First Bank

Friday, July 28, 2023

UBA Improves Staff Welfare in Quick Response to Rising Cost of Living


Africa’s Global Bank, United Bank for Africa (UBA) Plc, has reaffirmed its commitment to prioritise the welfare of its staff and their families reflecting the current economic realities and its impact on living conditions.

To this end, the bank’s Board of Directors have announced the implementation of a cost of living adjustment for its staff effective immediately

The bank said that over the past few months, it has been closely monitoring the effect of the rising cost of living on its employees and recognises the importance of addressing these challenges proactively.

It is interesting to note that even when the bank had previously implemented a cost of living adjustment for staff on October 1, 2021 and more recently on April 1, 2023, the persistent economic challenges faced by employees and the broader society as a whole, informed the unanimous decision to again implement another adjustment.

Friday, July 21, 2023

N7.9bn Fraud: Finally, EFCC Arraigns Stella Oduah, Eight Others


The  Economic and Financial Crimes Commission EFCC, today, July 21, 2023,  arraigned Stella Adaeze Oduah, a former minister of Aviation before  Justice I.E. Ekwo of the Federal High Court Maitama, Abuja on a 25-count  charge bordering on money laundering. She was docked alongside three others: Gloria Odita, Nwobu Emmanuel Nnamdi and Irene Chukwuma and five companies -  Global Offshore And Marine Limited, Tiptop Global Resources  Limited, Crystal Television Limited, Sobora International Limited, and  China Civil Engineering Construction Corporation.

Count one of the charge reads, “that you, Stella Adaeze Oduah whilst being the Minister of Aviation, Federal Republic of Nigeria, Gloria Odita,  whilst being the Company Secretary to Sea Petroleum & Gas Company  Ltd (SPGC) and an aide to the former Minister of Aviation, Nwobu  Emmanuel Nnamdi, whilst being an employee of Sea Petroleum & Gas  Company Ltd (SPGC) and an aide to the former Minister of Aviation,  Chukwuma Irene Chinyere, Global Offshore And Marine Limited, Tiptop  Global Resources Limited, Crystal Television Limited, Sobora  International Limited between January 2014 and April 2014 at Abuja within the judicial division of this Honourable Court did conspire among yourselves to commit an offence to wit: ‘Money Laundering’ and thereby committed an offence contrary to Section 18(a) of the Money Laundering  (Prohibition) Act 2011 (As Amended) and punishable under Section 15(3)  and (4) of the same Act”.

Togo, Benin, Niger owe Nigeria $18.29mn for electricity consumed in 2022

Togo, Benin, Niger owe Nigeria $18.29mn for electricity consumed in 2022. Nigeria's International electricity customers-Togo, Benin and Niger failed to remit $18.29 million for electricity consumed, as total value of electricity exported stood at $50.9million (N23.5 billion) in 2022.

Things Get Tougher For Eco Bank CEO, Bolaji Lawal

The job of Bolaji Lawal, the Bank Chief Executive Officer earnestly looking forward to prove his mettle has gotten tougher

From eyeing N13.5Billion payout to boost operations, the financial institution he oversees is now staring at a N72.2 Billion debt.

That is the story of the Chief Executive Officer at Eco Bank.

Lawal officially took up the career defining appointment as Chief Executive Officer at the Bank whose official name is Ecobank Transnational Inc (ETI) on March 1, 2022 after missing out of becoming the Managing Director at Guaranty Trust Bank (GTBank).the previous year. 

The Eco Bank job was touted as the perfect opportunity to show his former employers they were wrong in letting him go.

Friday, July 14, 2023

Shell alleges Benedict Peters’ Aiteo owes $2.6 billion in oil loans

Aiteo Eastern E&P Company Limited, a leading indigenous oil exploration firm founded by Nigerian billionaire oil mogul Benedict Peters in 2013, has found itself embroiled in a mounting debt crisis.

According to recent disclosures by the Nigerian subsidiary of British multinational oil company Shell Plc and seven local banks, the energy company owes a staggering $2.6 billion in oil-related loans.

This figure represents an increase of $910 million compared to its 2022 figure of $1.7 billion when Shell Plc initially reported the outstanding loans.

The lenders and Aiteo have been locked in a legal dispute since late 2019, when the creditors notified the company of its default.

