United Bank of Africa launched a three-year strategic plan called Project Alpha to transform its operations and capture opportunities in African economy
| By Maureen Chigbo | Sep. 16, 2013 @ 01:00 GMT
THE United Bank for Africa Plc, UBA, a Pan-African bank with operations in 19 African countries and New York, London and Paris, is marching on with its transformation agenda. On September 2, in Lagos, the bank launched Project Alpha – the group’s next stage focus of strategic transformation. Project Alpha is a three-year road map of key transformation initiatives, designed to consolidate the bank group’s strategic positioning and fully capture the opportunities from Africa’s economic renaissance and the group’s unique platform.
Project Alpha is focused on leveraging all aspects of the group’s footprint, product offerings and operational capability, allowing a commitment to customer service transformation, market share growth, the implementation of key e-banking initiatives across all segments, the growth of corporate and trade finance capabilities and significant investment in the human capital represented by the more than 25,000 UBA work force. UBA has for eight years executed a dedicated strategy of local, regional and global expansion, the implementation of which has seen the group transform from a national player to an institution of international prominence.
A series of hired senior executive underline the group’s commitment to Project Alpha. Apollos Ikpobe has been appointed as deputy managing director, Domestic Bank and Obi Ibekwe as executive director, human resources and customer service. Both appointments have been approved by the Central Bank of Nigeria, CBN.
Ikpobe, who was, until recently, an executive director at Zenith Bank, a position he held for seven years, brings with him more than 21 years of experience of the Nigerian banking sector. Ikpobe will be responsible for driving UBA’s domestic business in Nigeria. His appointment complements the position of existing Kennedy Uzoka, deputy managing director, responsible for resources and treasury.
Ibekwe, the new executive director, Human Resources and Customer Service, had a distinguished career with Zenith Bank Plc, where she was responsible for Human Resource Management, Customer Services, as well as Credit Risk Management. She has a background in consulting, banking and customer service, critical for leading the renewed service excellence culture at UBA. Her appointment to the board brings to five the number of female directors at the Group board of UBA.
Other key appointments also announced include Rasheed Adegoke, general manager in charge of Group Information Technology. Adegoke joins UBA from First Bank of Nigeria, where he was CIO, a role he has held over 13 years at different institutions in the Nigerian financial services sector. He is a technology and process strategist and with hands-on expertise in the design and delivery of high-performance information technology and business process improvement solutions to address complex business problems.
A critical aspect of the Project Alpha initiative is the focus on UBA Africa, whose contribution currently at 20 percent of group performance, is planned to be 50 percent by 2016. To drive this, the group is reinforcing its senior African leadership.
Emmanuel Nnorom, formerly executive director, Finance and Risk Management, UBA, has been appointed as the CEO of UBA Africa. Other senior level appointments in UBA Africa include Amie Sow, managing director, UBA Senegal; Demola Ogunfeyimi, managing director, UBA Tanzania; Mamadou Sanon, managing director, UBA Gabon; Martin Che, managing director, UBA Congo Brazzaville; Marcel Bitang, managing director, UBA DRC; Stanley Ugwueze, managing director, UBA Zambia; Abiola Bawuah, deputy managing director, UBA Ghana; Benedict Nklama, executive director, UBA Kenya; Wilbrod Owor, executive director, UBA Uganda and Chinedu Obeta, executive director, UBA Sierra Leone.
“UBA is able to recruit the cream of African banking talents and we are proud to be able to provide a dynamic platform for these Africans to contribute to our continent’s transformation. Our people remain our greatest asset and we will continue to strategically retool and resource to achieve and surpass the goals of Project Alpha”, said Phillips Oduoza, the group managing director, UBA.
“More broadly, Project Alpha allows us both to build on the existing strengths of our franchise, but more importantly demonstrates that going forward we continue to reinvent ourselves, ensuring we capture and deliver the maximum of value for clients, shareholders and staff,” Oduoza explained.
United Bank for Africa Plc is one of Africa’s leading financial institutions, offering banking services to more than seven million customers across more than 700 branches in 19 African countries. With presence in New York, London and Paris, UBA is connecting people and businesses across Africa through retail, commercial and corporate banking, innovative cross border payments and trade finance.