The New GMD, Zenith Bank Asthe new Group Managing Director (GMD)/ Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of Zenith Bank Plc, Mr. Ebenezer Onyeagwu resumes office on June 1st, some shareholders have expressed optimism that the bank under his tenure would attract more investment and positive growth following his wealth of experience in the banking sector.
Zenith Bank Plc had in April announced the appointment of Mr. Onyeagwu as the new GMD/CEO to lead one of Nigeria’s strongest and most profitable banks.
Mr. Michael Osilama Otu, Company Secretary and General Counsel in a regulatory disclosure said the appointment is consistent with the Bank’s tradition and succession strategy of growing leaders from within.
In separate reactions however, the shareholders maintained that Onyeagwu will excel in his new assignment because he has been part of the success story in the bank over the years, adding that Zenith Bank is very safe in his hands.
Speaking to Daily Champion on his agenda for the new GMD, National Coordinator, Progressive Shareholders Association of Nigeria, Mr. Boniface Okezie said, “My agenda for him is to continue with the good works the bank has been doing over the years in the area of enhanced dividends pay out so that the price of the bank shares will continue to soar high by the day in the stock market.
“He should also make sure that the bank continues to lift other sectors of the economy by financing agricultural businesses which the bank has not been lagging behind in the past. I have no doubt that Mr. Ebenezer Onyeagwu will excel in his new assignment,” he said.
“We will see him grow the bank in terms of opening more branches in areas where the bank’s presence is yet to be felt. He must make sure that Zenith Bank is located in every part of the country and beyond. Also, workers welfare should be well looked into and improved upon”, he stated.
In his view, National President, Constance Shareholders Association of Nigeria, Shehu Mallam Mikail maintained that it is the desire of shareholders that the new boss should ensure that none of the bank’s operations attracts any sanction or penalty from the industry regulators.
He said, “Zenith Bank is a solid financial institution in Nigeria with a well packaged succession plan, coupled with dividend policy plans which have made the institution to be investors’ delight. I believe the new GMD will keep the tempo and at the same time improve the dividend policy of the bank.
“We will like the new GMD to also ensure that the bank does not attract any penalty from the regulatory authorities so as to make the bank more liquid”.
Before his appointment, Mr. Onyeagwu had been the bank’s deputy managing director since October 2016 and spent 17 years working with Zenith Bank.
The new CEO began his career at the defunct Financial Merchant Bank in 1991 and later held several management positions in the erstwhile Citizens International Bank Limited until 2002 when he joined Zenith Bank.
Mr. Onyeagwu started his career as a senior manager in the Internal Control and Audit Group of the bank and by 2005 had become an assistant general manager.
He is an alumnus of the prestigious University of Oxford, England, from where he obtained a Postgraduate Diploma in Financial Strategy, and Certificate in macroeconomics.
He also undertook extensive executive-level Business Education in Wharton Business School of the University of Pennsylvania, Columbia Business School of Columbia University and the Harvard Business School, all in the United States, as well as Lagos Business School of the Pan Africa University, Nigeria.
Onyeagwu is a graduate of Accounting at Auchi Polytechnic and A Fellow of the Institute of Chartered Accountants of Nigeria (ICAN).
By COMFORT EKELEME, Assistant Business Editor, champion newspaper online