" />
Published On: Tue, Sep 29th, 2015

Onasanya bequeaths an enduring …grows profits, assets by 559%, 116% respectively

Making up their minds to choose a Group Managing Director from a pool of sharp, bright and competent Executive Directors of the oldest surviving bank in Nigeria was not an easy one. However, Mr. Olabisi Onasanya emerged after series of meetings, bickering and arguments in First Bank’s boardroom.
But one significant thing that made his appointment irresistible to the board was his effective and efficient management of one of its subsidiaries, First Pension Custodian Nigeria limited as Managing Director/CEO.
This was six years ago, precisely, in 2009. Ever since, the bank has not looked back. Stakeholders of the bank are, in fact, proud and happy that the board settled for Mr. Onasanya to pilot the affairs of the Century bank then.
This is because he did not only give the bank a fresh breathe, there was also a calculated measure to place the bank where it belonged, at the top and a flagship leader. Despite the harsh operating environment, Onasanya was able to take the bank to unprecedented heights and established it as a leading financial institution in Nigeria and Africa.
The bank noted that Onasanya has been able to stabilise and modernise the expanding First Bank brand since his appointment in 2009, thus reinforcing the confidence of the bank’s diverse stakeholders and the global financial publics.
Insider sources, told Hallmark that on assumption of office, the GMD confided in them that the bank needed a radical change to be able to compete and he focused first on working on the psychology of the staff to adopt ‘ I can do attitude’ and set goals and high targets for them.
Looking back, the team, as Onasanya would say has in the last six years grown the Group’s  total Assets from a paltry figure of N2.009 trillion in 2009, representing about 116 per cent to N4.342trillion in 2014.
Similarly, its profit after tax has leapt by 559 per cent to N82.838billion in 2014 from N12.569billion in 2009 while Gross earnings rose by 120 per cent to N480billion in 2014 from N217billion in 2009.
Presently, other performance indicators of the bank which include; NPL at 3.9%, loans /deposits at 67.7%, CAR at 19.1% and ROAE at 17.0% have been fairly impressive.
Even though the bank believes that target focus should apply now in its expansion plans, it had increased its branches from 510 in 2009 to 892 business locations. But it is a bit regrettable as it has started closing down non-profitable outlets which seen to have added to its huge cost of operations.
”In spite of the highlighted challenges, FBN Holdings Plc delivered solid financial results in 2014, across a number of key financial metrics including gross earnings and profit before taxes. This strong performance is championed by our Commercial Banking franchise, First Bank of Nigeria Limited, and buoyed by our Investment Banking and Asset Management business which is rapidly growing into a powerhouse in the investment banking space,” said Chairman of FBNH, Oba Otudeko.
”The bank prepared me very well for that job unconsciously. I had the opportunity in my days as the deputy general manager and financial controller to also combine that with being the co-coordinator of the enterprise transformation project. The duty gave me the opportunity to access and understand very deeply the strengths, weaknesses and opportunities of the bank.
In addition, my foray into First Pension Custodian gave me the opportunity to use the services of the bank as a customer. I was able to see the bank from the viewpoint of customers. After six months of being an executive director of banking, operations and services, I was appointed Group managing director, he once said.
‘ He is widely reputed as the architect of the modern FirstBank, associated with various innovative and creative achievements. He was Project Coordinator of Century 2, the new frontier, FirstBank’s far-reaching enterprise transformation project at the turn of the century, as well as Project Coordinator of the FirstBank Corporate Transformation project which has seen the bank accentuating its foothold on modernisation.
Mr. Onasanya also superintended the latest composite Corporate Identity/Brand Refresh of the FirstBank Group, a bold step heralding the international expansion of the FirstBank brand.”
Accolades from stakeholders
”Onasanya achieved a lot. He stirred the bank to safety in difficult times. Onasanya took the first bank to greater heights from where it was in 2009. A very safe and stable pair of hands, to have run the biggest bank in Nigeria in a time of turbulence was not an easy feat”, a Nigerian based Managing Director/ Chief Executive of Financial Derivatives Company limited, Bismarck Rewane said.
Dr. Richard Mayungbe, a financial analyst reckons that Mr.Onasanya brought a lot of re-engineering and innovation in the bank as well as improved the human assets of the financial institution.
President Association of Stockbrokers of Nigeria (ASHON) Emeka Madubuike told Hallmark in a telephone interview that looking at Onasanya’s performance from the capital market perspective is satisfying given that First Bank is a foundation stock. ”He has done well,” said he
”He is also reputed as a people person having pioneered significant transformation in the development of staff at FirstBank.
His tenure saw the transformation of the bank’s training centre into FirstAcademy, a best in class corporate university that recently clinched the 2015 Global Council of Corporate Universities Award for best impact by a corporate university on the implementation of business strategies.

