Capital Ethiopia Newspaper

Zemen bank to build HQ in financial district

Zemen Bank is to join the financial hub located within a few kilometres radius of the National Bank of Ethiopia (NBE).

Most of financial institutions are building or have already established their head quarters in the heart of the city around NBE, while it is not an obligation for banks or insurance companies to locate by the National Bank, many have found it advantageous to do so.


Zemen, one of the youngest but most prominent banks, is waiting the final approval from the Addis Ababa City Administration to secure 2,304sqm of land in front of Commercial College of Addis Ababa University, which is around National Theatre.

Helaway Tadesse, senior vice president of Zemen, said that the bank will commence its head quarter construction in 2012 following the approval of the plot that is awaited from the city land board and finalization of detail design works.

On Thursday December 8, 2011 the bank has selected its future head quarter design from 18 competitors. According to the bank officials, the design selection process has taken close to four months.

The thirty storey building is being designed by JDAW Consulting Architects and Engineers, a local consultant firm.  The design is in the initial stages. It will be concluded after a financial deal between the firm and the board of Zemen Bank.

According to Ermias Eshetu, vice president of marketing of Zemen Bank, the design deal including bill of quantity work will take about six months. The bank plans to commence the construction right away after the finalization of land process and dealing with a consultant firm.

The bank handed out three awards for the design. Jdaw received 120, 000 birr, Roha Consulting Architect 80,000 birr and Dawit Getachew 50,000 birr for their designs.

The bank’s current head quarters is located behind Hilton Hotel at Joseph Tito Street. Zemen and Oromia are the two youngest banks that are under process to construct their own headquarters.

Last fiscal year, Zemen Bank recorded 84.7 million birr in net profits, which is close to double the level of the previous year, and equivalent to its earnings per share of 58 percent.

The bank’s gross profit is 121 million birr in the 2010/11 fiscal year based on an audited financial report. A year ago (2009/10 budget year), Zemen registered 41.8 million birr net profit, and profit earnings per share were 38.7 percent.

Supporting the bank’s financial results was the rapid growth in all key operational measures. Deposits rose by close to 70 percent during the year, rising from 688 million birr to 1.162 billion birr, while loans reached 633 million birr as of June 2011 compared to 377 million birr a year earlier. Foreign exchange inflows to the bank rose to 12 million dollars per month and showed a 50 percent increase from the previous year.

Zemen Bank attributes its exceptional financial and operational performance in part to its unique business model which relies mainly on a single branch whose activities are supplemented by multiple service points such as ATMs, internet banking, foreign exchange bureaus, and banking kiosks.