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Equity Bank's business model has attracted both local and international recognition. On many occasions the Bank has been invited to various international forums and bodies to share on its successes. Equity has also become a hub of other institutions worldwide keen on learning and exchanging insights on the Equity model of extending financial services to the low income segment and the un-banked population.

A number of international luminaries have paid a courtesy call on Equity Bank on their mission to study poverty reduction initiatives in Africa. Among the dignitaries who have visited us are UN Advisor HRH Princess Maxima of Netherlands, former UN First Lady Nane Annan, CGAP President Elizabeth LittleField, WWB President Nancy Barry and Melinda French Gates.                                                               


Chairman of the Year Award 2013

Peter Munga

November 2013: Equity Bank Group Chairman Peter Munga was named Chairman of the Year during the 4th edition of the annual Capital Markets Awards. Munga was celebrated for laying the vision that became Equity Bank and promoting inclusivity in the financial sector.

2013 Distinguished Tax Payer


November 2013: Equity Bank was recognized amongstKenya’s Top Tax Payers 2013 by Kenya Revenue Authority: 2013 Distinguished Tax Payer, Top Ten Category. The Bank is committed to continue upholding the highest standards of corporate governance and to make a contribution in building the nation.

African Business Leader of the Year

October 2013: Dr. James Mwangi was awarded the African Business Leader of the Year by Africa Investor. Dr. Mwangi has joined a Pan African initiative that promotes private sector participation in infrastructure and intra-African investment. The Pan African initiative brings together over 150 of the continent's most influential business and government leaders. The award is given to the business leader whose organization is well-run with financial results increasing year on year, and embracing innovation, and model corporate citizen

Think Business Banking Awards 2013


April 2013: Equity Bank was voted Best Bank in Kenya 2013 during the 8th edition of the Think Business Banking Awards. The Bank also bagged the Best Bank in Kenya Tier 1 (banks with an asset base exceeding Ksh 150 billion) and Bank with Lowest Charges during the annual awards. The Banking Awards recognize and reward best practices in the banking industry based on various parameters including customer service, innovation and reach.

Best Bank in Kenya in terms of Customer Deposits

April 2013: Equity Bank was voted the best bank in Kenya in terms of customer deposits amongst banks with a deposit base of over Ksh 75 billion from a survey conducted by accounting and consulting firm RSM Ashvir. The banks were ranked based on various assessment faculties which included customer experience, branch network, social impact, risk management and management and governance for the year ended 31st December 2012.

Forbes Africa Person of the Year 2012


November 2012: Dr. James Mwangi was named the 'Forbes Africa Person of the Year 2012' at the prestigious Porsche Centre in Victoria Island in Lagos, Nigeria. Dr. Mwangi won the award ahead of five finalists who included Aliko Dangote, Founder and President, Dangote Group and Joyce Banda the President of Malawi. "The Person of The Year award recognizes the individual that has made a significant impact in business through economic growth by creating employment and spearheading innovation in the continent, having the most influence on the events of the year gone by", said the Managing Director of the ABN Group, Roberta Naidoo. In his acceptance speech Dr. James Mwangi said: "All Africans should brace up and take up the challenge of improving Africa as our generation could go into history as those that changed the African continent for good." Dr. Mwangi was cited for turning around a liquidated micro-finance institution into one of the largest and profitable commercial banks in Africa, and driving the Bank's aim to transform the lives and livelihoods of people socially and economically.

East Africa Business Leader 2012

September 2012: Equity Bank CEO Dr James Mwangi was awarded the East African Business Leader by CNBC Africa in South Africa. The Award recognizes African business leaders who have made a qualitative and quantitative difference to the companies, industries and communities that they serve. On receiving the award, Dr Mwangi said, "I am honoured to receive this award... This award represents all Africans who are working hard to improve their livelihoods and those of their communities."