 

The bank has also received the highly coveted Best Place to Work award.
He has served as a member of the Chartered Institute of Bankers Sub-Committee on Fiscal and Monetary Policies and a member of the Presidential Committee on Reduction of Interest Rates.
He has also delivered several papers and served on various conferences C-Suite panels across the globe.
He is Editor of the new book, “Perspectives on Banking in Nigeria”, featuring a collection of learned articles by banking and finance professionals including operators, regulators and academics.
Onasanya is retiring in December 2015. Yet he said, ”Within the Commercial Banking group, we will continue to drive increased segment specialisation across the organisation in line with the demands of an increasingly discerning customer base, evolving competitive environment and international best practices.
Over the medium term, we intend to raise our profile beyond its current borders, establishing presence in select sub-Saharan African countries that are of interest.
This expansion is expected to result in a number of benefits, including greater earnings diversification and increased shareholder value through higher returns on equity”, Onasanya has been a very strong voice to the clamour for the country to devalue her local currency, the Naira.

Leave a comment

XHTML: You can use these html tags: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <s> <strike> <strong>

Most Shared

Recent posts

  • CBN ruins Black Market business, says Gwadabe

    Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN’s) foreign exchange management policies have begun to put severe pressure on Nigeria’s parallel foreign currency market as ‘Black marketers’ begin to see their trading margins disappear. Indeed with more stable supply of forex and growing investor confidence on rising oil prices (currently at $74 per barrel) , the business of […]

  • Manufacturers groan despite improved bank liquidity

    By FELIX OLOYEDE Nigerian manufacturers are still credit-starved despite the improved liquidity of the banking sector. Although credit to the private sector has been rising, manufacturers have claimed that access to funds still pose a serious problem. Broad money in circulation increased 8.14 per cent to N2, 401.91 trillion in February 2018 compared to N2, […]

  • MAN, LCCI disagree over CFTA

    By UCHE CHRIS President Buhari seems to be coming under increasing pressure from both home and abroad over his refusal to sign the Continental Free Trade Area treaty last month at the meeting African Union Heads of states and government in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia. Also Nigerians particularly the business community are sharply divided over the […]

  • Gov. Wike: More garlands for Mr. Projects

    By OBINNA EZUGWU On Sunday April 15, 2018 at the Civic Centre, Victoria Island, Lagos, Rivers State governor, Nyesom Wike was the cynosure of all eyes as he stood firm and composed to the cheering of the audience at the capacity hall to receive the prestigious Zik Prize for good governance. It was indeed an […]

  • The Sterling Bank spreadsheet… an uppity lenders burden

    By TESLIM SHITTA-BEY Despite not stirring excitement in recent years, Sterling Bank Plc has run a recession gauntlet and come out looking marvelous. The bank in 2017 grew its gross earnings by slightly under twenty per cent to 19.79 per cent between 2016 and 2017.  The banks gross earnings (a measure of its business volume) […]

  • Melaye released after being detained, police deny involvement

    Kogi West senator, Dino Melaye has been released from detention reports reaching Business Hallmark indicate. The Senator was released after being detained by officials of the immigration service at the Nnamdi Azikiwe International Airport, Abuja on his way to Morocco The officials allege that he was detained based on an order from Interpol. However, the […]

