In Kenya, Saccos have always been considered as a major avenue for promoting savings and access to credit services.
Sacco membership in Kenya stands at over 10 million members indicating the indelible contribution the sub-sector has been making towards achieving financial inclusion.
Many Saccos appear to have ridden the pandemic wave and came out strong in 2022. This can be seen in recent dividend payout announcements.
Under Kenya Vision 2030, Saccos are recognised as key players when it comes to mobilising finances as well as boosting access to financial services.
On top of increasing access to credit and encouraging a culture of consistent savings amongst members, Saccos have a history of offering impressive dividend payouts.
As the period of economic uncertainty eased out in 2021, Saccos experienced better profitability and consequently declared better dividends for the period ended December 2021 as compared to the previous year.
Below is a snapshot of some of the dividends declared by some of Kenya’s top Saccos. We also include some of the terms, minimum share capital, and the interest on deposits declared in the period.
In mid-January 2022, the board of Directors at Solutions Sacco announced a dividend payout to its members (year 2021) at a rate of 18%. Each member’s savings also earned a 13% interest
A Sacco pools member savings and lends them out or invests in instruments such as shares, treasury bills, and bonds as authorised.
There are 175 Deposit-Taking Saccos in Kenya regulated by the Sacco Societies Regulatory Authority (SASRA). They have a combined asset value of more than Ksh393 billion.
Additionally, there are over 3,500 Non-Deposit-Taking Saccos in Kenya with an estimated membership of over 1.5 million
Many Saccos in Kenya were formed with restricted membership to industry or sector of working. For example Stima Sacco - for power generation and distribution sector employees, Magereza Sacco - formed by prison services employees.
However, many have opened membership to other members of the public. One must first buy shares to become a member. Each Sacco has a minimum share capital.
The best Sacco for you is the one whose products and services match your needs. If you are going to borrow a Sacco loan, the ease of getting guarantors to secure your loan is an important consideration.
Visit the SASRA website for the updated list of registered Saccos in Kenya.
You want to have insurance for your money. It is, therefore, crucial to find a reliable Sacco that’s registered, insured, and regulated.
One should take a keen interest in the interest rate on loans. Are you comfortable with it? Saccos pay annual dividends to their members. It is therefore important to compare different Saccos for proper evaluation. Luckily, most Saccos publish their rates on their websites, making it easy for one to carry out detailed research.
2021 was a good year too for the banking sector as many players bounced back to profitability as Covid-19 restrictions were gradually lifted. Below is a snapshot of dividends declared by banks and other companies listed at the Nairobi Securities Exchange (NSE).
Absa Bank Kenya PLC: Final dividend of Ksh.1.10 announced on March 15, 2022; Book closure (April 25, 2022); Payment (May 26, 2022).
Standard Chartered Bank Kenya: Final dividend of Ksh.14.00 announced on March 14, 2022; Book closure (April 27, 2022); Payment (May 25, 2022).
Stanbic Holdings PLC: Final dividend of Ksh.7.30 announced on March 3, 2022; Book closure (May 20, 2022); Payment (Subject to Approval).
Safaricom PLC: Interim dividend of Ksh.0.64 announced on February 25, 2022; Book closure (March 17, 2022); Payment (March 31, 2022).
BAT Kenya PLC: Final dividend of Ksh.50.00 announced on February 18, 2022; Book closure (April 22, 2022); Payment (May 24, 2022).
East African Breweries PLC: Interim dividend of Ksh.3.75 announced on January 28, 2022; Book closure (February 28, 2022); Payment (April 27, 2022).
Sasini PLC: First and Final dividend of Ksh.0.50 announced on January 11, 2022; Book closure February 22, 2022; Payment (March 15, 2022).
Car & General (K) LTD: First and Final dividend of Ksh.3.20 announced on January 6, 2022; Book closure February 25, 2022; Payment (March 24, 2022).
Car & General (K) LTD: Bonus of Ksh. 1:1 announced on January 6, 2022; Book closure March 24, 2022; Crediting (April 8, 2022).
On March 17, 2022, KCB revealed that it had tripled its dividend payout to Ksh9.64 billion for the year ended December 2021, while retaining Ksh24.5 billion to finance new acquisitions and grow its business in Rwanda and Kenya.
A day later (March 18, 2022) Co-operative Bank posted a 53% jump in full-year profit to December 2021 to Ksh16.5b from Ksh10.8b in 2020 on improved income; The Board approved Ksh1 per share as the final dividend payment.
When Saccos were initially launched in Kenya, they were mainly seen as a means to save and access loans. However, these groups have since evolved and diversified their portfolios to include investment opportunities, housing solutions, agricultural facilities and so much more.
This could explain why at least 14 million Kenyans were registered as Sacco members in 2017.
Knowing which Sacco to join is heavily dependent on a combination of some of the benefits mentioned earlier such as interest rate on savings, dividend payout track record, and investment opportunities.