After successfully listing in the Botswana Stock Exchange Limited (BSEL), the directors of the Botswana Building Society remain optimistic to be granted a commercial banking licence by the Bank of Botswana.
BBS board Chairman,Taolelo Mosetlhi said they are targeting the second half of 2019 to start operating as a commercial bank. “We are hopeful that our application to the Bank of Botswana for a banking licence will be successful,” said Mosetlhi. BBS was incorporated as a company (BBS Limited) in April and was the first to list on BSE’s over the counter platform called Serala last week. This enables the company to trade their shares at any given time.
Commenting on BBS financial results for the year ended March 2018, Mosetlhi said until they are issued with a commercial banking licence by the Bank of Botswana, it will continue to conduct the business of a building society. Currently, ordinary shares of existing holders of relevant accounts such as the paid up, indefinite period and Subscription are now listed on Serala.
BBS recorded an increase in profit to P49.9 million compared to P47.8 million in 2017. “It increased by four percent compared to the prior year which affirms the resilience of our business. However, we can only build on this success if we can transform BBS quickly into a commercial bank,” said Mosetlhi.The board recommended lower dividend of P57, 8 million to its shareholders this year compared to P59. 3 million last year.
The chairman indicated that the decline is mainly due to the reduction of the interest rate by 50 basis points by the Bank of Botswana in October 2017.