For driving agribusiness and the expansion of non-oil exports in the country, Fidelity Bank Plc is LEADERSHIP Bank of the Year 2021
Fidelity Bank Plc is popular in the Nigerian economy for its interest in export promotion and drive for a savings culture. The bank, which has an international banking licence, has an asset base of N3.11 trillion as of June 30, 2021, a figure that has more than doubled compared to an asset base of N1.29 trillion it had in 2016.
The bank’s passion for increasing non-oil exports in the country is reflected on its Export Management Programme (EMP), a capacity development programme it runs in collaboration with the Lagos Business School and the Nigerian Export Promotion Council (NEPC). Targeted at growing the capacity of small businesses in the country, the programme has trained hundreds of individuals and businesses since its inception.
The EMP, which is open to both aspiring and experienced exporters, is an intense and hands-on export management education designed to equip Nigerian exporters, regulators, financiers and policymakers with the practical knowledge and business management skills required to compete effectively in the global export market.
The bank is one of the few financial institutions in the country that has continued to build up its loan book, as total loans to customers grew by 113.7 per cent in the course of five years despite the nation’s economic recession and the COVID-19 pandemic.
Its drive for a savings culture has seen it build up its deposit base, which was N792.79 billion in 2016, by almost 150 per cent to N1.98 trillion as of June 30, 2021, while its profit base continues to rise. The bank has over the years built strong partnerships across the broad spectrum of economic actors in the agribusiness space to drive agribusiness financing interventions to micro and last-mile levels.
It leveraged strategic partnerships with the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) and development finance institutions (DFIs) under various industry-targeted intervention funding programmes to enhance access to credits to eligible players in the agribusiness and non-oil exports space.
Operators, funding partners and all other actors in the agribusiness space have continued to recognize Fidelity Bank’s activities. At the Bankers’ Committee meeting of December 2019, the bank was awarded second position in Sustainable Agriculture Transactions of the Year.
The bank also recently joined the league of gender-inclusive financial institutions with a woman at the helm of its affairs: Mrs. Nneka Onyeali-Ikpe was on January 1, 2021, appointed the first female managing director of the bank.