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First Bank tops as Nigerian banks record lower E-business income

The FUGAZ generated a sum of N67.3 billion from electronic business during their half-year 2020.



The tier-1 banks popularly known as the FUGAZ (First Bank, UBA, Access Bank, GT Bank, and Zenith Bank) topped the list of banks with the highest e-business earnings in the first half of 2020.   

Data from their half-year 2020 financials show that the FUGAZ generated a sum of N67.3 billion from electronic business, a drop of 14.2% compared to N78.4 billion recorded in the corresponding period of 2019. 

The recent decline could be attributed to the disruption caused by the COVID-19 pandemic and a CBN policy that implemented a downward review of bank charges for various transactions. This is the first decline since we started tracking as earnings from e-business has consistently witnessed an increase over the years.

Data obtained from Nairametrics Research shows that the tier-1 banks generated a sum of N32.3 billion e-business earnings in the second half of 2017, N45.1 billion (2018), and N78.4 billion (2019) respectively before the decline in H1 2020.

GT Bank Fifth Position

The most capitalized bank in the stock market generated a sum of N4.8 billion from their electronic businesses to stand in fifth behind Zenith BankGT Bank e-business revenue declined by 32.2% from N7.14 billion generated in H1 2019 to N4.8 billion in H1 2020. Its e-business revenue accounted for 2.1% of its total revenue (N225.1 billion) generated within the period. 

Zenith Bank  – Fourth Position

Zenith Bank generated a total of N8.94 billion from e-business income in H1 2020, a 67.01% decline from N27.1 billion generated in the same period of 2019. Its e-business revenue accounted for 2.6% of the total revenue generated during the period. It should be noted that when compared to other banks, it posted the highest profit after tax of N103.8 billion during the period under review.

Access Bank  – Third Position

The largest bank in Nigeria by total assets doubled its e-business revenue from N5.5 billion recorded in H1 2019 to N13.9 billion in 2020. Access Bank recorded the highest year-on-year growth in e-business income as its N13.91 billion was 151.3% higher than the corresponding 2019 earnings.  E-business revenue generated by the bank includes fees and commissions from online purchases and bills payments.

UBASecond Position

With total e-business income of N17.93 billion, UBA moves to second place. The multinational grew its E-business revenue by 6.35% from N16.86 billion generated in the first half of 2019. E-business revenue accounted for 6% of the total revenue generated during the period (N300.6 billion). 

Apart from the UBA Mobile Banking app, the banking giant boasts of a number of electronic products such as U-Pay which allows customers to make payments at the click of a button in countries where UBA has a presence in Africa, U-Collect, on the other hand, is a consolidated internet payment gateway solution which integrates multiple payment solutions available in Nigeria such as VISA, Verve, Master Card and e-Tranzact.

First Bank – First Position

 First Bank toppled Zenith Bank to the first position, having earned N21.7 billion from e-business between January and June 2020, a marginal decrease of 0.53% compared N21.83 billion recorded in the corresponding period of 2019. Meanwhile, the bank’s e-business revenue had enjoyed consistent growth in the past years, growing by 40.8% between 2018 and 2017, and a 46.3% growth between 2019 and 2018. 

Despite being one of the oldest banks in the country, First Bank has been at the forefront of the mobile banking revolution. The bank was one of the pioneers of the USSD platform which is used to transfer money via a text messaging application of a mobile phone.

The bank also has two mobile banking apps, the FirstMobile which is like other banking apps, and FirstMonie which does not require its customers to have bank accounts to transfer money or make transactions. It also makes use of FirstBank mVisa, which allows consumers to pay for goods and services through FirstMobile by scanning a QR code or by dialing a USSD number. Other apps include; Qr Merchant and First Bank Paypal.

Stiff Fintech competition 

As earlier stated, the decline could also be attributed to the economic downturn witnessed in the country as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic and the new CBN mandated downward review of bank charges for various transactions.

Commercial banks also face stiff competition from startups are entering into the Fintech space to compete for market share with backing from venture capital and private equity firms. The influx of tech-oriented banks continues to pose a threat to revenue earned by the traditional banks from e-businesses.

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Federal High Court directs meeting to consider the transfer of GTBank into a Holding Company

A Federal High Court has directed that a meeting of the holders of GTBank Plc, be convened to consider the transfer of the bank to a holding company.



The Board of Directors and management of Guaranty Trust Bank has disclosed that the Federal High Court of Nigeria on November 6, 2020, directed that a meeting of the holders of the fully paid ordinary shares of GTBank Plc, be convened on December 4, 2020 for the purpose of considering the transfer of the bank to a holding company.

This information was conveyed through a Notice of Court-Ordered Meeting by the bank, and published on the website of the NSE. It was signed by the bank’s secretary, Erhi Obebeduo, and the Nigerian legal counsel to the bank, Aluko & Oyebode.

