Equity Group Holdings has withdrawn proposed dividend declaration and payment in what they say is market uncertainty.
In a statement, the lender says that the withdrawal is as a result of assessment of risk, post balance sheet date of December 31, 2019 and of the Group’s approach to prudent risk mitigation and management amidst the Covid-19 pandemic.
“COVID-19 global health pandemic has led to a great lockdown which has induced a complex and multi-faceted global crisis of health, economic, and social challenges of an unprecedented magnitude. The pandemic’s effects have created a significant drop in the global GDP, and a substantial loss of employment leading to an economic recession which economists are projecting will evolve into a global depression worse than the Great Depression of the 1930’s,” the Bank stated.
The bank recorded a 14 percent growth in profit after tax growth to Ksh22.6 billion for the year ended December 31, 2019.
With a 14 percent growth in earnings per share of Ksh5.93 up from Ksh5.22, the bank’s Board of Directors had proposed a 25 percent enhanced dividend payout of Ksh2.50 up from Ksh2.00 per share.
The shareholders were poised to receive Ksh9.5 billion, before the board changed its mind