By Dipo Olowookere
The corporate identity of Access Bank Plc may have to change after the conclusion of its merger with Diamond Bank Plc in June 2019, Business Post has learnt.
This hint was dropped by the CEOs of Access Bank and Diamond Bank, Mr Herbert Wigwe and Mr Uzoma Dozie respectively at a forum held in Lagos recently
While addressing customers of the financial institution, Mr Dozie said Access Bank will retain its name after the merger, while Diamond Bank will definitely lose its. However, he disclosed that the new corporate identity of the new enlarged bank will reflect individual identities of the two merging lenders.
Late last year, Diamond Bank, a tier-1 one lender and Access Bank, a tier-2 financial institution, confirmed that they were coming together to become one. This came after both companies had initially denied media reports that they were planning such move.
At the customer forum in Lagos, Mr Dozie, while responding to a question on whether the enlarged bank will have a new name, said, “I believe that the name will be Access Bank, but the identity will be the one that is recognised by both Access Bank and Diamond Bank.
“So, it will be……just as we have come here today to inform you of what we are doing and get your feedback, we are also going to have a customer forum to help us decide what is the best identity that when people see, they will say this is Diamond Bank, this is Access Bank.”
Giving more insight into Mr Dozie’s point, Mr Wigwe said, “Let me just add to that point, if you go to global banks like Barclays Bank and HSBC that have gone through mergers and acquisitions, you can keep an identity, but you can also make sure you reflect the identity of the different institutions and what they do.
“So, the retail will look like what you see in Diamond Bank so you don’t lose your connection; that is how it happens.
“If you look at the corporate logo and how things will come out, you will not see that you’ve not lost anything.
“Same thing for Access Bank customers, because you know we were also at the corporate end. We also have to be mindful of these customers as well.
“So, we have to do something that will sit nice for Access Bank customers and also sit nice for the retail business of Diamond Bank.”
At the moment, Access Bank logo has ‘access’ written in white colour on a blue background strip with three orange colour ‘>’ sign placed at the end of the word (access>>>).
Business Post reports that both shareholders of Diamond Bank and Access Bank have not approved the merger yet as well as the various regulatory agencies.
Fidelity Bank to Develop SMEs Capacity in Non-Oil Exports
By Sodeinde Temidayo David
Fidelity Bank Plc is set to promote Small and Medium Enterprises (SMEs) capacity in the non-oil exports sector in a bid to promote its resolve to help Nigerian businesses build sustainable export capabilities.
This is coming as the leading Nigerian lender is set to host the 11th and 12th editions of its highly acclaimed Export Management Programme (EMP).
The EMP was launched in 2016 and is targeted at preparing participants for real-time experiences in the international non-oil export markets and the broader export market at large.
The session of the event is set to typically cover a wide range of topics including export documentation, selection and implementation of supply chain management for exports, application of export development business processes amongst others.
Speaking on the programme, the Managing Director of Fidelity Bank, Mrs Nneka Onyeali-Ikpe, noted that as a leading supporter of small businesses, the EMP was introduced to bridge the knowledge gap in the export business locally and to help participants to compete effectively in the global export market.
The 11th edition of the EMP is scheduled to hold at the Lagos Business School (LBS), Lekki, Lagos between October 4 and 8, 2021.
Following the success of previous editions and the yearnings of potential participants, the bank has also decided to host an edition of the training in Kano for those who would miss the Lagos session.
Tagged EMP 12, this is set to hold in Kano from October 11 to 15, 2021, at a venue in the state in which the bank has promised will soon be announced.
The sessions would be facilitated by leading faculty from LBS, Nigerian Export Promotion Council (NEPC) staff as well as experts in financial management and exports.
Interested participants are expected to register on the bank’s web platform.
According to Mrs Onyeali-Ikpe, the EMP was set up given the immense benefits that the non-oil sector provides to the economy and the nation in terms of providing much needed foreign exchange investments, increasing our Gross Domestic Product (GDP) and employment generation.
She further expressed that the company enjoys hosting the EMP as interested entrepreneurs take advantage of the initiative and take their business to the next level.
Fidelity Bank has over the years demonstrated its resolve to grow the non-oil export side of the economy through strategic initiatives and partnerships.