The $2.6 billion debt can be traced back to Aiteo’s acquisition of a pipeline and operating interest in a highly valuable onshore oil block eight years ago.

Thursday, July 13, 2023

Jim Ovia reaps $21.9 million in 26 days from Zenith Bank stake

Jim Ovia, Nigeria’s wealthiest banker, has seen a significant increase in the market value of his stake in Zenith Bank, the country’s most profitable banking group, as he recovers from earlier declines caused by the devaluation of the Nigerian naira.

A key figure in the evolution and digital transformation of Nigeria’s banking industry, Ovia founded Zenith Bank in 1990.

His 16.2-percent stake in the financial services group, comprising 5,072,104,311 ordinary shares, has propelled him into the ranks of Nigeria’s wealthiest businessmen.

Over the past 26 days, Ovia’s stake in Zenith Bank has experienced a notable rise in value, resulting in a staggering increase of N17.01 billion ($21.9 million). This can be attributed to the bump in the bank’s shares on the Nigerian Exchange.

Wednesday, July 12, 2023

Dozy Mmobuosi allegedly running fraudulent company — Hindenburg Research

Tingo Group, the Fintech and Agri-Fintech group founded by Nigerian businessman Dozy Mmobuosi, has been described by Hindenburg Research as a fraudulent enterprise. 

Hindenburg Research, the short investor whose reports on businesses have wiped out a large portion of their value, announced a short position in Tingo Group, sending shares of the fintech down more than 50 percent on Tuesday.

The short seller claimed that the company faked its financials and questioned founder Dozy Mmobuosi’s claims of developing “Nigeria’s first mobile payment app.”

Tingo Group, which was established in New Jersey, has operations in Africa, Southeast Asia, and the Middle East, and its subsidiaries span agri-fintech, food processing, and insurance broking.

American-Nigerian mogul Sam Darwish’s IHS dragged to court by French firm Wendel

Telecom infrastructure giant IHS Holding, led by American-Nigerian mogul Sam Darwish, is currently embroiled in a legal conflict with French investment group Wendel SE. The legal dispute arises from a standoff between the two parties over the management of the firm.

Through its subsidiary Oranje-Nassau Developpement SCA FIAR, Wendel SE, which holds an 18.8-percent stake in IHS, is seeking to compel the tower company to hold a vote on several governance proposals that were not put forward during the June shareholders meeting.

This development has prompted legal action, with a summons issued by the Grand Court of the Cayman Islands on June 30.

According to the court document, Wendel SE alleges that IHS breached section 8 of the shareholders’ agreement by failing to notify all shareholders of the proposed resolutions and failing to present them for a vote at the Annual General Meeting (AGM).

Ecobank moves to seize Nigerian tycoon Oba Otudeko’s FBN shares over $17-million debt

Ecobank, a West African financial services group, is pursuing the acquisition of shares recently obtained by Nigerian tycoon Oba Otudeko in FBN Holdings due to his indebtedness to the bank.

Otudeko and his affiliated companies owe Ecobank over NGN13.5 billion ($17.1 million).

In 2017, Ecobank Nigeria Limited filed several lawsuits against Otudeko and his companies, including Honeywell Group Limited, Siloam Global Services Limited, Anchorage Leisures Limited, and Honeywell Flour Mills, at the Federal High Court in Lagos.

These legal actions aimed to recover the companies’ debts to the bank. Otudeko had personally guaranteed the loans, resulting in the companies’ indebtedness.

Despite Otudeko and his companies disputing their debts, the Supreme Court affirmed their indebtedness in January of this year. The court’s judgment ordered them to repay all outstanding debts

Tuesday, July 11, 2023

UI First Class Graduate, Opuofoni Ebimotimi beaten to death for stealing bread in Bayelsa

In a deeply distressing incident that has shocked the nation, Opuofoni Freeborn Ebimotimi, a first-class graduate from the University of Ibadan, was mercilessly killed by a mob in the early hours of today in Honeyhill, Tombia, Bayelsa State. The reason behind this brutal act? Allegedly, the theft of a loaf of bread.

Hailing from the Korokorosei community in Southern Ijaw Local Government area, Opuofoni Freeborn Ebimotimi had recently completed his studies in Business Administration (B.Sc) at UI. His promising academic achievements and bright future were abruptly cut short in a horrifying turn of events.