According to the information contained in the disclosure, the court-ordered meeting of the holders of the fully paid ordinary shares of Guaranty Trust Bank Plc to be convened for the purpose of considering and if thought fit, approving, with or without modification, a Scheme of Arrangement pursuant to Section 715 of the Companies and Allied Matters Act, 2020 between the bank and the holders of the fully paid ordinary shares of 50 Kobo each in the bank.

The meeting will be held at the Oriental Hotel, 3, Lekki Road, Victoria Island, Lagos, Nigeria, at 10:00 a.m. or soon thereafter, at which place and time the Holders are requested to attend.

Resolutions to be proposed at the meeting

The following are some of the sub-joined resolutions that will be proposed, and if thought fit, passed as special resolution at the meeting:

  • The Scheme of Arrangement dated November 4, 2020, a printed copy of which has been produced for the meeting and, signed by the Chairman be and is hereby approved.
  • In accordance with the Scheme, the 29,431,179,224 ordinary shares of 50 Kobo each in the issued and paid-up share capital of the Bank held by the shareholders be and are hereby transferred to Guaranty Trust Holding Company Plc (the Holdco) in exchange for the allotment of 29,431,179,224 ordinary shares of 50 Kobo each in the share capital of the Holdco to the shareholders in the same proportion to their shareholding in the Bank credited as fully paid without any further act or deed.
  • In accordance with the Scheme and pursuant to the prospectus issued by the Holdco, each existing holder of the Global Depositary Receipts issued by the Bank (the Existing GDRs) receive, as consideration for each existing GDR held, one new Global Depositary Receipt issued by JP Morgan Chase Bank N.A. (JP Morgan Chase), the Depositary Bank for the Holdco GDR programme (the Holdco GDRs).
  • The Board of Directors of the Bank be and is hereby authorised to take all necessary actions to delist the shares of the Bank from the official list of The Nigerian Stock Exchange.


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CBN reviews appointment requirements for CCOs in Banks

The CBN has reviewed the appointment criteria for CCOs in Merchant Banks and Regional Banks.



The Central Bank of Nigeria has reviewed the appointment criteria for Chief Compliance Officers in Merchant Banks and Regional Banks (Commercial and specialized).

This is according to a circular issued by the apex bank dated October 9, 2020, and signed by its Director of Financial Policy and Regulation Department, Kevin Amugo.

According to the latest notice, Merchant banks and Regional banks are hereby granted dispensation to appoint CCOs on a grade not below an Assistant General Managers. However, the CCOs will report directly to the ECO of the financial institutions who have sole responsibility for compliance matters in the bank.


This latest action by the CBN is the sequel to consultations and engagement with stakeholders emanating from its earlier circular referenced FPR/DIR/GEN/CIR/06/004 of September 28, 2016, in which the tentative requirements for Executive Compliance Officers and Chief Compliance Officers of deposit money banks were mooted.

Meanwhile, the requirements and responsibilities of Executive Compliance Officers remain as earlier communicated in the circular dated 28 September 2016.

A part of the recent circular signed by Mr. Kevin read thus,

“Further to the circular referenced FPR/DIR/GEN/CIR/06/004 of 28 September 2016 on the appointment of Executive Compliance Officers (ECO) and Chief Compliance Officers (CCO) of deposit money banks, the CBN has, after due considerations and presentations by stakeholders on the size, structure, operation, and dynamics of classes of operators in the sectors reviewed the requirements for the appointment of Chief Compliance Officers.”

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CBN grants Greenwich Trust Limited operational license for merchant banking

CBN has upscaled Greenwich Trust Limited to the status of a merchant bank.



The Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) has upscaled Greenwich Trust Limited and granted it, operational license for merchant banking in the country.

According to an official statement released by the firm, the entity would be known as Greenwich Merchant Bank Limited. This license allows Greenwich Merchant Bank to upscale and offer such diverse services as corporate banking, investment banking, financial advisory services, securities dealing, treasury wealth and asset management, etc., making it possible to provide increased value to stakeholders beyond its previous scope.

Recall that the minimum capital requirements for establishing a merchant bank according to Merchant Banking Licensing Regulations in 2010 are N15 billion

With the addition of Greenwich Merchant Bank, Nigeria now has six merchant banks. The others are; FBN Quest, Coronation Merchant Bank, DSH Merchant Bank, Nova Merchant Bank and Rand Merchant Bank.

About Greenwich Trust Limited

Greenwich Trust Limited is an investment banking firm duly registered with relevant authorities such as the Nigerian Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC). It is a diversified firm with subsidiaries such as Asset management, GTL Properties, GTL Securities Limited, Cedar Express Limited and Meyer Plc.

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