Goh Betoch hits the ground running in its first year

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(Photo: Anteneh Aklilu)

Goh Betoch Bank (GBB), the first and only private mortgage bank since the mid 70s, attracts massive success in its less than three-quarter operation financial year.
The mortgage bank which opened its doors mid October 2021, disclosed that in its first year of operation it has registered a positive book despite hurdles faced in the financial industry.
In its annual report presented at the first general assembly held on Tuesday December 6, Getahun Nana, Board Chairperson and former long serving Vice Governor at the National Bank of Ethiopia, said that despite the bank being in operation for only eight months, it has recorded encouraging results both in financial and non-financial indicators.
“For a beginner bank, this is really a remarkable achievement,” he added on his report.
Getahun pointed out that the bank will start implementing its five year strategy in the current fiscal year stating, “However, mobilization of long term funds will be the single most important challenge for the bank in the coming years; hence GBB demands assistance from the government and other stakeholders in order to overcome the problem and achieve its goal of improving housing supply and affordability.”
Mulugeta Asmare, President of GBB, highlighted that the bank was upbeat by its first year’s success despite massive unfriendly environments, “GBB had been impacted by the economic instability, persistent inflation, socio political unrest, the global pandemic and Russia-Ukraine conflict, which affected the banking industry activities directly.”
The founding President, who has a sea of experience in the banking industry, added that since GBB is currently the sole mortgage financier it was difficult to harbor expertise and shared experience within the context of Ethiopia, and for this reason the bank has had to pave the way as a torch bearer in navigating through the best financial routes.
“Nonetheless, GBB has overcome these uncertainties and achieved historic milestones anchoring the bank on solid ground to maintain its growth in a sustainable manner to meet shareholders’ requirements and management’s expectations,” Mulugeta said on the report.
During the reporting year which closed on June 30, 2022, the bank generated 122 million birr while the deposit mobilization carried out at its four branches stood at about 257 million birr with its customer surpassing 5,000.
Of the total, depositors’ commitment savings for mortgage loan deposits accounted for over 56 percent followed by demand deposit and regular savings with close to 24 and 20 percentages respectively.
In the stated period, the bank’s asset capped at 1.2 billion birr while the equity level was 787.5 million birr.

(Photo: Anteneh Aklilu)

In its eight months operation, the bank disbursed 302 million birr in loans to which the major share of the loan portfolio, 36 percent, went to commercial mortgage or real estate.
Similarly, residential and diasporas mortgage loans constituted 33 percent while the international trade took 17 percent of the total loans and advances.
With its operation, the bank that has 780 million birr in paid up capital has secured almost eight million birr in gross profit, which is a rarity compared to the experience in the sector. The profit after tax has boosted the bank to register positives in the earnings per share (EPS).
According to the audit report, the bank was able to register 14 percent of EPS for 1,000 birr par value.
Goh is the first mortgage financier after the Housing and Saving Bank (HSB) that was formed by the merger of Imperial Savings and Home Ownership Association and the Savings and Mortgage Corporation of Ethiopia in mid 1970s during the Derg period. HSB was also reconstituted to Construction and Business Bank (CBB), which was mainly engaged on commercial banking services up until 1994 when it was dissolved and merged under the state giant Commercial Bank of Ethiopia in 2016.
During the Derg era several urban dwellers mainly civil servants and housing associations benefited from the plan by HSB to own their property in cities and towns of the country. Even though the HSB loan scheme realized their wish to own houses, the scheme did not continue as usual after the fall of the Derg regime.
Since then the housing scheme has been neglected from the loan scheme of the financial firms until the condo housing project was introduced by the government in 2004, which is fully controlled by the government. Lease has also been the other option to secure a plot and construct residential houses; however it is not affordable for the masses. Experts argued that the condo housing project is vulnerable to corruption in the construction stage and lottery process besides poor performance in the accomplishment.