By Aduragbemi Omiyale
A woman is now the Chairman of Ecobank Nigeria Limited and she is Mrs Bola Adesola, a banker with over three decades in the banking industry.
She is one of the three females appointed to the board of the lender, according to a statement issued to newsmen on Wednesday. The other non-executive directors selected to join the board are Mrs Titilayo Olujobi and Mrs Bimbola Wright.
Mrs Adesola is leading the board of Ecobank Nigeria following the expiration of the tenure of Mr John Aboh, who has transformed the financial institution since assuming office some years ago.
“I am honoured to be appointed as Chairman of the Board of Ecobank Nigeria. I am familiar with the brand and the proud history that is built on a strong foundation across the African continent and indeed globally,” Mrs Adesola said of her appointment.
Speaking further, she expressed a desire to work closely “with the other members of the board and executive team as we continue our journey to be top in the Nigerian market, by setting the standards in financial services for our customers.”
“I would also like to express my thanks to my predecessor, Mr John Aboh, a consummate and respected banker for a very successful tenure and wish him all the best for the future,” she further stated.
In his remarks, the Managing Director of Ecobank Nigeria, Mr Patrick Akinwuntan, welcomed the new board leader and the two other appointees on behalf of “the entire staff and management of Ecobank Nigeria.”
“We will give them our full support in ensuring the actualization of the Bank’s strategic plans in Nigeria,” he assured, thanking “Mr John Aboh who recently retired from the board after successfully completing his tenure of office.”
According to him, while Mr Aboh was in charge, “the bank made remarkable progress in growing its market share and repositioning Ecobank Nigeria for leadership in the Nigerian financial services sector.”
The new directors, according to the statement, are expected to move the company higher with their “wealth of experience in the financial services industry, their professionalism and integrity, that has earned them international respect.”
Mrs Adesola has commendable leadership qualities and successfully driven expansion initiatives in several banks. She retired from Standard Chartered Bank as the Senior Vice-Chairman, Africa.
Prior to this role, she was the Managing Director/Chief Executive Officer for Standard Chartered Nigeria and West Africa for eight years with oversight over the bank’s West African subsidiaries, including Ghana, Cote D’Ivoire, The Gambia, Sierra Leone, and Cameroun.
Mrs Adesola was also the Chairperson of the Board of Standard Chartered Bank Mauritius and a Director at Standard Chartered, Ghana.
She had also served as an Executive Director, Corporate Banking and Executive Director Lagos Directorate at First Bank of Nigeria; Managing Director, Kakawa Discount House, Nigeria.
An alumnus of Harvard Business School and Lagos Business School, she also holds a Law degree from the University of Buckingham, UK and is an Associate of the Chartered Institute of Arbitrators, U.K and Nigeria amongst others.
On her part, Mrs Titilayo Olujobi is a well-rounded and experienced professional with nearly four decades of experience in Public Accounting, Banking, Training Facilitation, Business Consulting and Coaching.
She is a Fellow of the Institute of Chartered Accountants of Nigeria (ICAN) and a Certified Professional Coach of the International Coaching Federation (ICF).
Mrs Olujobi, who is currently Non-Executive Director of IBFCAlliance Limited, started her professional career at Z. O. Ososanya & Co and Coopers and Lybrand (now PriceWaterhouse Coopers) where she led audit assignments and consulted on tax issues.
She was at Nigeria International Bank Limited (now Citibank Nigeria Limited) as a Management Associate and rose through the ranks across multiple positions to become Vice President (Deputy General Manager).
She was Managing Director, IBFCAgusto Training Limited; Executive Director of IBFCAlliance Limited after the merger of IBFCAgusto and Alliance Consulting. She holds a B.Sc. Degree in Economics from the University of Ife (now Obafemi Awolowo University).
Mrs Bimbola Wright is a transformative and human-centred professional with 33 years of banking experience in top financial institutions, over 20 years of which was at senior leadership levels.
She is currently an Executive Director with Wright & Co Limited, a management consulting firm based in Lagos; Chairperson of the Board of Arami Essentials; member of the Institute of Directors, where she sits on the board of IoD Centre for Corporate Governance; and Fellow of the Nigeria Institute of Management.
Her career commenced with NAL Bank Plc (now part of Sterling Bank), from where she moved to Kakawa Discount House which was later acquired by FBN Holdings Plc to become FBNQuest Merchant Bank; she was an Executive Council member of Women in Management, Business and Public Services (WIMBIZ). Bimbola holds a B.Sc in Human Biology from Surrey University, an M.A. in International Relations from the University of Kent at Canterbury.