First Bank: Okonkwo Appointed FBN Holdings’ GMD, Eke Bows Out

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FBN Holdings Plc. yesterday announced the appointment of the immediate past Managing Director of Fidelity Bank Plc., Mr. Nnamdi Okonkwo, as Group Managing Director (GMD) of the holding company. The appointment, which followed the retirement of the current GMD, Mr. U.K. Eke, would become effective from December 31, 2021.

The financial institution announced the changes in a statement signed by the Company Secretary, Seye Kosoko, which was presented on the floor of the Nigerian Exchange Limited.
The board further announced the renewal of the appointments of Dr. Adesola Adeduntan and Mr. Gbenga Shobo as Managing Director and Deputy Managing Director of First Bank, respectively, for another term.

In addition, it announced the appointment of Meristem Registrars Limited as the new Registrars for FBN Holdings, replacing First Registrars and Investors Services Limited, with effect from December 1, 2021.

The statement said Eke was retiring after successfully completing his two-term tenure, adding that he has notified the company of his retirement since August 10, 2021.

It added, “Eke’s retirement follows from a 35 years career in financial services, strategy, auditing, consulting, taxation, process reengineering, and capital market operations.

He has spent almost 11 years in the FBN Holdings Group, serving meritoriously in the last six years as Group Managing Director. He has been able to build sustainable synergies across the FBN Holdings Group, fostering collaborations to maximize business development opportunities with diverse stakeholders globally.”

The statement also said the tenure of the outgoing GMD witnessed an upsurge in value creation for shareholders and other stakeholders, with a diversified and healthier portfolio. Remarkably, it pointed out that as of January 1, 2016, FBN Holdings’ share price was N5.13 per share and market capitalization of N175 billion trading at price to book of 0.29. it said, comparatively, as of October 26, 2021, the price was N12.40, with a market capitalization of about N445 billion and a price to book of 0.58.

The statement said, “The FBN Holdings Board has also announced that Eke will be succeeded by Mr. Nnamdi Okonkwo, a focused and result-oriented top banker, who will assume office as Group Managing Director, FBN Holdings Plc effective January 1, 2022.
“Okonkwo, the immediate past Chief Executive Officer of Fidelity Bank Plc, brings to bear on the Board of FBN Holdings more than 30 years unbroken banking career spanning local and international experience.
“He has a wealth of experience in transformational leadership, business strategy development and visioning, innovative corporate governance, and risk management.

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He has led the transformation of banks, with the most recent being Fidelity Bank, where he led the management team in seven years to achieve remarkable results culminating in tripling profit and shareholder value.”

Okonkwo previously served as Executive Director for Southern Nigeria in Fidelity Bank. He has also served on the international scene as Managing Director of UBA Ghana; Director, UBA Liberia; and a Director of the Ghana National Banking College.

He had served in various leadership positions across other financial institutions, including Broad Bank of Nigeria Limited; Citizens International Bank, Nigeria; FSB International Bank Plc., Nigeria; Guaranty Trust Bank Plc., Nigeria; and Merchant Bank of Africa, Nigeria.

Okonkwo made remarkable feats as a Director in various organizations, including UBA Ghana, UBA Liberia, Nigeria e-government Strategy (Negst), Nigeria Interbank Settlement System Plc., Unified Payment System Limited, and Chairman, Shareholders Audit Committee FMDQ, among others.

His appointment is subject to the approval of regulatory authorities.
The Board of FBN Holdings also approved the appointment of Mrs. Tope Orhionsefe Omage as non-executive Director of First Bank of Nigeria Limited by the Board of FirstBank, subject to the approval of the CBN.

In the same vein, it announced the renewal of appointments of Mr. Kayode Akinkugbe and Mr. Taiwo Okeowo as Managing Director and Deputy Managing Director of FBNQuest Merchant Bank Limited, respectively, for another term.

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