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75th Anniversary: UBA sets for N500bn recapitalisation to boost Nigeria’s $1trn economy

UBA

By Motolani Oseni

United Bank for Africa (UBA) has announced plans to seek shareholders’ approval this Friday for its N500 billion recapitalisation.

This move is in line with the Central Bank of Nigeria’s (CBN) efforts to strengthen the banking sector, a crucial step towards achieving the Nigerian government’s $1 trillion economic goal.

During a global press conference marking the launch of UBA’s 75th-anniversary celebrations in Lagos, on Monday, Group Managing Director of UBA, Oliver Alawuba, commended the CBN’s recapitalisation initiative.

He highlighted its importance in making the banking sector more robust and capable of significantly contributing to Nigeria’s economic growth.

Alawuba emphasised that the recapitalisation would enhance the liquidity of Nigerian banks, enabling them to compete globally and support intra-African trade.

Assuring stakeholders of UBA’s readiness to meet the recapitalisation requirements, Alawuba stated that the bank would not pursue acquisitions unless they add substantial value. Instead, UBA will focus on expanding its international operations and supporting Small and Medium Enterprises (SMEs) across the countries it operates in.

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“Today, we have over 25,000 staff and serve over 35 million customers through multiple channels – over 350,000 POS terminals, 2,000 ATM terminals, 1,000 business offices, and 19.7 million card customers,” Alawuba noted, emphasising the bank’s extensive reach and capacity.

In addition, Alawuba reiterated UBA’s commitment to a $6 billion SME funding agreement with the African Free Trade Area (AfCFTA). This funding, sourced from deposits and Development Finance Institutions (DFIs), aims to increase the financial capacity of businesses across Africa, particularly in the 20 countries where UBA operates.

“Our vision is clear: to be the role model for African businesses and connect Africa to the world and the world to Africa,” he said. The fund will help businesses grow and enhance their capacity as foreign exchange generators for their countries.

Speaking on the 75-year anniversary, Alawuba reflected on UBA’s resilience and financial strength amidst economic challenges.

He attributed the bank’s recent performance to robust fundamentals and strategic decisions. UBA remains committed to innovation, digital transformation, and Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR), with initiatives focused on education, healthcare, entrepreneurship, and environmental sustainability.

“Our primary focus is to be the payment bank for capital flows, trade, and investments between Africa and the rest of the world. We are committed to expanding our presence, seizing growth opportunities, and delivering value to all stakeholders,” Alawuba stated.

Deputy Managing Director, Muyiwa Akinyemi added: “At UBA, innovation and digital transformation are central to our future growth. We are dedicated to enhancing customer experience and solidifying our position as a forward-thinking institution committed to global sustainability principles and impactful CSR initiatives across Africa.”

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