On Wednesday, 13th November the Federal Minister for IT & Telecommunications Dr. Khalid Maqbool Siddiqui visited U Microfinance Bank Ltd. Head Quarters – ( a wholly-owned subsidiary of PTCL – Etisalat) in Islamabad.
Over the last 4 years, U Microfinance Bank has made important contributions towards the implementation and achievement of the national financial inclusion agenda put forth in the National Financial Inclusion Strategy 2023 that aims to bring 50% of Pakistan’s adult population into the banking net. Over these years the bank has demonstrated exceptional growth and our network outreach has gone from 28 branches to 200 branches with its portfolio having grown from PKR 900 million to PKR 21 billion as of closing figures for the last quarter (ending September 2019). U Bank also boasts of 305,000 active borrowers and 400,000 depositors with a deposit base of PKR 20 billion. In 2018, the bank also recorded an impressive profit growth of 111% compared to the previous year. In addition, the bank’s net equity has gone from PKR 1 billion to currently PKR 2.5 billion tier I and PKR 4 billion tier II.
The Federal Minister for IT lauded the U Bank management team for a remarkable turn-around story of the Bank. President & CEO of U Microfinance Bank –Kabeer Naqvi added that we as a microfinance bank are fully committed toward the economic enablement of the Pakistani citizens and firmly believe that U Bank can play a significant role in delivering on this national agenda.
U Microfinance Bank contribution towards the achievement of the Sustainable Development Goals & National Financial Inclusion Strategy – NFIS goes beyond simply financial uplifting and increasing income – rather the bank, with its vast range of creative products and the services positively impact health, education, house-hold emergency management capacity, woman empowerment/gender equality, small industry uplifting, as well as providing environmental protection and renewable energy, among others.
As an organization, U Bank also remains primed to become a forerunner in the future of banking by solving the critical challenges faced by customers and providing them with ever-improving value-added services. Having established its physical footprint across the nation, the next challenge that the bank is taking on is that of digital transformation to further expand its reach to customers at the last mile who have historically remained neglected by the banking industry. According to a study by Google, by 2030 Pakistan is projected to be the fourth fastest-growing digital economy thanks to the significant gains in IT/Telecom infrastructure and connectivity (with further investments being made still), e-commerce, e-governance, and service delivery, digital finance education and agriculture (land record digitization, farming advisory services etc.)
U Bank, for years 2020 and beyond, aims to achieve operational excellence by investing in and leveraging technology to set industry standards while benefitting from process automation and innovation. The bank will also continue to use its branchless banking license in catering to the last mile customer. Branchless Banking and digitization will thus remain two key focus areas for the bank. U Bank has embarked upon the journey towards becoming a digital bank that is prepared to deliver value and services via technology, enabling it to potentially become one of the most accessible banks in the country, whilst ensuring that it continues to substantively contribute to the SDGs & NFIS goals.