. EGHL was named as the Best Performing Company in Africa during the annual African Investor Index Awards, held on 21 September 2009, in New York City.[9] EGHL has exclusive rights to issue American Express credit cards across the African continent outside South Africa.[10] As of the financial year ending 2020, EGHL reported an asset base worth Ksh1.015 trillion ($9.244 billion). The total group of customers was 14.3 million, with Ksh740.8 billion ($6.74 billion) in deposits.[5]

In 2019, over 97% of EGHL transactions were done outside branches; with 79% via money and 11% via agency. In July 2020, the Euromoney Awards for Excellence voted EGHL as the Best Bank in Africa and for the second time in a row, the Best Digital Bank in Africa.[11]

In 2021, 98% of the Groups transactions by count were done via its digital platforms which represented 65% of total value of transactions conducted by the group's customers.[4] As of June 2021, EGHL total assets were valued at KSh1.12 trillion (US$10.12 billion), with shareholders' funds valued at US$1,096,000,000 (KSh121,279,000,000). At that time the bank group had over 15 million customers and was the largest financial institution in East and Central Africa, when measured by total assets and shareholders' equity.[12]


EGHL was founded in Kenya, the largest economy in the East African Community, as the Equity Building Society (EBS) in October 1984.[13] EBS was originally a provider of mortgage financing for customers in the low income population. Also, due to its rural banking orientation, promotion of agribusiness is a significant and strategic intervention by the bank. By September 2015, Equity Bank had more than 9.2 million customers.[14] The Banker listed Equity Bank among the Top 1,000 Banks in the World with the highest return on assets in the African continent, generating a rate of 6.84 per cent on assets deployed.[15]

Prior to November 2014, Equity Bank was both a licensed bank and a holding company for its subsidiaries. On 31 October 2014, Equity Bank Group announced its intention to incorporate a new wholly owned subsidiary, Equity Bank Kenya Limited, to which it would transfer its Kenyan banking business, assets and liabilities. The rationale for the re-organisation is that by converting Equity Bank into a non-trading holding company that owns both banking and non-banking subsidiary companies and provides strategic, brand, risk and talent management to its subsidiaries, the Group will be better placed to invest and to develop the existing and new businesses as part of its third phase of growth and transformation.[16] These resolutions were all adopted during an extraordinary shareholders general meeting held on 24 November 2014 leading to the formation of Equity Bank Kenya Limited.[17]

In September 2015, the group completed its acquisition of 79 percent of DR Congo based ProCredit Bank Congo SARL from Procredit Group.[18] This acquisition marked the group's entry into sub-Saharan Africa’s third most populous country.[13][19]

In April 2019, The EastAfrican newspaper reported that Equity Group had signed binding memoranda with Atlas Mara Limited (ATMA), to acquire banking units belonging to ATMA, in Zambia, Mozambique, Tanzania and Rwanda, in a share swap valued at US$105.71 million (KSh10.7 billion).[20] The acquisition includes 62 percent of Banque Populaire du Rwanda, 100 percent of African Banking Corporation of Zambia, African Banking Corporation of Mozambique and African Banking Corporation of Tanzania. The transaction requires approval from regulators and shareholders from the five countries involved.[21] In exchange for that ownership, ATMA will receive 6.27 percent shareholding in Equity Group Holdings Limited.[20][21]

In June 2020, the New Times (Rwanda) newspaper reported that the ...."binding term sheet that has been signed for the proposed acquisition of Atlas Mara Group’s assets in Rwanda, Tanzania, Mozambique and Zambia had expired with the parties not having signed detailed transaction agreements".... Those plans were called off at that time.[22]

In September 2019, Equity Bank Group began talks to acquire a controlling stake in Banque Commerciale du Congo (BCDC), the second-largest commercial bank in the Democratic Republic of the Congo.[23] If and when the transaction is concluded, the new acquisition is expected to be merged with the existing Equity Bank Congo.[24] In August 2020, Equity Group Holdings paid US$95 million (approx. KES:10.2 billion), for a 66.5 percent ownership in BCDC. Once the regulatory approvals are obtained, BCDC will be integrated into Equity Bank Congo.[25]