  • Breaking: Senator Dino Melaye arrested at Abuja airport

      Senator Dino Melaye on Monday morning arrested after checking in at the international wing of the Nnamdi Azikiwe Airport, Abuja. The embattled senator representing Kogi West on the platform of the APC, tweeted that he was picked up on his way to Morocco for an official engagement sponsored by the Nigerian government. Melaye was […]

  • Big Brother Naija 2018: Miracle claims N25m cash prize, brand new SUV

    Miracle Ikechukwu Igbokwe has emerged the winner of Big Brother Nigeria #BBNaija, reality show. Miracle beats one of the most controversial housemates, Cee-C to win the ultimate grand prize of N25million cash, a brand new SUV among other prizes. Miracle is a young pilot and also a model. A total of 170 million votes were […]

  • Economy: Nigeria receives massive vote of confidence – Adeosun

    …We will continue to build reserves and save for the rainy day – Emefiele From OKEY ONYENWEAKU, Washington D.C, USA Minister of Finance, Kemi Adeosun Saturday in Washington D.C, USA said Nigeria has been praised for her good economic outlook.  Speaking to Journalists during a combined briefing with the Governor, Central Bank of Nigeria, Mr. […]

  • Nigeria-US Investment Summit not included in our schedule, says Adeosun, Emefiele

    The Minister of Finance, Kemi Adeosun and the governor of the Central Bank of Nigeria, Godwin Emefiele, have explained the reasons why they were absent at the Nigeria-Us Investors Summit which was held in Washington, DC on Saturday. The summit is organised by the Embassy of Nigeria in the United State and the absence of […]

  • Nigerian banks must grow risk-weighted assets to remain competitive, says Coronation Merchant Bank report

    FELIX OLOYEDE Ability to create risk asset creation in the real sector would set apart leaders of the Nigerian banking industry over the next three years, a new report from Coronation Research, a part of Coronation Merchant Bank Group has stated. The report released last week claimed that while the quality of asset in the […]

  • Nigerian equities market sheds 0.28%

    The equities market closed negative last week as Nigerian Stock Exchange All-Share Index (NSE ASI) dropped by 0.28 per cent to 40,814.89 basis points. Similarly, all other indices finished lower with the exception of NSE Consumer Goods, NSE Premium, NSE-Main Board, NSE 30, NSE Banking, NSE Oil/Gas, and NSE Pension indices, which appreciated by 1.08 […]

  • SEC expresses worry over spate of delisting companies

    FELIX OLOYEDE The spate of highly capitalised companies delisting from the Nigerian Stock Exchange (NSE) calls for some concern, the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) has stated. The Acting Director General, Ms. Mary Uduk, while briefing pressmen on the outcome of the first Capital Market Committee (CMC) in 2018 on Friday, noted that this trend […]

  • Borno Mosque Attack: Four killed, eight injured Sunday morning

    Four people have been killed and eight others injured in a suicide attack on a mosque in Bama Local Government Council, Borno state. The State Emergency Managment Agency (SEMA) chairman, Yabawa Kolo, confirmed the death toll on Channels Television. The incident occurred when two suicide bombers, a male and female between the ages of  13 and 14 invaded […]

  • Buhari returns to Abuja from London

    President Muhammadu Buhari has returned to Abuja after his visit to the United Kingdom, where he held bilateral talks on Nigeria – British relations and also participated in the Commonwealth Heads of Government Meeting ( CHOGM). The President on April 9 left Abuja for London after he announced his intention to seek re-election in the […]

  • World Bank jacks up share capital by $13 billion

    World Bank shareholders have approved an increase in the bank’s lending capacity  after the United States backed a reform package that curbs loans and charges more for higher income countries like China. World Bank President Jim Yong Kim said neither China nor any middle income countries was happy about the prospect of paying more for […]