Ernst & Young World Entrepreneur of the Year

ernest young

June, 2012: Equity Bank CEO and Managing Director Dr. James Mwangi was named 2012 Ernst & Young World Entrepreneur of the Year at a ceremony held in Monte Carlo, Monaco. Dr Mwangi was picked from among the 59 country finalists shortlisted for the title across 51 countries. With the win, Dr. Mwangi became the first business leader from Sub Saharan Africa to win this prestigious award. He was also among the finalists who were inducted to the Entrepreneur Of The Year Hall of Fame and the World Entrepreneurship Academy. "Over the past 26 years, entrepreneurs have done more than any other group to stimulate innovation, job creation and prosperity during both periods of growth and in challenging economic conditions. James epitomizes the vision and determination that set entrepreneurs apart and is very worthy of the title Ernst & Young World Entrepreneur Of The Year 2012." said Jim Turley, Global Chairman and CEO of Ernst & Young.

Best Managed Company in Africa award


June 2012: Equity Bank was awarded Best Managed Company in Africa award by Euromoney magazine. the voice of international capital markets, announced its results of 'Best Managed Companies in Africa' based on a survey of market analysts at leading banks and research institutes in Africa. The Bank won the award on a strong brand pull, regional footprint and corporate governance. "We are honoured to receive this award from Euromoney as it validates our efforts to transform the lives and livelihoods of our people socially and economically by availing modern and inclusive financial services," said Equity Bank CEO Dr James Mwangi. "Our strong and stable balance sheet having already earned us the 'Best Bank in Kenya' further underscores the rationale behind this global award. We are proud to be recognized and remain committed to strengthening our business model."

Most Innovative Bank in Africa Award


June 2012: Equity Bank was awarded the Most Innovative Bank in Africa Award at the African Bankers Awards held in Arusha. The annual awards reward outstanding talent and achievement in Africa's financial sector. Equity Bank staved off competition from three other nominees in the category including Nigeria's Access Bank and FirstBank. The African Banker Awards are organized by African Banker magazine, IC Events and Business in Africa Events to celebrate excellence and best practices in African banking and finance.

Life Achievement Award


Equity Bank CEO Dr James Mwangi was honoured with the Life Achievement Award at the Banking Awards for his contribution to the banking industry; more so for his role and efforts in financial inclusion for previously unbanked citizenry.

Best Bank in Kenya - April 2012


Equity Bank was named Best Bank in Kenya at the Banking Awards 2012, while also receiving the Best Bank (tier 1) and the Best Bank in Microfinance awards at the same event.

Best Initiative in Support of SMEs and the Millennium Development Goals - 2011

achievement2 Equity Bank was named by Africa Investor as the 2011 winner of the Best Initiative in Support of SMEs and the Millennium Development Goals

Equity Bank is recognized a New Sustainability Champion


September 2011... Equity Bank Group has been listed as one of the 16 global emerging Markets New Sustainability Champions by a World Economic Forum Report in 2011. Titled: Redefining the Future of Growth: The New Sustainability Champions, the World Economic Forum lists Equity Bank as the only financial service provider in the Emerging markets covering India, Brazil, Egypt, South Africa, China, Philippines and Costa Rica which meets the threshold of sustainability based on a criteria covering, innovation, growth and corporate sustainability.

Prepared in conjunction with The Boston Consulting Group (BCG), The World Economic Forum report highlights innovative business practices from companies originating and operating in global emerging markets.
"The New Sustainability Champions are more than just symbols. Their overall performance matters because emerging markets in total are set to contribute more than three-quarters of global growth by 2025 - and because those markets will likely feel resource scarcity most," said Knut Haanaes, Partner and Managing Director, Boston Consulting Group, Norway.

African Banker of the Year - 2011


September 2011... Equity Bank Chief Executive Officer Dr. James Mwangi has been named the African Banker of the Year for the second year running at the 2011 African Banker Awards in Washington D.C.

Speaking after receiving the accolade, Dr. Mwangi pledged to further step up his efforts to ensure financial inclusivity for the unbanked masses as his tribute for the coveted award.
"As a career banker, this award has helped me to renew my personal vow to facilitate social and economic transformation through innovative banking practices," Dr. Mwangi explained.

EBL lauded at Clinton Global Initiative


Washington, D.C. 28th September . . . Equity Bank has been lauded for extending financial services to the informal sector in a model singled out by leaders attending the annual Clinton Global Initiative (CGI) meeting.

Panelists and speakers attending the 2011 CGI Mega Cities, Mega Challenges session noted that Equity Bank’s model which is geared at ensuring financial inclusivity for the unbanked has revolutionized banking in Kenya.
Dr Mwangi expounded on the Bank’s efforts to avail financial services through technology and innovation. “ Equity has opened over 2,500 agents throughout the country to complement our mobile banking solutions which include M-kesho, Orange Money and Eazzy 247 which makes banking accessible and convenient for a range of financial services”, he said.

