Vanguard (Lagos)

Kenya: UBA Commences Operation in Kenya

IN continuation of its expansion drive, United Bank for Africa Plc, the pan-African banking group has commenced operations in Kenya , the East African largest economy. The bank on Wednesday, October 7, 2009 opened its doors formally to customers in the country, having met all operational requirements of the country's apex financial regulatory body.

UBA Kenya Limited brings to twelve the number of African countries where the bank commonly referred to as " Africa 's global bank" has commenced full scale banking operations. These Countries include; Ghana, Uganda, Cameroon, Cote d'Ivoire, Liberia, Sierra Leone, Senegal, Burkina Faso, Chad and Benin. In addition, UBA has operational brand presence in seven other countries, including; Tanzania , Zambia , Gabon , Mali , Guinea Conakry, Congo Brazzaville and Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC) , bringing the total presence to 19.

Given that Kenya is the hub for East African business, "UBA Kenya will greatly facilitate trade within the East African region and generally across the continent, taking advantage of the growing presence of the bank in Africa and key financial centres of the world," said Martin Anyanwu, Group Director, Marketing and Corporate Relations.

Managing Director UBA Kenya, Mr. Manz Denga said UBA Kenya currently operates from two branches located on Enterprise Road at the Industrial Area and Westland 's branch located on the Ground floor of the Apollo Centre, on Westland 's Ring Road. "Whilst an additional branch is close to completion on the ground floor of NHIF building, Ragati Road, we have already commenced our search for suitable premises in major towns outside Nairobi, the capital city, in a bid to open more outlets" he said.

On products and service offerings, Denga said the UBA limited Kenya would offer full range of Corporate and Consumer products, with superior service, in a timely and courteous manner to Kenyans. According to him "we understand their unique needs and intend to adequately provide customized products and services to address these needs.

We are poised to bring comprehensive world-class financial services to the Kenyan market and make positive contributions to the country's economy". Liability products and trade finance services are currently on offer, while e-products, money transfer services, card and asset products will be rolled out and available to customers soon.

United Bank for Africa (UBA) Plc is one of Africa 's leading financial institutions offering banking services to more than 7 million customers across 750 branches in 19 African Countries. With presence in New York , London and Paris , UBA is connecting people and business across Africa through retail and corporate banking, innovative cross-border payments, trade finance and investment banking.

Ecobank Named African Bank of the Year

Ecobank has been named African Bank of the Year at the 2009 African Banker Awards. Ecobank won the award at this year's ceremony held at the Four Seasons Hotel in Istanbul , Turkey on October 6. The award ceremony took place alongside the 2009 World Bank Group/IMF Annual Meetings in Istanbul , and was attended by African bankers, finance ministers, central bank governors and officials of multilateral development institutions among other guests.

Receiving the award on behalf of his institution, Ecobank Group Chief Executive Arnold Ekpe said, "On behalf of the 11,000 staff of the Ecobank Group in 28 countries across the continent, I am delighted to accept this award in recognition of their hard work and continued dedication to Africa . I also want to recognize our alliance partner, Nedbank, for their impressive showing tonight, as well as other banks who have distinguished themselves in providing banking services to the people of Africa . Together, we can all make a positive impact on the economic growth of this continent."

Commenting on the resilience of many banks through the global financial and economic crisis, Omar Ben Yedder , Publisher of African Banker magazine, said, "Luck favours the prepared. Whereas banks and financial institutions of yester-years in Africa would have previously yielded and vanished in such turmoil, the banks of today with stronger capital bases and stronger regulatory bodies have suffered severe challenges, but on the whole managed to withstand these external shocks. This is undoubtedly through strong leadership, vision and sustained reform undertaken by many of the winners and nominees present here today."

Ecobank was one of several corporate sponsors of this year's event, which was organised by African Banker magazine and IC Events in partnership with BusinessinAfrica Events.

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