In October 2019, The Group rebranded to Equity thereby eliminating the entity names the various subsidiaries previously carried like Group, Bank, Insurance, or Investment Bank thereby unifying the various brands according to the group MD and CEO, James Mwangi.This happened as the Group commemorated its 35th anniversary.[26]

On 30 December 2020, Equity Group Holdings received regulatory approval from the DRC government to merge Equity Bank Congo (EBC) and the Banque Commerciale du Congo (BCDC) into Equity BCDC.[27] In August 2021, data from EGHL reported that in six months ending June, Equity BCDC made a Ksh700 million ($6.37 million) profit before taxation making it the most profitable subsidiary of the group.[28] This successful acquisition made EGHL surpass the Kshs 1 Trillion balance sheet mark making it the first bank in East and Central Africa to achieve that.[29]

In August 2021, EGHL became the second most capitalized corporate entity at the Nairobi stock Exchange after hitting Kshs 200 Billion market capitalization mark.[30]


The stock of Equity Group Holdings Limited is traded on the Nairobi Securities Exchange, under the symbol: EQTY. On Thursday 18 June 2009, the Group's stock cross listed on the Uganda Securities Exchange and started trading that day, under the symbol: EBL.[31] As of December 2016, shareholding in the group's stock was as depicted in the table below:[32] As of 31 December 2020, shareholding in the group's stock was as depicted in the table below;[5]

Equity Group Holdings Limited Stock Ownership
Rank Name of Owner Percentage Ownership
1. Arise BV of Norway and Netherlands 11.99[32][33]
2. Stanbic Nominees LTD A/C NR3530153 3.49
3. James Njuguna Mwangi 3.38
4. British-American Investments Company Kenya Limited 3.15
5. Equity Bank Employees' Share Ownership Plan 2.86
6. Fortress Highlands Limited 2.67
7. AIB Nominee A/C Solidus Holdings Ltd 2.38
8. Maewa Holdings Ltd 1.70
9. Equity Bank Nominees Limited A/C 00104 2.29
10. Equity Nominees Limited A/C 00161 1.69
11. 28,304 Other Investors 64.33
Total 100.00

Board of directors

The following are the board members of Equity Group Holdings Limited, as of July 2021.[34]

  1. Isaac Macharia, Chairman
  2. James Mwangi, CBS, Group Managing Director & CEO
  3. Mary Wamae - Executive Director
  4. Dr. Edward Odundo - Non-executive Director
  5. Evelyn Rutagwenda - Non-executive Director
  6. Vijay Gidoomal - Non-executive Director
  7. Dr. Helen Gichohi - Non-executive Director
  8. Jonas Mushosho - Non-executive Director
  9. Lydia Ndirangu - Group company Secretary

Member companies

The companies that compose the Equity Group Holdings Limited include but are not limited to the following:

  1. Equity Bank Kenya LimitedNairobi, Kenya Kenya – 100% Shareholding – A commercial bank in Kenya, serving individuals and businesses.
  2. Equity Bank Rwanda LimitedKigali, Rwanda Rwanda[35][36] – 100% Shareholding – A commercial bank in Rwanda, serving both individuals and businesses.
  3. Equity Bank South Sudan LimitedJuba, South Sudan South Sudan – 100% Shareholding – A commercial bank in South Sudan.[37]
  4. Equity Bank Tanzania LimitedDar es Salaam, Tanzania Tanzania[38] – 100% Shareholding – A commercial bank in Tanzania.
  5. Equity Bank Uganda LimitedKampala, Uganda Uganda – 100% Shareholding – A commercial bank in Uganda.
  6. Equity BCDCKinshasa, Democratic Republic of the Congo Democratic Republic of the Congo: 77.5 percent Shareholding – A commercial bank in DR Congo.[37][39]
  7. Equity Consulting Group Limited – Nairobi, Kenya Kenya
  8. Equity Insurance Agency Limited – Nairobi, Kenya Kenya – 100% Shareholding – The insurance agency arm of the group. Offering bancassurance services to customers
  9. Equity Nominees Limited – Nairobi, Kenya Kenya – 100% Shareholding – A Nominee company.[40] Holding investments on behalf of customers.[32]
  10. Equity Investment Bank Limited – Nairobi, Kenya Kenya[41] – 100% Shareholding – An investment bank in Kenya. A member of the Nairobi Securities Exchange and licensed by the Capital Markets Authority.
  11. Finserve Africa LimitedNairobi, Kenya Kenya – 100% Shareholding – A mobile virtual network operator (MVNO) in the Kenya.
  12. Equity Group FoundationNairobi, Kenya Kenya – 100% Shareholding – The philanthropy and corporate social responsibility arm of the group.
  13. Azenia - Nairobi, Kenya—100% Shareholding – A technological affiliate for developing digital solutions to the group.