African Banker of the Year - 2010


Dr James Mwangi MD and CEO of Kenya's Equity Bank has been voted as the African Banker of the year at the 2010 African Banker Awards. The winners were announced at a gala dinner and awards ceremony at the Willard Intercontinental Hotel in Washington, DC on Friday, 8 October 2010.

He was cited for revolutionising Kenya's banking industry, pioneering the first mobile banking technology in the world to reach out to the unbanked, and for championing the empowerment of ordinary people through inclusive finance.

January 26 2010...CEO Top 50 Emerging Market Business Leaders - 2010

The Financial Times of London named Equity Bank’s CEO Dr James Mwangi as one of the top 50 emerging market business leaders. Mr Mwangi was named alongside Mr Atul Shah, Kenya's Nakumatt Holdings MD, with other business leaders from the BRIC countries – Brazil, Russia, India and China – and other emerging market economies.

The Chief Executive was named as one among 50 emerging market business leaders by the Financial Times in a survey titled as: 50 emerging markets business leaders.
Dr Mwangi has revolutionized banking in Kenya by his innovative approach to banking by bringing banking services close to the unbanked majority in the country.
Under Mr. Mwangi’s stewardship, the company has undergone a dramatic transformation from a loss making microfinance lender to a fully fledged and publicly listed commercial bank with operations in Kenya, Uganda and Sudan. Leading business schools such as Stanford, Columbia and Lagos have made Equity Bank business model a case study.
“This recognition by one of the most influential publications in the world serves to further validate the Bank’s business model. It is a great honor, not just to me personally but to our over 4 million customers who have all along supported this indigenous institution through the years,” Dr Mwangi said.
Dr Mwangi said the success of Equity Bank was underpinned by its focus on the low income earners, historically excluded from the financial system. The Financial Times praised Dr Mwangi for transforming the lives of many people in Kenya including house helps and low income earners who have been able to borrow as little as Sh500 from the bank.

October 2009… Microfinance Bank of the Year 2009


For the second year running, Equity Bank has been named the Micro Finance Bank of the Year in Africa during the annual African Bankers Awards ceremony held in Istanbul, Turkey. Equity won the award in a category contested by Accion of Nigeria, Blue Financial Services of South Africa and UBA Nigeria.

Equity Bank was named the Micro Finance Bank of the Year in Africa “for assisting local communities and aspiring entrepreneurs to raise finance, ultimately contributing to their growth and development.
While receiving the award, Equity Bank Director for Operations and customer service, Gerald Warui noted that the award demonstrates the resilience of the microfinance sector in Africa in reducing poverty and accelerate the attainment of the Millennium Development Goals.
He said; “I wish to thank the more than 4.1 million members of Equity Bank for having stood with us because it is their support that has enabled the Bank to be rewarded; and together we will continue to transform lives and livelihoods socially and economically in line with our vision.”
The African Banker Awards 2009 took into account the continent's successes in banking rewarding among other things, achievements, record earnings, innovative practices, and commitment to corporate social responsibility and gender equality.

September 2009... Africa Investor Series Awards 2009

dr james receiving the award.jpg

It was a double win at the Africa Investor Index Series Awards 2009 held at the New York Stock Exchange. Equity Bank was named the best performing company in Africa while the Bank’s CEO, Dr James Mwangi was named Africa’s CEO of the year, in the Africa 100 CEO category Index.

The Pan-African Awards ceremony was attended by over 200 senior executives from across Africa and the world. Equity emerged top in the Ai 100 company category, with the Press Corporation of Malawi and Namibian Breweries taking up the second and third positions respectively.
The African Investor Index Awards recognise and reward Africa’s institutional investors, stock exchanges, best performing listed companies, stockbrokers and capital market regulators. Equity Bank was cited for its sterling “financial performance reflected by the strong growth in revenue and profitability, and underpinned by a strong balance sheet”.
Dr Mwangi was named the top CEO in Africa for his “leadership, which had transformed Equity Bank from a technically insolvent building society to a fully fledged publicly listed commercial bank with over 3.6 million account holders accounting for 51% of all bank accounts in Kenya.”

