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Bank unveils South-West expansion plan


Okonkwo has been the Chief Executive Officer and Managing Director Fidelity Bank

Okonkwo has been the Chief Executive Officer and Managing Director Fidelity Bank

Fidelity Bank Plc has unveiled plans to rapidly expand its presence in Oyo, Ogun, Osun, Ekiti, Ondo and Kwara states in a move aimed at deepening penetration in the geographical zone and serve more customers.

As a start, the bank said it is targeting 15-branch openings and the strengthening of its electronic banking channels in the listed states in the next two years.

The Managing Director/Chief Executive Officer, Fidelity Bank, Nnamdi Okonkwo, who made the disclosure during the bank’s regional conference titled: “Positioning SMEs for Growth in the South-west Region,” held in Ibadan, said the bank’s direction is part of its organic growth strategy.

If you recall, we made a bid for two banks last year, which the Asset Management Corporation of Nigeria (AMCON) offered for sale, but we did not suceed. But part of our strategic intent was to strengthen our play in the South-western region of the country. One of the banks we went for had a legacy bank that was very strong in the region.
“So, our plan ‘B’ was that should we not suceed, we would then activate organic growth in the South-West. If you look at the type of human resources we have in the region,  we deliberately went to the market to recruit those who understand the region better because we have seen the potential.
“So, we are going to drive that strategy over the next two years. Not just in terms of brick and mortar, our electronic channels are also going to be strengthened to support what we are doing physically,” he added.

According to Oknkwo, the regional conference was to empower aspiring and young entrepreneurs, providing opportunities for owners of small businesses to share their experience in terms of their failures, pains and how they eventually emerged.

The Fidelity Bank boss assured that the lender would encourage fledgling entrepreneurs, nurture and grow them success.
The Governor of Oyo State, Senator Abiola Ajimobi, who was represented by his Deputy, Chief Moses Alake Adeyemo, noted that small businesses play pivotal roles in economic development and commended the bank for facilitating the conference.

The contemporary realities of the Nigerian economy largely occasioned by its over-dependence on oil have made it instructive for development partners in all tiers of governent to appreciate the urgent need to diversify the economy and stimulate the real sector towards enhancing its contribution to the national Gross Domestic Product and foreign exchange earnings,” Adeyemo said.

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