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Ecobank, UBA, Flutterwave & Aig-Imoukhuede’s Clinch Awards at African Banker Gala Ceremony

Ecobank, UBA, Flutterwave & Aig-Imoukhuede’s Clinch Awards at African Banker Gala Ceremony

AMA PRESS RELEASE

Top Nigerian Banks and technocrat are among those that picked award at the most prestigious event in the African banking calendar, the African Banker Awards Gala Ceremony 2024, took place last night in Nairobi, Kenya, on the sidelines of the African Development Bank Annual Meetings.

The ceremony was attended by over 300 of the continent’s leading figures in banking and finance.

The lifelong dedication is honoured with Lifetime Achievement award was given to Mr. Aigboje Aig-Imoukhuede for his journey in the banking industry, spanning three decades, which has been inspirational, and in his role as Chairman of Access Holdings and Coronation Group, through which he drives investments and initiatives that promote economic development across the continent.

A true titan of finance, he dedicated his award to his business partner and co-founder of Access Bank, Herbert Onyewumbu Wigwe, who died earlier this year in a helicopter crash.

Together they have managed to turn a tier-3 bank in Nigeria into one of the continent’s leading financial institutions in less than two decades. In his closing remarks Aigboje Aig-Imoukhuede stressed the importance of Africa owning its own capital in order to chart its own future.

The Fintech of the Year was won Flutterwave while the SME Bank of the Year was grabbed by Ecobank, and the Regional Bank of the Year, West became the pride of United Bank for Africa (UBA).

Now in its 18th edition, the African Banker Awards celebrate the achievements of individuals and institutions that have contributed significantly to the growth and development of Africa’s banking sector over the past year. This year’s awards ceremony in particular saw DFIs triumph, enjoying successes, in both institutional and individual categories, and representing the increased growth they enjoy in the African financial ecosystem.

In his speech, Omar Ben Yedder, chair of the Awards Committee noted that banks and financial institutions are going through an important transition and are playing a critical role in financing growth especially with the retreat of international banks from the continent.

“We are seeing a coalition of DFIs taking shape and these will have to see considerable capital increases to plug the gap in infrastructure, trade, climate and also SME Financing. These will have to be supported by policy makers in an even more meaningful way. We’re also seeing further reform and new capital requirements for banks. This will lead to bigger banks and we have seen how the likes of UBA, Access, Zenith and GTB in Nigeria for example play a role in financing big conglomerates and large infrastructure projects, something unimaginable two decades ago”, he said.

Vincent Nmehielle, Secretary General of the African Development Bank, said that this year’s Annual Meetings were some of the best attended and this showed the convening power of the Bank and how it can bring key stakeholders together to drive the continent’s development.

SME financing was cited by many as the fastest growing and most important asset class. Jules Ngankam, Group CEO of the African Guarantee Fund, called for banks to do even more in this sector that had been consistently profitable across the board, be it in agriculture, manufacturing and including in lending to youth and women, two underserved segments.

Banker of the Year

Mr. Admassu Tadesse, TDB Group President and Managing Director

Bank of the Year

African Export Import Bank (Afreximbank)

African Banker Icon

Ms. Razia Kahn, Chief Economist MEA at Standard Chartered

Lifetime Achievement

Mr. Aigboje Aig-Imoukhuede, Chairman, Access Holdings and Coronation Group

Central Bank Governor of the Year

H.E. Kamau Thugge C.B.S., Governor of the Central Bank of Kenya

Minister of Finance of the Year

H.E. Iipumbu Shiimi, Finance Minister of Namibia

Sustainable Bank of the Year

Standard Bank Group

DFI of the Year

Arab Bank for Economic Development in Africa (BADEA)

AFAWA Bank of the Year Award

Centenary Rural Development Bank

Fintech of the Year

Flutterwave

SME Bank of the Year

Ecobank

Deal of the Year – Debt

€774m Project Strada – Senegal – MUFG Bank

Deal of the Year – Equity

US$1.1bn investment into Mopani copper mines – Rothschild and Co

Deal of the Year – Agriculture

US$400m Evergrow for Specialised Fertilisers – National Bank of Egypt

Deal of the Year – Infrastructure

US362.5m Standard Gauge Railway – Tanzania – African Export Import Bank (Afreximbank) and Standard Chartered

Regional Bank of the Year – North

EFG Holding

Regional Bank of the Year – Southern

Mauritius Commercial Bank (MCB)

Regional Bank of the Year – East

Uganda Development Bank (UDB)

Regional Bank of the Year – Central

Rawbank, DRC

Regional Bank of the Year – West

United Bank for Africa (UBA)

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