AS part of its financial inclusion initiative, First Bank of Nigeria Limited has unveiled plan to grow its customer base by over 10 million new customers in the next three years.
Managing Director and Chief Executive Officer of First Bank of Nigeria Limited and Subsidiaries, Dr. Adesola Adeduntan, who disclosed this in Lagos disclosed that FirstBank currently has over 10 million customers, adding that its new management is working towards growing this to over 20 million by 2019 through a phased deployment of agency banking.
According to a press statement, Adeduntan unfolded the key strategic focus of the Bank to Editors and online publishers at a parley which had other members of the new management, including the Deputy Managing Director, Mr. Gbenga Shobo and other members of the executive management in attendance.
Describing the bank as a ‘strategically important Bank’ to the Nigerian economy, Adeduntan said the objectives of the new management which assumed office in January 2016, includes to retain the spot as the number one bank in the country and sub-region; and to continue to be fully embedded in the nation’s economy whilst delivering value to all its stakeholders.
Going by its recent financial results, Adeduntan said FirstBank ranks above its peers in terms of earnings generation and remains the biggest and the largest bank in Nigeria, with over 500billion in gross earnings – the largest in the industry, adding that its liquidity ratio and capital adequacy ratio are well above regulatory required benchmarks.
Acknowledging that the Bank has some challenged loans in its portfolios, Adeduntan assured that a number of those loans are being remediated, while the management is pro-actively taking steps to recover others, noting that the Bank’s entire credit management process is being reviewed in sync with the new wave of risk management framework initiatives.
Meanwhile, Fitch, a global leader in credit ratings and research on Monday released a rating which affirmed the Viability Ratings (VR) of all the Nigeria banks, Fitch has revised the SRFs to ‘B’ from ‘B+’ for the systemically important banks; FirstBank, UBA, Zenith and GTB following the downgrade of Nigeria’s sovereign ratings.
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