BoU Assures Customers: Crane Bank is Safe

Bank of Uganda has come out to assure Crane Bank customers about the safety of their money following news of the Bank seeking to sell shares to strategic private investors, cost an issue that has caused discomfort among the Bank’s customers.

The intervention comes amid panic amongst Crane Bank customers in response to rumors that have been circulating over social media, try suggesting that the central bank instructed depositors to withdraw their money within the next week.

“It has been brought to our attention that messages have been circulating on whatsapp instructing depositors to withdraw their money from Crane Bank within the next week. We wish to categorically state that these messages were not issued by the Bank of Uganda, viagra approved ” Christine Alupo, Bank of Uganda’s Director Communications said in a statement.

She confirmed that they had received several enquiries about Crane Bank, which is one of 25 commercial banks licensed and supervised by the Central Bank.

“The shareholders of commercial banks have the option of selling shares to new investors as they deem appropriate,” she added.

Crane Bank chairman Joseph Biribonwa recently said the bank was looking for a “strategic equity investor, preferably with a regional and even better a continental network.”

Alupo however noted that for anyone to be considered eligible to invest in commercial banks, they must satisfy the regulator (Bank of Uganda) that they are fit and proper for the business.

Alupo observed that the central bank does not comment on any negotiations to sell shares in a bank, noting that as a regulator, all that BoU does is monitor the commercial banks in order to protect the interests of the depositors.


“The BOU does not comment on any negotiations to sell shares in a bank while these negotiations are ongoing. Nonetheless, the BOU monitors closely all commercial banks in Uganda and any actions which it takes are motivated primarily by the objective of protecting the best interests of banks’ depositors.”

Crane Bank, which has been in business for the last two decades with tycoon Sudhir Rupaleria’s family owning a 28 percent stake, remains one of the leading indigenous financial institutions in the country with now 46 branches around the country and over 100 ATMs.

The Bank recently extended her services across Ugandan borders, opening a branch in neighboring Rwanda, being the first locally owned commercial bank to have branches beyond Ugandan borders.

At an asset base of Shs1.79 trillion (December 2015), Crane Bank is the 4th biggest bank, controlling 4 percent market share.

Although the bank made a loss of Shs3.1 billion, the financial institution performed well on all other fundamentals.

It was also the number four biggest lender with Shs971.4 billion in loans and controlling 9.24 percent of the credit market.

Despite being one of the most profitable financial institutions in Uganda, Crane Bank last year recorded a Shs 3.1bn loss.

The Bank’s officials say they currently recovering loans and seek to increase its portfolio to be able to lend more customers.

Performance indicators

Officials said the Bank grew its deposits by 5.45 per cent to Shs 1,336,606 million, acquiring approximately 61,000 new accounts.

The Bank as of December 2015 audited accounts was the number five biggest in customer deposits, controlling 8.5 percent of market share.

It also had a robust income performance.

Net Operating income, grew by 4.3 per cent which reflected strong revenue growth.  Interest income grew by 9.4 per cent driven by increase in Loans and Advances.

The recently declared financials showed robust capital ratios.

Capital adequacy stands at 16.41 per cent and Core capital ratio stands at 15.74 per cent. Crane Banks paid up capital stands at Shs 210 billion as against the BOU requirements of Shs 25 billion.

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