Despite the realities and misconceptions about the Zimbabwean economy and its finance sector, there is a functional banking system in the country and financial institutions thriving in that economy. This article interacts with top ten of the best banks in Zimbabwe by assets, but before we delve deeper let’s take a look at the general atmosphere under which banks in Zimbabwe operate.
The Central Bank
The Reserve Bank of Zimbabwe (RBZ) was founded in 1964, and under the control of a Governor it is the central monetary authority of the country. The RBZ plays big brother to all financial institutions in the country regardless of size. Monetary policy formulation and implemental, price controls, and the drive towards achieving stable financial system are all key responsibilities of the central bank.
Leading Banks By Assets
For customers, it is easier to trust a more successful bank as this gives a sense of security towards their money. This list will not only benefit them, but also those who may be thinking of a banking career in Zimbabwe. Here are the top ten banks in Zimbabwe.
1. Standard Chartered Bank Zimbabwe
Standard Chartered Bank Zimbabwe has been in operation in the country since it’s Incorporation in 1983. The bank has been the most consistent financial institution when it comes to offering comprehensive, personal and corporate banking products and services. Assets are not the only factor placing this bank on top of the list of the best banks in Zimbabwe. Standard Chartered Zimbabwe has also received several prestigious awards.
Global Finance just gave them the Best Bank in Zimbabwe 2021 award. Standard Chartered is headquartered in Harare and has a net income ZWL 335.5 billion and ZWL 2.90 trillion worth of total assets.
2. Commercial Bank of Zimbabwe (CBZ Bank)
CBZ Bank is second on the list of the best banks in Zimbabwe. It was formerly known as Bank of Credit and Commerce before it was taken over by the Government of Zimbabwe in 1991 and renamed to Commercial Bank of Zimbabwe Ltd in 2004. The bank offers various financial products and services to individual and corporate customers.
After adopting the name CBZ, the bank became a subsidiary of CBZ Holdings. To date, the bank has 66 branches across the country. With a net income of ZWL 5.07 billion, CBZ bank’s total assets are worth ZWL 94.88 billion.
3. ZB Bank Limited of Zimbabwe
ZB Bank Limited is the third best bank in Zimbabwe. With it’s Headquarters in Harare, the bank operates 47 branches across the nation. The origins of ZB Bank date back to 1951 with Netherlands Bank of South Africa, which was established in that year. Hands shifted in 1992 and the bank became a subsidiary of Zimbabwe Financial Holdings Limited (ZBFH).
Read: Top 10 Banks in UK
The name ZB Bank Limited emerged in 2006, when the board decided to go with a “monolithic brand.”
The bank’s net income and total assets are; ZWL 1.3 billion, and ZWL 44.3 billion respectively.
3. FBC Bank
FBC Bank is quite a modern bank in Zimbabwe yet it has done so well among established financial corporation. Perhaps the reason is them being a fully owned subsidiary of a renowned financial services conglomerate, FBC Holdings Limited. The bank is one of the banks that offer the broadest range of financial products and services; from retail and SME banking, private banking, corporate and institutional banking, to diaspora banking services. They boast of a net income of ZWL 1.51 billion and total assets worth ZWL 32.40 billion.
4. First Capital Bank
First Capital Bank, is arguably the newest name in the Zimbabwean banking sector after the bank changed from Barclays Bank of Zimbabwe. The bank, which is a subsidiary of Afcarme Zimbabwe Holdings, offers a wide range of financial services from personal banking, commercial banking, right up to internet banking services to customers.
First Capital Bank is one of the oldest banks in Zimbabwe. It was established and started operations in the country in 1912. The National Bank of South Africa purchased Bank of Africa and subsequently changed names to become Barclays Bank which was South Africa-controlled. First Capital Bank operates network of 32 branches and has a net income of ZWL 1.74 billion. Total asset value of the bank lies at ZWL 13.91 billion.
5. Ecobank Zimbabwe
Ecobank Zimbabwe is one of the latest that came in to the country’s banking sector. The company- as a merchant bank- started work in 2002 under the banner, Premier Finance Group. Ecobank received it’s commercial banking license in 2012- a year after it adopted its current name. This came as subsequent to Ecobank Transnational’s acquisition of a controlling stake in Premier Finance.
With a network of only 12 branches, Ecobank has a net income of ZWL 817 million and total assets valued at ZWL 8.07 billion. If you are in search of either retail or investment banking services, Ecobank is home for those. The bank is also involved with equity-linked products.
6. Stanbic Bank Zimbabwe
Stanbic Bank Zimbabwe operations as a commercial bank in the country in 1992. This happened after they became part of the Standard Bank Group. Currently the bank is a “fully owned subsidiary of Stanbic Bank Investment Corporation.” The bank offers an array of financial services.
A few of them are; personal banking, commercial and enterprise banking, corporate banking, along with investment, among others. In 2020 Stanbic Bank was named the best bank in Zimbabwe by “The Banker.” Their net income is ZWL 477.4 million and total assets are worth ZWL 7.53 billion.
7. Steward Bank
The company became Steward Bank Incorporated in 2013 when the owners, Econet Wireless Zimbabwe Limited became the major shareholder of TN Bank and a name change was necessitayed. The bank was incorporated in 1970 and received its commercial banking license in 2008.
In terms of technology, Steward bank leads the Zimbabwean banking sector with innovative financial solutions. This made possible by their combined use of technology and telecommunications.
Their net income sits at ZWL 274.5 million and total assets at ZWL 3.30 billion.
8. BancABC Zimbabwe (ABC Holdings Ltd)
BancABC Zimbabwe has a Net income of ZWL -2.8 million and total assets worth ZWL 2.04 billion making it the sixth best bank in the land. The bank is a subsidiary of “pan-African financial services provider” ABC Holdings Limited. Retail, business, and wholesale banking services are among the financial services offered by BancABC throughout Zimbabwe. The bank started operations in the country in 1956 and now employs 1,501 in a total of 19 branches and 35 ATMs.
9. Agricultural Development Bank of Zimbabwe (Agribank)
Founded in 1971 under the banner Agricultural Finance Corporation, this mid-tier financial services provider adopted the name Agriculture Development Bank (Agribank) in 2002. This happened when the Zimbabwean government undertook land redistribution and wanted to avail funding to farmers.
Now the bank offers; retail, corporate, commercial, and international banking services in Zimbabwe through 45 Branches. Net income for Agribank sits at ZWL 33 million, while its total assets are valued at ZWL 1.52 billion.
10. CBZ Bank
Its one of the best bank in Zimbabwe and has been voted Zimbabwe’s best performing bank previously by the most respected USA financial based Global Finance Magazine. CBZ bank, during the institution’s 28th prestige annual awards for the World’s Best Banks in the year 2019 was recognized for the achievement and given third successive feat for the bank leading feature on the country’s banking sector and financial system.
These banks are important for delivery of money and play key role in the economic recovery. Hence Best Banks In Zimbabwe, have exercised highlights in restoring growth and mapping a way forward to improve the country,” said banking expert Mr Joseph D. Giarraputo, an experienced publisher of Global Finance.