Jeremy Awori heads to West Africa after exiting Absa – Business Daily
Jeremy Awori. FILE PHOTO | NMG
Absa Bank chief executive Jeremy Awori is likely heading to West Africa with the market signalling he would be tapped by a Lome-based pan-Africa lender.
Sources within the West African lender have confirmed Mr Awori is headed to the lender without divulging details of his role since the matter is yet to be finalised.
With operations in 35 African countries, the lender is a leading independent regional banking group with an asset base of Sh3.3 trillion ($27.5 billion) and more than 32 million customers across the continent.
Mr Awori is exiting Absa Bank where he has spent the last 10 years on a permanent contract.
The Absa boss has helped the bank to achieve significant commercial milestones over the past decade including the rebranding of the lender.
Barclays Africa, which rebranded to Absa, was among the first banks to introduce ATMs in Kenya but was among the last to start dispensing cash over mobile phones through its Timiza platform.
Under Mr Awori, the bank has made a deliberate shift toward digital banking and has committed to investing billions in digitisation, automation and innovation.
The lender launched its 24-hour virtual assistant dabbed Abby that will help customers to facilitate transactions and customise experience.
Mr Awori said the lender plans to further diversify revenues by increasing investment in areas it has limited presence, including asset management, consumer payments, custody business and investment banking with an eye on advisory, mergers and acquisitions.
The West African lender will be leveraging Mr Awori’s experience in the Barclays Bank exit from Africa and operations in Kenya’s digital banking ecosystem to drive growth.
By going digital Kenyan banks have tapped the grassroots, a step that is earning the lenders higher returns than their West African peers who are still chasing corporate C-suites.