September 2009... Equity Chairman Awarded Global Prize in Agriculture

achievement chairman

Equity Bank’s Chairman Mr. Peter Munga received the 2009 Yara prize at a ceremony organized by the Yara Foundation in Oslo, Norway.

Equity Bank’s Chairman Mr. Peter Munga received the 2009 Yara prize at a ceremony organized by the Yara Foundation in Oslo, Norway. Mr Munga received the Award for his work in transforming the lives and fortunes of thousands of small scale farmers in Africa and empowering them to be creators and generators of employment.
He dedicated his prize money of US$100,000 (approximately KSh 8 million) to mentoring, inspiring and enabling small scale farmers to achieve a green revolution in Africa. “The Yara prize demonstrates that small scale farmers need not only capital, but also require a mind shift to revolutionize agriculture into a viable and sustainable enterprise,” he said while receiving the award.

July 2009... The African Business Award


Equity Bank was named the African Business of the Year 2009 at the Commonwealth Business Council & Africa Business awards held in London. The award recognizes businesses which returned outstanding returns and growth rates coupled with innovative working techniques, and development of staff and the community it operates in.

According to Omar Ben Yedder, Associate Group Publisher of African Business magazine, the organizer of the event, the Citation for Equity’s win reads: The Winner is a company which has shown remarkable courage and leadership, in making a viable solution of reaching out to the Bottom of the Pyramid. It has paved the way for many businesses to follow suit creating a model which is profitable, sustainable and which is now being used as a case study by the leading business schools around the world.

Upon receiving the award, CEO Dr. Mwangi said; “This award strengthens our resolve to continue focusing on making banking accessible and affordable to majority of our African people who have been excluded from the financial system. Africa continues to lag behind because majority of its people do not have access to finance. We are delighted but also humbled by this recognition. Africa has solutions to the challenges it faces.”

May 2009... Most Sustainable Bank of the Year

suistanaible bank.jpg

Equity Bank has been named as the Emerging Markets Most Sustainable Bank of the Year in Africa and Middle East by the  Financial Times and the International Finance Corporation – a member of the World Bank Group

Equity emerged the top bank in the 2009 FT Sustainable Banking Awards in the Emerging Markets Category in Africa and the Middle East beating Nedbank from South Africa and Access Bank of Nigeria, also contenders in this category. Triodos Bank of the Netherlands was named as Sustainable Bank of the Year and Itau Unibanco of Brazil took the overall Emerging Markets prize.

These awards reward financial institutions that show leadership and innovation. Now in their fourth year, they recognise banks and other financial institutions that have shown leadership and innovation in integrating social, environmental and corporate governance considerations into their operations. The nominees were selected from among 165 entries from 117 institutions across 42 countries.
“This is yet another validation of Equity Bank’s unique business model as a sustainable approach in empowering the majority of low income earners through inclusive financial intermediation that gives them opportunities to unlock their economic potential.” said Dr James Mwangi, the CEO of Equity Bank.

April 2009… Best Bank in Kenya 2008/2009


For the second year running, Equity has been named the best bank in the Kenya Banking awards.
Equity bank was named the bank of the year at the 2009 Banking Awards ceremony. The awards recognize the best financial institutions in Kenya.

The annual awards were launched in 2006 by Think Business Limited. The aim of these awards is to encourage prudence and stability in the banking sector by recognising, awarding and celebrating exemplary performers and successes of the sector, therefore encouraging competition. Equity was also named the best bank in micro finance, best bank in technology use, 3rd best bank in retail banking and among the fastest growing banks in the country, 5 awards in total. “I would like to dedicate these awards to our customers who have shown unwavering faith and confidence in Equity Bank over the years.  We at the Bank will continue implementing our unique business model that aims to reach out to thousands of Kenyans who otherwise would have been locked out of mainstream banking”, said Equity Bank CEO Dr James Mwangi during the awards gala dinner in Nairobi.

March 2009… AI Financial Reporting Award

Equity Bank became the first African financial institution to win the inaugural Africa Investor Financial Reporting Award for its leadership and efforts in financial reporting.

