From CEO, Abdirashid M. Duale
2014 Calendar Year
On behalf of the Board, Management, staff, agents and partners of Dahabshiil Group, I wish to extend my greetings to you and your families on the occasion of the year 1435 of the Hijra Calendar and the start of 2014.
The year 2013 saw our Group performance grow from strength to strength thanks to efforts by our staff and continued loyalty from our customers. We continue to grow and innovate whilst retaining our original qualities of trust, integrity and customer focus.
The significant challenge for the Group in 2013 was the announcement by Barclays that it was removing banking services from 250 companies in the UK including Dahabshiil’s money transfer business in Britain. I would like to thank all of those who were so supportive of us and the issue. Our confidence in the strength of our case made us determined to take it to the High Court. An interim injunction issued by the High Court in London in November means we continue to have banking arrangements. We use the services of a number of banks throughout the world, including our own bank Dahabshil Bank International, in order to best serve our customers.
Despite these challenges, Dahabshiil Group delivered good results and the Group continues to increase its financial strength throughout the world. We are confident that 2014 holds further opportunities for our growth and performance.
Dahabshiil Money Transfer
During 2013 we made further progress, expanding our money transfer services into more remote regions across the territories in which we operate to ensure we offer fast, reliable and efficient services to even more people. We have met and will continue to consistently meet and surpass regulatory and anti-money laundering requirements within the countries that we operate.
2013 was largely a year of expansion for Somtel, now a leading mobile telecommunications company in East Africa, which offers the latest technology to deliver voice and data services to our clients. For the first time, Somtel has extended its services to South Central Somalia and Puntland. Somtel also opened offices in very remote, predominantly pastoral and fishing areas in order to bring our services to new customers and communities. The Company considerably improved its customer care approach by staffing a 24 hour call centre. We already communicate with our money transfer customers by mobile phone, and will be expanding this service to have increased access to mobile payments in 2014 and believe these will provide a significant development to the telecommunication industry in the Somali territories.
Dahabshil Bank International (DBI)
DBI was founded in Djibouti and has expanded its operations in three major Somali cities (Hargeisa, Bosaso and Mogadishu) with a promise to leverage our strong brand and improve financial services in the region. The bank’s primary markets are in the Horn of Africa and the Somali Diaspora around the world. We are committed to contributing to the local and regional communities we serve by increasing access to bank accounts and connecting the region to the international financial system. Transparency is an integral part of our operations, both towards regulatory bodies and towards our customers, and we will continue to offer innovative products with focus on excellent and efficient service.
Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR)
Over the years Dahabshiil Group has prided itself on its regular contribution towards community regeneration activities. We have continued this long-standing tradition of helping the communities in the areas where we operate, supporting projects in the US, Europe and Africa. Within the Somali territories we concentrated on infrastructure and made substantial contributions towards the building and maintenance of roads in major towns. Health, education and emergency aid also featured at the top of our CSR agenda. We built hospitals, bridges, classrooms, libraries and university buildings. We also made substantial donations during periods of humanitarian crisis.
I am grateful to staff, agents and partners of Dahabshiil Group whose efforts have enabled the company to stand the test of time since 1970. We have proven that we are not just a business; we provide a lifeline service to the Somali territories and other African countries. We enable migrant communities to help themselves by sending money home so that relatives and friends can buy food, medicine and pay for education. We also help international organisations involved in humanitarian and investment activities.
We are also proud to be among the pioneers in telecommunication and financial services within the Somali territories.
With continued loyalty and support we are confident that 2014 will be another successful year. Insha allah.