Nepal's best domestic bank 2019: Nabil Bank
Nabil Bank is considered a trailblazer in Nepal. By local standards, it is quite old; it was set up in 1984, during the first wave of economic liberalization, when it was granted a coveted licence to become what was then the only privately run, onshore lender.
Ask any foreign bank, or many local ones, to identify the best financial institution in Nepal and more often than not they point to Nabil.
By almost any measure, it is either the star pupil or close to being top of the class. Success in some markets can be relative, based on strong performance in a few financial services or metrics, but not in this case.
Nabil Bank is more profitable than any of its peers in the public or private sector. It reported net profit of NRs3.98 billion ($36 million) in the financial year ending in mid July 2018, up 7.6% on an annualized basis, with operating profit up 7.5%, to NRs5.65 billion.
Customer deposits rose 14.4% in the same period, with local currency deposits up 22.7% to NRs124.4 billion, an increase that was well above the industry average of 19.5%.
Perhaps the bank’s most notable achievement was its success in raising its level of paid-up capital to NRs8 billion. It remains the only lender in the private sector to meet the central bank’s reserve requirement – and did so without buying a commercial rival or issuing additional shares.
No local rival comes anywhere close to competing with its range of services in the digital realm.
Chief executive Anil Shah tells Asiamoney that the bank is always on the lookout for new services and sectors to maintain its lead.
He says: “To continue to be number one, we always look to do things differently, from rolling out new digital services, to shifting our focus to small and medium-sized enterprises and mid-sized corporates, to getting a bigger footprint across Nepal.”