See also


  1. ^ "INVESTOR BRIEFING H1 2021 PERFORMANCE" (PDF). Retrieved 30 August 2021.
  2. ^ "David Ansell retires as Equity Group Board Chair as Professor Isaac Macharia takes over the baton". David Ansell retires as Equity Group Board Chair as Professor Isaac Macharia takes over the baton. Business daily Africa. Retrieved 28 August 2021.
  3. ^ Gachane, Ndung'u (1 August 2018). "Retiring Equity Bank chairman takes his successor to where it all began". Business Daily Africa. Nairobi. Retrieved 1 August 2018.
  4. ^ a b c "INVESTOR BRIEFING Q1 2021 PERFORMANCE" (PDF). Retrieved 7 September 2021.
  6. ^ Victor Juma (5 July 2019). "Equity deal adds 2,641 new staff to payroll". Business Daily Africa. Nairobi. Retrieved 5 July 2019.
  7. ^ "GCR affirms the AA-(KE)/A1+(KE) Ratings of Equity Group Holdings Plc, Ratings Placed on Stable Outlook to reflect easing operating environment pressure and performance resilience – GCR". Retrieved 18 September 2021.
  8. ^ Wahito, Margaret (26 May 2015). "Equity Group enters DRC market". Nairobi: 98.4 Capital FM. Retrieved 24 March 2018.
  9. ^ Juuko, Sylvia (28 September 2009). "Equity Scoops Best Company Awards". New Vision (Kampala). Archived from the original on 29 June 2015. Retrieved 23 November 2014.
  10. ^ Okuttah, Mark (15 October 2014). "Equity Bank To Issue AmEx Cards Across Africa". Business Daily Africa (Nairobi). Retrieved 23 November 2014.
  11. ^ "Equity recognized as the best bank in Africa at the 2020 Euromoney Awards". Equity recognized as the best bank in Africa at the 2020 Euromoney Awards. Equity Group Holdings. Retrieved 28 August 2021.
  12. ^ Carolyne Tanui (4 November 2021). "Kenya: Equity Ranked Among the World's 1,000 Biggest Banks" (via AllAfrica.com). Capital FM News. Nairobi, Kenya. Retrieved 6 November 2021.
  13. ^ a b EGHL (22 October 2016). "Equity Group Holdings Limited: Our History". Nairobi: Equity Group Holdings Limited (EGHL). Retrieved 22 October 2016.
  14. ^ Mark Okuttah (6 March 2015). "CBA now biggest retail bank with 10 million customers 2016". Business Daily Africa. Nairobi. Retrieved 22 October 2016.
  15. ^ Business Daily Reporter (22 July 2014). "Super Profits Earn Equity, KCB Top Global Rankings". Business Daily Africa. Nairobi. Retrieved 23 November 2014.
  16. ^ EBG (31 October 2014). "Circular To Shareholders for The Transfer of The Kenyan Banking Business To A Newly Created, Wholly Owned Subsidiary". Equity Bank Group (EBG). Archived from the original on 12 November 2014. Retrieved 23 November 2014.
  17. ^ EBG (24 November 2014). "Results of the Extra-ordinary General Meeting of Equity Bank Limited held on 24th November, 2014". Nairobi: Equity Bank Group (EBG). Retrieved 26 November 2014.[permanent dead link]
  18. ^ Brian Ngugi (17 September 2015). "Equity Bank Completes Acquisition of DRC's ProCredit Bank". Business Daily Africa. Nairobi. Retrieved 17 September 2015.
  19. ^ Obulutsa, George (26 May 2015). "Kenya's Equity Bank To Expand To Congo via Acquisition - CEO". Thomson Reuters. Retrieved 26 May 2015.
