The financial indicators for Banque Misr's performance indicated stability and significant growth.This year also witnessed steady growth in the bank's business size, which was reflected on the performance of its main activities and results during fiscal year 2015/2016. This was evidenced by the financial position increasing to over EGP 430 billion by the end of FY 2015/2016, compared to EGP 331 billion the previous year, marking a growth rate of approximately 30%. Moreover, customers' deposits registered a growth of approximately EGP 51 billion, amounting to over EGP 341 billion, compared to EGP 290 billion at the end of FY 2014/2015, marking a 15% growth. These numbers were registered despite the major challenges that struck Egypt's banking sector as a whole throughout 2016.
The bank's retail portfolio registered a total of EGP 14.5 billion at the end of FY 2015/2016, compared to EGP 9.5 billion the previous year, marking a EGP 5 billion increase, i.e. a 53% growth. Meanwhile, the number of issued cards registered a total of 4.9 million cards, the majority of which function using a Smart Chip, placing Banque Misr in second place in terms of the number of electronic payment cards in Egypt. Meanwhile, the bank came in first place for collections from merchant's transactions based on the number of merchants' locations registered with the bank, which recorded 13,901 locations across the country. Additionally, the size of e-commerce transactions through bank-contracted merchants through points of sales (POS) amounted to EGP 6 billion annually. The bank provides the most up-to-date POS devices in those locations, in accordance with PCI DSS standards, in compliance with the requirements of international organizations.
Furthermore, Banque Misr continues to occupy the first place, for the 11th consecutive year, among Egyptian banks in terms of the mechanization of payrolls since 2005. The bank has acquired a 48% share of the market in this regard, registering 2.3 million payroll cards for the 1,300 government entities contracted with the bank.
Out of its commitment to meeting all its customers' requirements, the bank has provided a number of different solutions for the payroll mechanization process, targeting both the public and private sectors, through offering a number of products for transferring salaries, such as payroll cards and accounts. A total of 680 companies have contracted with the bank, with a total of 430,000 payroll cards, as well as 51,000 payroll accounts. Furthermore, the total value of salaries dispensed to both the public and private sector recorded over EGP 40 billion annually, transferred through the bank.
Further, in continuation of the bank's policy to spread its branches across the country, it recently opened a number of new branches, making Banque Misr the owner of the largest network of branches in Egypt, with more than 575 branches spread across all parts of the nation. This makes it the most widespread bank in Africa and the Middle East, in addition to its regional and international presence through branches in the UAE, Lebanon, Paris, and Frankfurt. This is in addition to its wide network of correspondent banks, covering every country in the world. Moreover, the bank has an advanced network of approximately 1,715 ATMs, offering a number of services including withdrawal, deposit, currency exchange, bill payment, and donations, in addition to offering cash transfers with or without credit cards. The ATM machines are distributed in all areas nationwide, and are equipped with the latest technologies.
Banque Misr further provides funding for micro-, small-, and medium-sized projects (MSMEs) through its branches nationwide, to various different industrial, agricultural, and service sectors. The total authorized limit of the financing portfolio for small- and medium-sized projects registered EGP 8.5 billion in June 2016, compared to 5.3 billion the previous year, marking a 60% growth. This was achieved through the continuous support of MSMEs. The bank is further committed to meeting the requirements of all segments of society, which contributes to promoting development through combatting unemployment, and aiding the development of society. The bank participated with the Ministry of Local Development in the "Mashrouak" (Your Project) program, aiming to provide funding for micro and small projects through the one-window investment system in the 290 local units spread nationwide, in which Banque Misr recorded an 88% penetration rate in 254 units as of 30/06/2016. The bank provided loands worth EGP 637 million to 20,162 micro and small projects within the same timeframe.
Banque Misr has been among the largest banks pioneering in providing funding to projects in various sectors. In light of its efforts in the previous period, the bank came at the forefront of Bloomberg's syndicated loans league table in Africa for the first half of 2016, surpassing the Standard Chartered Bank, which occupied second place. This comes in continuation of Banque Misr's dominance of this ranking since the beginning of 2015, after it had been dominated by European banks over the previous four years. With this ranking, Banque Misr has continued to record distinguished results in arranging and marketing syndicated loans and financing projects.
Banque Misr also topped the 20 best Egyptian banks in arranging syndicated loans and financing projects in the Middle East and North Africa (MENA) region, according to Bloomberg's H1 2016 rankings.
