Three Nigerian Banks Make World’s 500 Best

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FIRST Bank of Nigeria Plc, Guaranty Trust Bank Plc and Zenith Bank Plc have been named among the world’s 500 most valuable bank brands in the 2014 global rankings by Brand Finance Plc. A statement by the organisation said that by its study, the Banker/Brand Finance Banking 500 rated First Bank as the seventh Africa’s Most Valuable Bank Brand and 382 globally.

According to the statement, the world’s biggest banks are ranked by their brand value, with the results reflecting industry trends and indicating future developments. It said that First Bank in 2014 recorded a brand value of $228m following a 13.44 percent increase over its $201 million brand value ranking in 2013.

Guaranty Trust Bank is 10th on the African ladder, with a brand value of $191 million, declining by nearly five percent compared to its brand value of $201 million recorded in 2013 while Zenith Bank was ranked 11th as Africa’s most valuable banking brand, with a brand value of $174 million in 2014, representing a marginal increase of 1.21 percent over its $172 million in 2013.

According to the statement, Standard Bank of South Africa still held its position as Africa’s most valuable banking brand and it recorded a brand value growth of over 15 percent, which took its total value to nearly $1.6 billion. The statement said: “The $211 million increase is by far the biggest improvement of many African banks and stands in marked contrast to other brands from South Africa. Togo’s Ecobank, which is Africa’s most valuable bank brand to be based outside South Africa, has grown by 14.51 percent to a total of $243million.”

David Haigh, chief executive officer, Brand Finance Plc, said that Nigerian banks have put in another impressive performance in the Brand Finance Banking 500 this year because a bank such as First Bank of Nigeria Limited has benefitted from prudent financial management and Nigeria’s economic growth. He said, however, that the most important factor has been an understanding that banks must prioritise their intangible assets, measuring, monitoring and managing their brands to achieve sustainable growth and maximise value.

Babatunde Odumeru, Country Representative, Brand Finance Plc, said that First Bank of Nigeria had continued to grow its brand value and that the bank had also moved up the global ranking, adding that it was a welcome development. He added that other banks such as GTB and Zenith bank had fared well.

Risk Management Award for Sterling Bank

Yemi Adeola, MD Sterling bank
Yemi Adeola, MD Sterling bank

STERLING Bank Plc, has been honoured for efficiently and consistently managing its risks in the Banking and Investment Services category of the prestigious Nigeria Risk Award. The award according to a statement from the bank, was organised by Conrads Clark Nigeria Limited, a United Kingdom-affiliated institution, in conjunction with Institute of Risk Management, UK, to reward organisations with impressive enterprise risk management practices in Nigeria.

The umpire affirmed that Sterling Bank was honoured with the award based on its upscale risk management practice. This, according to the institution, has led to a significant contribution to the entrenchment of a risk management culture within the bank and a commitment to a sound, safe and stable financial institution.

According to the Qualified Security Assessor, Sterling Bank remains the only bank that has achieved the fastest turnaround time between the project commencement and that of obtaining certification. This was achieved within a remarkable six-month period. Joachim Adenusi, managing director, CCN, said that the process of qualifying for the medal was very rigorous, transparent and professionally handled by eminent risk managers selected from different parts of the world.

CBN Earmarks N132bn MSME Development Fund for Women

THE Central Bank of Nigeria, CBN, has earmarked N132billion for providing financial services to women from the N220billion Micro, Small and Medium Enterprises Development Fund. According to Sanusi Lamido Sanusi, CBN governor, the amount earmarked for women represents 60 percent of the total fund. The fund which was inaugurated on August 15, 2013, was aimed at channeling long-term, low-interest funds to the MSME sector of the economy through participating financial institutions.

Sanusi
Sanusi

Sanusi, said in operating the fund, a special consideration would be given to institutions that will provide financial services to graduates of the CBN’s Entrepreneurship Development Centres. He added that the specific objective of the fund was to reach no fewer than two million MSMEs in 10 years. He said, “The MSMED Fund has two broad objectives namely; social and commercial. The Social/Development Fund will constitute 10 per cent, broken down as follows: grants five percent; interest drawback, three percent and managing agents’ operational costs, two percent.

Sanusi stated that the CBN believed that developing the MSMEs was the key to economic advancement and wealth creation. He added that to ensure a sustainable economic development programme, policies and guidelines must be designed in such a way that all factors and peculiar needs and requirements of stakeholders were noted and addressed. Paul Eluhaiwe, director, Development Finance Department, CBN, said the MSMEDF is one of CBN’s interventions for grassroots economic development. He added that a number of stakeholders had been identified as participants under the fund.

According to him, the commitment of all stakeholders was required for the objectives of the fund to be fully achieved.  Abdulfatah Ahmed, Kwara State Governor, said MSMEs were pivotal for economic growth, increased productivity and industrialisation.

Compiled by Chinwe Okafor

— Feb. 24, 2014 @ 01:00 GMT

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