  20. ^ a b Business Daily Africa (30 April 2019). "Equity To Acquire Banks In Four African Countries In $105 Million Deal". The EastAfrican. Nairobi. Retrieved 30 April 2019.
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  22. ^ Collins Mwai (23 June 2020). "Why Equity Bank's plans to acquire BPR have been called off". New Times (Rwanda). Kigali. Retrieved 23 June 2020.
  23. ^ Adonijah Ochieng (9 September 2019). "Equity To Expand In DRC With Acquisition of Second-Largest Bank". Business Daily Africa. Nairobi. Retrieved 15 September 2019.
  24. ^ Patrick Alushula (11 September 2019). "Equity tipped to spend Sh17bn in DRC bank deal". Business Daily Africa. Nairobi. Retrieved 15 September 2019.
  25. ^ Victor Juma (12 August 2020). "Equity pays Sh1bn less in buyout of DRC bank". Business Daily Africa. Nairobi. Retrieved 12 August 2020.
  26. ^ October 03 2019, Thursday (8 December 2020). "Equity rebrands in growth push". Business Daily. Retrieved 7 September 2021.
  27. ^ Owino, Julie (31 December 2020). "Equity Bank Congo and Banque Commerciale Du Congo (BCDC) receive regulatory approval for merger". Capital Business. Retrieved 28 August 2021.
  28. ^ August 21, 2018, Tuesday (27 December 2020). "Equity Bank's DRC branch becomes most profitable subsidiary". Business Daily. Retrieved 28 August 2021.
  29. ^ "Equity Group's Balance Sheet Crosses $10 Billion Mark After BCDC Migration". Retrieved 30 August 2021.
  30. ^ "Equity Group hits Ksh200B market capitalization". Retrieved 30 August 2021.
  31. ^ Newvision, Archive (21 June 2009). "Equity Bank Cross-Lists On USE". New Vision. Kampala. Archived from the original on 21 October 2014. Retrieved 23 November 2014.
  32. ^ a b c Ngugi, Brian (7 July 2017). "Dutch banking giant gets Equity shares". Business Daily Africa. Nairobi. Retrieved 7 July 2017.
  33. ^ Gachiri, John (18 January 2015). "Norwegians Snap Up Equity Stake In Africa Buying Blitz". Business Daily Africa. Nairobi. Retrieved 19 January 2015.
  34. ^ Bloomberg Research (22 October 2016). "Company Overview of Equity Group Holdings Limited: Board Members". Bloomberg.com. Retrieved 22 October 2016.
  35. ^ Namata, Berna (4 April 2011). "Equity Gets Kigali's Nod To Set Up Shop In Rwanda". The EastAfrican (Nairobi). Retrieved 23 November 2014.
  36. ^ Staff Reporter, . (7 November 2011). "Rwanda: Equity Bank Enters Rwanda". East African Business Week (Kampala). Retrieved 23 November 2014.CS1 maint: numeric names: authors list (link)
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  39. ^ Adonijah Ochieng (9 September 2019). "Equity To Expand In DRC With Acquisition of Second-Largest Bank". Business Daily Africa. Nairobi. Retrieved 8 October 2019.
  40. ^ "Nominee Director and Nominee Companies". www.offshore-islands.com. Retrieved 13 May 2015.[permanent dead link]
  41. ^ Kangethe, Kennedy (19 August 2013). "Kenya: CBA Capital, Equity Investment Bank Join NSE". 98.4 Capital FM (Nairobi) via AllAfrica.com. Retrieved 28 November 2014.