The bank has also successfully leveraged strategic partnerships with the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) and Development Finance Institutions (DFIs) under various industry targeted intervention funding programmes.
This is to enhance access to credit for eligible players in the agribusiness and non-oil exports space with the aim of addressing food security gaps and enhancing foreign exchange earnings.
Chipper Cash Launches Free P2P Money Transfers in SA
By Sodeinde Temidayo David
A fast-growing African financial technology start-up has officially launched Chipper Cash in South Africa, to offer domestic free peer-to-peer (P2P) money transfers.
With this, Chipper Cash will enable South Africans to enjoy free unlimited instant domestic money transfers, invest in cryptocurrencies, and buy and send airtime and data to loved ones.
Also coming with it, instant cross-border payments can be made from South Africa, joining other African countries such as Nigeria, Ghana, Uganda, Tanzania, Rwanda, and Kenya.
This is coming after the company secured $100 million which was set to enlarge its expansion, as it plans to introduce more products and grow its team.
Founded in 2018 by Mr Messrs Ham Serunjogi and Mr Maijid Moujaled, the Chipper Cash app was created with the aim of making money transfers easy and efficient for Africans.
It also aims to increase access to financial services for the underbanked as well as digitise daily payments to ease the reliance on cash.
Speaking on the expansion, Chipper Vice President of Strategy and Partnerships in Africa, Pardon Mujakachi, noted that domestic remittances are a lifeline for many families in South Africa and Chipper’s mission is to make the process more seamless and cost-effective for them.
With the introduction of Chipper Cash to the South African economy, people can instantly purchase airtime and data from leading South African network providers to send to friends and family.
Following this, a record had proven that as of 2019, South Africa had around 11 million unbanked people.
This left many people seeking alternative options for domestic remittances, which serves as a lifeline to the 24 million South Africans who send money to family and friends daily.
Adding to this, there are also 7.7 million people who moved to other provinces for work, resulting in over R157 billion, an estimated N4 trillion being moved across provinces annually.
Chipper Cash’s speed, very low cost and user-friendliness are set to challenge the high fees, complicated processes, and slow transfer times of traditional money transfer.
This is seen as its interface is intuitive, simple and makes sending money to friends and family as simple and instant as sending a text.
The company is still set to improve the making cross-border money transfers easy and affordable for Africans, as it currently has about 4 million users on its platform and has averaged 80,000 daily transactions with a value of $100 million in payments.
We’ll Continue to Drive Inclusive Growth in Africa—Standard Chartered
By Dipo Olowookere
Standard Chartered Bank has reaffirmed its determination to continue to use its experience in the international financial markets to drive inclusive growth and development in Africa.
Recently, the lender, alongside three other banks, acted as joint lead manager for Access Bank Plc on its $500 million senior Eurobond issuance.
The 5-year unsecured note (144A/RegS) under Access Bank’s $1.5 billion Global Medium-Term Note Programme was issued with a yield and coupon of 6.125 per cent with interest payable semi-annually in arrears.
Commenting on the exercise, the Executive Director in charge of Corporate, Commercial and Institutional Banking at Standard Chartered Nigeria & West Africa, Mr Olukorede Adenowo, noted that, “Standard Chartered is proud to partner with Access Bank on this momentous transaction.”
“The success of this issuance demonstrates investors’ confidence in Access’s strategy as a leading banking group out of Africa.
“We continue to work with our clients across Africa to deliver on their growth aspirations and also use our market-leading position in the international bond markets and sustainable financing space to drive inclusive growth and development in Africa,” he stated.
The bond, which matures in September 2026, is listed on the main market of the London Stock Exchange (LSE) and would be used for medium-term funding and help to enhance the capacity of the bank to support its general banking purposes.
The offering achieved the lowest (outstanding) Nigerian bank Eurobond coupon, supported by an over 3 times oversubscribed order book of over $1.6 billion, which represents the largest order book ever for a Nigerian bank Eurobond transaction.
The transaction saw significant demand from top-quality investors globally including the United States, Europe, the United Kingdom, Middle East, Asia and Africa, anchored by a number of large tickets.
The phenomenal success of this transaction is a strong testament to global investors’ confidence in Access Bank as well as Standard Chartered’s deep knowledge of the banking and financial markets industry, access to diverse global and local investor pool and strong relationships with the key stakeholders.
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