The Award was presented at a colorful ceremony held at the Paris Stock Exchange and organized by African Investor in association with the New York Stock Exchange. Among those shortlisted for the award were First Bank of Nigeria Plc, Oceanic Bank International Plc of Nigeria, The Mauritius Commercial Bank Ltd of Mauritius, EFG Hermes of Egypt, Attijariwafa Bank of Morocco , Ecobank Transnational Inc(ETI) of Togo and Standard Bank of South Africa and Equity Bank. The Ai Financial Reporting Awards are the only African Awards that recognize the crucial importance professional financial reporting has in informing investors and decision makers contemplating investments in Africa.
Speaking after receiving the award, Equity Bank CEO, Dr. James Mwangi said “the recognition was as a result of the Bank’s financial transparency & disclosure, professional ethics and corporate governance”.  

Best Overall Bank... 2009 & 2008 Inter Banks sports Champions

Equity Bank emerged the best overall in inter-bank sports in Kenya in 2008/9. The victory was historic, taking the title from the defending champions of 24 years.

The sports competition brings together all financial institutions in Kenya in a variety of sporting games. Equity first participated in the inter-bank games in 2005 and has improved in performance, moving from 3rd Runners up in 2007 to take the championship in 2008 and retain in 2009.


Banking Awards 2008... Best Bank in Kenya

Equity Bank was voted the Best Bank in Kenya during the 2008 Renaissance Capital Awards in a survey benchmarked against a series of 12 parameters, chief of which included asset quality, capital adequacy, earnings and liquidity. The indicators are the standard measures internationally used by rating agencies to grade banks. The ratings included 41 commercial banks and two non-bank financial institutions. “This achievement goes to all Equity Bank customers, and all Kenyans who have supported, and shown strong faith in the bank since inception as an indigenous institution. They have made the bank what it is today, and we do not take the support for granted,” – DR James Mwangi, CEO Equity Bank.

Best performing Ai 100 company in Africa 2008


The New York Stock Exchange recognized Equity Bank for its role in business and investment during the African (Ai) Investor Awards held in New York. Equity Bank was named the Best Performing Ai 100 Company.  The Ai 100 awards recognize the best performing public listed company in Africa. Judges look out for market capitalization, value of shares traded as a proportion of market capitalization, and financial performance in terms of size and the ability of the company to create value for investors.

The Africa investor Awards are unique Pan-African business and investment awards that recognise and reward the achievemements of the private sector across wide-ranging sectors and disciplines. These awards attract the market leaders from across the continent and salute their achievements.

Photo: Company Secretary and Director of Corporate Strategy, Mrs Mary Wangari Wamae (R) with the trophy won by Equity Bank at the Ai awards in New York. Next to her is Mr Less Baillie of Safaricom Investor Relations

African Banker Awards 2008... Microfinance Bank of they year

Equity was named the Best Microfinance bank in Africa during the annual African Banker Awards ceremony held in Washington DC, USA. According to the organizers, the award went to the micro finance lender who had contributed most to reduce poverty in Africa. The awards reward among other things achievements, record earnings, innovative practices and their commitment to corporate social responsibility and gender equality. They are designed to recognise the reforms, rapid modernization, consolidation, integration and expansion of the African Banking sector.
Paul Waithaka receiving the award for the Microfinance Bank of the year for Equity Bank - Kenya

Agriculture and ASK shows


The bank has introduced new innovative products aimed at supporting the agricultural sector in Kenya . Among these products is Kilimo Biashara, Mifugo Biashara, Uvuvi Biashara, Warehouse receipting and many others. Equity has also signed strategic partnerships with milk processing companies, tea factories, coffee factories and horticultural companies. The partnerships are aimed at deepening farmers access to financial services, and commercializing agriculture.

Other than participating in ASK shows, Equity Bank also sponsors farmers field days where it awards outstanding farmers in various categories. This motivates them to enhance our country’s food security.

Photo: H. E. Hon. President Mwai Kibaki hands over the best financial institution award trophy to CEO, Dr James Mwangi at the 2008 Nairobi International Trade Fair (ASK Show)

Best Bank in Kenya (2007-8).... Euromoney Awards for Excellence

July 2008: For the second year running, Equity Bank has been voted the best bank in Kenya during this year’s Euromoney Awards for Excellence. Euromoney, the world's most prestigious financial publications. The Euromoney Awards for Excellence are to the financial services industry what the Oscars are to film.