Monday, July 10, 2023

How Tony Elumelu’s wife, Awele, purchased 7.3 million Transcorp shares

 In a strategic move that further solidifies her family’s influence in the Nigerian business landscape, Awele Elumelu, the accomplished healthcare executive and wife of renowned businessman Tony

Elumelu, has acquired an additional 7.3 million shares in Transnational Corporation of Nigeria (Transcorp).

This follows her recent purchase of a $14-million stake in the Lagos-based conglomerate, propelling her to become one of its largest shareholders.

According to a notification of share dealings published on Tues., June 13, Awele Elumelu completed the acquisition of 7,309,813 shares in six separate transactions on the Nigerian Exchange on June 5, amounting to a cash consideration of N21.9 million ($46,100).

With this latest acquisition, Awele Elumelu’s total holdings in Transcorp have reached an impressive 2,070,794,804 shares, consolidating her family’s position within the conglomerate.

This move aligns with her husband’s previous decision to increase his stake to more than 30 percent, following the acquisition of shares by leading Nigerian billionaire Femi Otedola.

Awele Elumelu’s prominence extends beyond her investments, as she has made significant contributions to the healthcare sector. Serving as the chairperson of Avon Healthcare Limited and the CEI of Avon Medical Services Limited, she exhibits exemplary leadership and expertise in medicine, surgery, pediatrics, obstetrics and gynecology, and emergency medicine.

Her career highlights include valuable contributions to the prestigious Lagos University Teaching Hospital, as well as international experience at Grantham and District Hospital in the United Kingdom.

With this latest development, Awele Elumelu’s increasing influence in Transcorp not only highlights her business acumen but also serves as a testament to the Elumelu family’s commitment to driving growth and making a lasting impact on Nigeria’s business landscape.

Sunday, July 9, 2023

In a roadside welding shop in Nigeria’s commercial capital Lagos, Shola Ojo gives his power generating set a second pull before the engine revved up, now he is ready to start his business for the day.

All around him are unfinished metal doors and gates that he now has to work on for almost double the cost since new President Bola Tinubu scrapped a fuel subsidy, sharply driving up the cost of petrol.

The 50 year old welder and father of 3, gets little or no power supply from the national grid and is fully dependent on his petrol power generating set, which he now has to spend more on as gasoline prices nearly tripled on May 31.

Wednesday, July 5, 2023

Zenith Bank Retains The Top Spot As Nigeria’s Number One Bank By Tier-1 Capital For Fourteen Straight Years In The 2023 Top 1000 World Banks Ranking


Zenith Bank Plc has retained its ranking as the Number One Bank in Nigeria by Tier-1 Capital in the 2023 Top 1000 World Banks’ Rankings, published by The Banker Magazine. For the fourteenth year in a row, the Bank has held its position as the number one Tier-1 bank in Nigeria, emerging as the 467th Bank globally with a Tier-1 Capital of $2.54 billion.

The rankings, published in the July 2023 edition of The Banker Magazine of the Financial Times Group, United Kingdom, were based on the 2022 year-end Tier-1 capital of banks globally. The rankings continue to be the primary source for global bank financials and are used by most international organisations in their assessments of banks.

Zenith Bank’s financial performance for the year was bolstered by an impressive double-digit growth of 24% in gross earnings, leading to an improved market share in both the retail and corporate segments of the market. This occurred despite a persistently challenging macroeconomic environment and headwinds.

Sunday, July 2, 2023

Ebenezer Onyeagwu Emerges Best Banking Ceo Of The Year In Africa In The International Banker Awards 2023


The Group Managing Director/Chief Executive Officer of Zenith Bank Plc, Dr. Ebenezer Onyeagwu, has been named ‘Best Banking CEO of the Year in Africa’ in the International Banker 2023 Banking Awards. The award, published in the Spring 2023 Issue of the International Banker Magazine, sees Dr Onyeagwu honoured alongside other individuals and banks from the Middle East and Africa.

Expressing gratitude for the recognition, Dr. Onyeagwu commended the Publishers of the International Banker for considering him a fitting recipient of the ‘Best Banking CEO of the Year in Africa’ award. He stated, “This award reflects the bank’s position as a leading financial institution in Nigeria and the African continent. It also attests to our commitment to principles of sustainability and high ethical standards, which have become integral to our overall strategy as an institution”.