Barclays Bank of Kenya launched its stock brokerage subsidiary Barclays Financial Services Limited (BFSL), with a focus on research to inform its clients. Through their own portal, Barclays Live, the brokerage arm will better inform their clients from the data derived from the portal, a distinct product from all other listed financial services companies.
BFSL will be offering cash equity trading services, fixed income and bond trading and derivatives. The company added that they also planning to launch Exchange Traded Funds (ETFs) and are working closely with the Capital Markets Authority and the Nairobi Securities Exchange under the new NSE rules.
Barclays Live will provide world class global research, indices, data and analytical tools, and clients sector-based research, across agriculture, business services, commodities, financial institutions, global development organisations, healthcare manufacturing, transport and logistics, read a statement from the bank.
The launch comes a day after Bloomberg reported that the Kenyan Securities Exchange recorded more trading than Nigerian Stock Exchange for the first time. Investors put more money into Kenyan stocks than Nigeria’s for the first time on record in September.
Anthony Kirui will be spearheading the team as the Head of Equities assisted by Anthony Wangari and Tito Munene Namu.
Mr. Geoffrey Odundo, Chief Executive Officer of the Nairobi Securities Exchange, lauded Barclays for the launch of Barclays Financial Services Limited affirming that it is in line with Kenya targeting to be a financial hub. He added that it also informs the Securities Exchange drive to innovate solutions and products. In 2013, the Nairobi Securities Exchange was voted the most innovative African bourse by Africa investor.
The move by Barclays comes at a time when they are seeking to diversify their income. Recently, they launched an insurance company. Mr. Jeremy Awori Managing Director, Barclays Bank of Kenya affirmed that diversifying its portfolio is meant to increase their revenues. Currently 32 percent of its revenues is non-interest income, something he wants to see increase above 40 percent.
BSFL will also focus on Institutional clients before later expanding the portfolio.