Banque Misr was moreover awarded the Best Syndicated Loan House in Africa for 2015 by EMEA Finance, one of the world's leading banking and finance institutions, during its annual award ceremony held in London. The award reflects the size of the bank's success in arranging and marketing 20 different syndicate loans throughout 2015, at a total value of approximately EGP 49.5 billion.
Further, in the framework of Banque Misr's commitment and strategy to provide financing for projects, particularly infrastructure projects, one of the syndicated loans that the bank participated in, along with a number of the most distinguished banks in the sector, was awarded the prize for Best Syndicated Loan in Africa by EMEA Finance.
Throughout FY 2015/2016, the bank was able to arrange, fund, and participate in a number of financing operations, registered a total value of EGP 72.5 billion, distributed across a number of sectors, including electricity, cement, real estate investment, petrol, and others. Banque Misr's guaranteed coverage rate in these operations was valued at EGP 18.4 billion, of which the bank retained a final share of EGP 16.8 billion.
In light of the intensified marketing schemes the bank has undertaken to attract clients and financing operations, as well as its commitment to achieving its strategic development aims, the bank is currently seeking to undertake a number of large-scale targeted financing operations. A number of projects are currently being studied, including those in the subcontracting, maritime transport, electricity, energy, and fertilizer sectors, among others, at a total value of EGP 33.2 billion. The expected guaranteed coverage to be provided by Banque Misr for these projects is approximately EGP 10.8 billion, affirming its role as one of the leading banks in Egypt's banking sector.
As for retail banking activity in the Islamic banking sector, the number of Islamic banking branches of Banque Misr registered 36 branches nationwide by June 2016. Furthermore, the Islamic banking credit portfolio increased to EGP 4 billion in FY 2015/2016, compared to EGP 3.1 billion in the previous year. Moreover, in March 2016, it received the IJGlobal Award for Metals and Mining in the MENA region for participating with an EGP 300 million share in an Islamic segment of a Mudaraba contract supplementing the primary facilitation contract. This was provided to fund the establishment of a factory for producing steel and rebar in Ain Sokhna with working capital at a total investment cost of EGP 2.83 billion. This was considered the first transaction in Banque Misr's Islamic Banking sector conducted through participation with traditional banks (including the Commercial International Bank, AlexBank, Bank Audi, Al-Ahli United Bank, Emirates NBD, and Egyptian Gulf Bank). Additionally, Banque Misr acquired the role of lead arranger and capital account bank.
Further, Banque Misr expanded its role in the syndicated loans sector through partnerships with other banks, whereby it participated in financing the Egyptian General Petroleum Corporation (EGPC), providing a $50 million share of a total of $130 million in financing.
Furthermore, in terms of retail banking in the Islamic banking sector, Banque Misr's Islamic banking branches (Kenana) provide all the latest banking services, such as issuing all kinds of cards, in addition to a diverse series of up-to-date products to serve the customers of these branches. Among these are the various Murabaha products, including the Hajj and Umra Murabaha to allow customers to perform pilgrimage rites by paying in instalments, as well as Durable Goods Murabaha, allowing the purchase of durable goods in instalments, in addition to Touristic Trips Murabaha, allowing the payments of trips over instalments, and Car Murabaha and Educational Murabaha, to fund tuition fees and requirements.
Additionally, the banking Takaful service was offered through the bank's Islamic branches, in partnership with the Egyptian Takaful Company. Additionally, in the MSMEs sector, and amid the framework of the Central Bank of Egypt's MSMEs financing initiative, a number of financing programs were offered to finance MSMEs, in accordance with different customers' needs. This is addition to the bank's micro-financing program.
Furthermore, culminating its efforts in the field of investment and investment funds, Banque Misr was named by Global Finance magazine as the Best Provider of Short-term Investments/Money Market Funds in the Middle East for 2016, making this the eighth time for the bank to receive this award. Global Finance, headquartered in New York, is considered one of the most recognized financial magazine internationally. It relies on an array of international banking standards in awarding its prizes, in addition to the counsel of a distinguished group of international analysts and bankers.
This award is moreover granted to the best bank in the Middle East, and the most distinguished in terms of profitability, quality of customer services, market share, competitive pricing compared to other banks in the market, and the use of the latest banking techniques. In continuation of its success, Banque Misr was awarded the Best Treasury and Cash Management Provider in Africa in 2009 and 2010, and in the Middle East in 2008, 2012, 2013, and 2014, in addition to being selected as the Best Provider of Short-term Investments/Money Market Funds in the Middle East in 2015 and 2016.
