Top 25 Most Customer-Centric Brands Impacting Lives in 2024

NCBA’s unwavering commitment to customer-centricity, innovation, and strategic growth positions it as a market leader

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NCBA BANK

In the realm of corporate excellence, customer centricity stands as the cornerstone for fostering enduring relationships and sustainable success. It embodies a strategic ethos where every decision, innovation, and service is meticulously crafted with the customer at its core. This philosophy revolves around the relentless pursuit of understanding, anticipating, and exceeding customer expectations, transforming each interaction into a personalised journey. It is the art of listening actively, adapting proactively, and consistently delivering unparalleled value.

This unwavering dedication to customer-centric practices serves as a guiding principle, permeating every facet of NCBA Bank’s operations, reflecting its commitment to ‘Inspire Greatness’ as the ‘Twende Mbele’ brand communication motivates over 63 million customers across Africa to persist in their aspirations and boldly ‘Go For It.’

As the sunrise signals the commencement of customers’ daily routines, NCBA stands poised to fuel ambitions. Standing as Kenya’s third-largest bank, NCBA experiences rapid growth across Africa, extending its presence to Rwanda, Uganda, and Tanzania, with a digital footprint in Côte d’Ivoire.

NCBA Group MD and CEO John Gachora (right) and Kamkunji MP, Hon. Abdi Yusuf Hassan during a customer
engagement session at NCBA Eastleigh branch located at Business Bay Square Mall on May 22, 2024.

The lender propels itself with a commitment to deliver exceptional and innovative products and services tailored to meet each individual’s unique needs. From customised personal banking solutions to scalable business banking offerings, NCBA stands out as a true market leader in corporate banking, asset finance, digital banking, and lately, retail banking.

This industry prominence is underscored by the exemplary and progressive leadership of Group Managing Director (MD) John Gachora, whose continuous guidance defines NCBA’s trajectory and contributes significantly to its undeniable success.

In March 2024, NCBA revealed impressive strides in its financial performance for 2023, marking a significant leap with a profit after tax reaching KES 21.5 billion. This reflects a notable 56 percent surge from the KES 13.8 billion recorded in a similar period in 2022. The robust outcomes were primarily attributed to positive operating income and a noteworthy 29.9 percent decrease in loan impairment charges year on year (YoY). During the announcement of the Full Year 2023 financial results, Gachora emphasised the sustained growth trajectory aligned with the brand’s five-year strategic plan. This steadfast approach has not only bolstered shareholder value but also provided crucial support to customers amidst a challenging macroeconomic backdrop.

The prevailing economic uncertainties underscore the necessity for heightened investments in enhancing customer experience. The collective strengths derived from the diversified business model will continue to be harnessed to enhance shareholder value.

In contrast to the prevailing trend of downsizing and branch closures among banks, NCBA is strategically expanding its retail footprint and moving closer to its customer base, as a key priority. This proactive approach aims to enhance its retail business and prioritise customer convenience in accessing financial services. The new branches, designed to be 33 percent smaller yet aesthetically pleasing, offer the bank the advantage of enhanced cost efficiency without compromising on customer experience.

This deliberate expansion significantly increases brand recognition, attracts fresh customers, and fosters stronger loyalty. Recent expansions of NCBA’s branch network include Kahawa Sukari, reinforcing its influence in the Kiambu region; Wote Town, addressing the financial needs of Makueni County, and Ruaka Town responding adeptly to the burgeoning growth of the Nairobi Metropolitan Area. NCBA’s unwavering commitment remains centred on delivering world-class financial solutions through a diverse range of products and services tailored to local needs while embracing global innovation.

Further towards the lender’s customer-centric focus, NCBA recently revealed plans to acquire 100 percent of AIG Kenya Insurance Company. Gachora, expressing the rationale, emphasised the growing importance of insurance as a fundamental financial need for NCBA’s customer base. By uniting its physical and digital distribution platforms with AIG Kenya’s insurance capabilities, the bank aims to become a universal financial institution meeting all customer financial needs. The acquisition positions the regional banking group to capitalise on AIG Kenya’s breadth and scale across East Africa.

With an esteemed legacy in Asset Finance spanning nearly six decades, NCBA was the first bank to provide financing for electric vehicles, exemplifying its dedication to meeting evolving customer needs. This commitment is reinforced by the allocation of a significant KES 2 billion loan portfolio exclusively dedicated to electric vehicle financing, maintaining a competitive edge and solidifying its reputation as a trailblazer.

NCBA’s consolidation of mobile banking apps into the highly rated NCBA Mobile Banking app has streamlined processes, cut costs, and enhanced the customer experience. Key improvements include Invest NOW & Unit Trust Automation, Card Control Services, KRA Payments, Account Balance Masking, and Insurance Payments Automation. In 2023, NCBA saved 19,320 man-hours through Robotic Process Automation (RPA), with 99 percent of new accounts opened via the mobile app. Mobile transactions grew by 36 percent, with a USD 10 million investment leading to faster processes, social media responses, automated audits, and transactions. These investments highlight NCBA’s dedication to technological advancement and customer-centric solutions.

NCBA additionally showcases its commitment to customer-centricity through strategic partnerships and event sponsorships, such as the inaugural NCBA-KMI Motor Show. In a significant first-time sponsorship, NCBA collaborated with over 20 car dealerships, offering a comprehensive experience for car enthusiasts and buyers. With a consistent market leadership in vehicle financing, commanding over 35 percent market share, NCBA plays a pivotal role in supporting the socio-economic development of a vibrant transport industry.

NCBA Group Managing Director John Gachora pens down his signature on a car during the official opening of the three-day NCBA– KMI Motorshow 2023 held on 15th September 2023 at Sarit Centre, Nairobi.

Furthermore, the NCBA Golf Series reflects the bank’s dedication to engaging with customers through diverse interests. The picturesque and challenging 18-hole course provides an exciting platform for participants and spectators alike.

NCBA’s unwavering commitment to customer-centricity, innovation, and strategic growth positions it as a market leader. The bank consistently adapts to evolving customer needs, solidifying its dedication to inspiring greatness and meeting the dynamic needs of its diverse customer base.

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Dr. Hanningtone Gaya

Dr. Hanningtone Gaya

Kenya’s Dr Hanningtone Gaya, holds a PhD in Commerce in Business Management from Nelson Mandela University (NMU), is viewed as an authority in country branding and is the founder chairman of the Brand Kenya Board.

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