Agora companies show strong results for 2017
AMK finished a challenging 2017 with very credible results. Despite regulatory changes, interest rate cap, and a competitive market, AMK increased both its loan book and its deposit balance by around 35%, while maintaining a satisfactory PAR30 level of just under 1.5% as on year-end. Its micro-insurance product saw a strong growth of almost 50% to reach 286,000 policies sold during 2017. Similarly, its money transfer and payroll/payment facility saw almost 2 million transactions during the year, a 23% increase over the previous year.
AMK continues to reach deep into the market and work with a large number of lower income families. Its average insurance policy costs $6.72, the average deposit balance is $300, and the average money transfer is $291. Its client satisfaction reports for 2017 showed that its poorest clients are its happiest insurance customers. As a result of its wide geographic and product coverage, AMK showed strong financial performance with a RoE of 14% even while its lending yield contracted by 15% over the previous year as a result of the new interest cap introduced in Cambodia. As at end 2017, AMK was working with almost 700,000 clients through its loan, deposits and micro-insurance products.
Meanwhile, AMZ finished 2017 with very strong results, the best in its short history so far.
It finished the year with a 70% growth in portfolio while achieving a 20% reduction in Operating Cost levels. As a result, its topline income increased by 41% even as its effective lending rates came down by over 10%. PAR30 remained impeccable at 0.5%, and profitability was strong at a RoE of around 20% for the year. During the year AMZ also expanded operations and opened two new branches, diversified its loan book by introducing small-group and MSME loans in addition to Village Bank (large group) loans, and ventured into mobile money agency business by partnering with Airtel, MTN and Zoona. Towards the end of the year it also developed two micro-insurance products in partnership with Insurance companies, for weather-index, health and funeral cover. These products are set to be tested during 2018.
At the end of 2017, AMZ was working with 17,000 clients across 6 branches and with a staff strength of 71, of which half were Client Officers. It has also built partnerships in and outside the country with Grameen Credit-Agricole, Oikocredit, LendAHand, Financial Sector Deepening Zambia and Global Partnerships.
AMIL continued its progress towards growth and viability and is set to record its second successive year of financial viability, after breaking even in the previous year. While its financial year ends in March, the estimated loan book for its year end is over USD4.5 million, with a healthy position on portfolio quality and profitability. Like other Agora MFIs, AMIL has also branched out into mobile payment services as a super-agent and has further consolidated its geographical reach in Mumbai with operations run from 11 branches. We expect that AMIL will end its financial year with approximately 20,000 clients in Mumbai.