Stemming from the bank's conviction in the importance of corporate social responsibility, the bank was awarded the prize for Social Responsibility by the Arab Social Responsibility Organization, in recognition of its achievements in this field. Moreover, the bank continues to support the social environment through effective involvement, whether directly or indirectly, through the Banque Misr Foundation for Community Development and Welfare's (BMFCDW) participation in a number of social activities and initiatives. This is in addition to the foundation's work towards achieving the best for the community, whether in terms of healthcare, the environment, or anything related to human rights.
In the field of health, the foundation contributed to developing, supporting, and equipping a number of medical units in public and university hospitals at a total cost of EGP 25 million. This included developing the surgery unit at Al-Amereya General Hospital in Alexandria, and equipping the New Children's Hospital at Ain Shams University, as well as the intensive care unit at the Heart and Chest Hospital in Minya University. This was in addition to equipping the intensive care unit in the Hawamdeyah Hospital, as well as the interventional pain units at Cancer Institute in Assiut, and the neurosurgery unit in Zagazig University Hospital. The foundation also contributed to equipping two isolation rooms at the Internal Medicine Hospital in Ain Shams University, as well as medical devices in the ophthalmology hospital in Qalawoun, and dialysis machines in Nasr El-Nouba Hospital and Naga' Hammadi Hospital.
Banque Misr also participated in the charity event for Shefa Al-Orman Hospital in Luxor, to aid the people of Upper Egypt. The designs for the first phase of the hospital have been completed, which aims to treat 5,000 to 7,000 patients annually. Additionally, the bank supports the Suez Canal University Hospitals, which provide medical and educational services to people from the Suez governorates and South Sinai. This is in addition to supporting the Egyptian Society of Women's Health, a non-profit charity organization that is considered among the few organizations seeking to treat women and girls who have been subject to physical abuse resulting in disfiguration.
Further, out of the bank's recognition for the value of education, the Banque Misr Foundation provided a number of scholarships to students of Nile University, in the fields of Engineering and Business Management for bachelor's and higher education degrees. The bank moreover supported the national literacy program, in collaboration with Ain Shams University and a number of other sponsors, as well as supporting the Cairo University Technology Transfer Competition.
The bank also supported the project for the second phase of the Grand Egyptian Museum, as well as supporting the teacher training initiative, under the sponsorship of the Ministry of Education by signing a contract with the Education First foundation. In this regard, the bank participated in supporting the program to train 4,000 math teachers in 721 language schools across all governorates in Egypt. The bank also provided support in the Damietta governorate to complete the construction and preparations in a number of schools.
Moreover, out of its belief in the role of the youth in all fields, aiming toward a better future, the bank organized the sixth Ramadan football tournament for children in 2016, as well as the chess tournament for bank employees and their children. The bank awarded 25 gold and silver medals to the children, in addition to a number of individual and group prizes for the football tournament. The bank also sponsored the Egyptian paralympic delegation to join the Paralympic Games in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, aiming to support Egypt's special-needs champions. The bank also supported the Women's Tennis Championship in Sharm El-Sheikh, aiming to promote tourism in the city of piece. A total of 64 players from over 25 countries participated in the championship. Additionally, the bank supported the Ramadan football tournaments for youth centers for the fifth consecutive year, in which 456 team participated from across the nation, comprising about 4,000 participants.
As for the field of social solidarity, the Banque Misr Foundation organized an annual celebration for orphaned children in nine governorates. Celebrations were held with the children, including sports, thinking games, drawing, and songs, in a joyful familial atmosphere, which saw the distribution of sweets, toys, and prizes. The celebrations provide a positive example to other charity organizations due to the great benefit it presents.
Additionally, in the field of social development, the Banque Misr Foundation, in collaboration with a number of other local organizations and universities, undertook development projects in Egyptian villages, as well as projects to develop informal settlements. The projects were undertaken in 18 of the villages most in need of development, in the governorates of Sohag, Luxor, Aswan, Menoufia, Qalyubia, and Fayoum. The projects aimed to improve the quality of life of citizens in these areas through developing the standards of health and educational services, and providing training and employment opportunities for the youth. They also sought to improve the infrastructure in homes that were unfit for habitation, in addition to organizing medical convoys to treat village residents. This is in addition to developing a number of informal settlements in Cairo socially, educationally, and economically, including Al-Basateen, Arab Al-Maadi, and Doweika. The bank also contributed to providing professional training for mothers, and supporting their small projects, as one of the neediest segments of society.