“Last year’s award went to Equity Bank due to its efforts to encourage the unbanked to get involved with the banking sector. More than 2.5 million Kenyans bank with Equity which is nearly half of all the country’s bank accounts."Read More  

Equity Bank Enters Uganda

April 2008: Equity Bank and Uganda Microfinance Limited (UML) signed a conditional agreement  to take up 100 % of the bank’s share capital.UML is the leading Microfinance institution in Uganda. Equity Bank acquired the microfinance company at a price of Kshs. 1.66 Billion.  Read More...

Banking Awards



December 2007: Just when we were getting to the end of the year, we again were recognized in Kenya’s Banking Awards, conducted by Think Business, a Kenyan Magazine that rates banks.

The bank got overall 6 awards, three among them being number one awards. We were also rated as Kenya’s overall second best bank. Equity’s Chief Executive dedicated the awards to the bank’s staff and 1.8m customers, citing their unwavering support.

“The firms that stood out from the crowd were those that exhibited the ability to innovate, react at speed and make best use of the inherent strengths of their organization.” - Euromoney, 2007.Photo: Equity Bank CEO, (in dark suit) together with senior officials of the bank pose for a group photo after the Bank Awards. Read more


Awards Won

MicroCapital Award

September '07 A month after winning the Euromoney 2007 Awards for Excellence, Equity Bank was recognized by a leading news and research entity on microfinance, MicroCapital.

Equity emerged as the Best Microfinance institution (MFI) in Africa and the 3rd best in the world in an analysis conducted by MicroCapital. We were ranked third behind Bangladeshi's ASA bank and Compatmos of Mexico, respectively. A comprehensive research by MicroCapital ranked Kenya's fastest growing as the third best worlwide.

The research was based on the bank's return, number of borrowers and size of portfolio, growth and expense ratio. It was restricted to nine leading microfinance institutions around the globe to ensure clear and comparable parameters are laid out. The draw includes Asian countries; Bangladesh, India, Cambodia and Mongolia; Kenya and Morocco from Africa; and Mexico, Peru and Bolivia from the America.

MicroCapital is a news and research initiative on international microfinance investment housed under Prisma MicroFinance, a microfinance institution registered as U.S. based international holding company offering financial services in Latin America. It seeks to provide honest, candid information on microfinance as an emerging investment class.

  • Best Bank in Microfinance
  • Best Bank in Retail banking
  • Fastest growing bank
  • 1st runners up-  Overall Best Bank in Kenya
  • 1st runners up - Best Bank in Product innovation
  • 2nd runners up -Best bank in SME Banking.


Equity, Kenya’s fastest growing bank, received recognition for excellence in banking and financial services from

“Last year’s award went to Equity Bank due to its efforts to encourage the unbanked to get involved with the banking sector. More than 2.5 million Kenyans bank with Equity which is nearly half of all the country’s bank accounts."

EuroMoney Awards 2007

August ’07:
 Once again, Equity Bank's unique business model was recognized when we got voted the Best Bank in Kenya in the Euromoney Awards, 2007. The Euromoney awards for Excellence are the most respected awards in the financial services industry. They are to the financial institutions what the Oscars are to film”, notes part of the Euromoney citation. Equity Bank was picked as Best Bank in Kenya on grounds of its achievements in lending to the retail sector and reaching out to the ‘unbanked’, pioneering efforts which bigger banks are now trying to keep up with, said  Euromoney.

“The firms that stood out from the crowd were those that exhibited the ability to innovate, react at speed and make best use of the inherent strengths of their organization.” - Euromoney, 2007. Read more

Equity CEO awarded doctorate

July '07 Equity Bank’s Chief Executive Officer (CEO), Dr. James Mwangi was awarded an Honorary Doctorate in Business Administration by the Kenya Methodist University (Kemu).  Kemu cited his visionary leadership that transformed Equity Bank from a technically insolvent institution to become one of the leading banks in Kenya, which has made banking affordable and accessible to ordinary Kenyans. He holds a Doctorate in Humane Letters from Kenyatta University (2007) and Entreprenuership from JKUAT University (2008) Photo; Rev. Dr. Kanyaru, Chancellor Kemu, confers the doctorate to Dr. Mwangi (kneeling)

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