Ecobank Remains Extremely Cautious in Service- Ade Ayeyemi, Ecobank CEO
Ecobank Remains Extremely Cautious in Service- Ade Ayeyemi, Ecobank CEO

Ecobank CEO, Ade Ayeyemi, has praised his team for being able to pull through the covid-19 challenging period as the bank has been able to remain focus and in business while serving its customers in the various countries as the first quarter ends.

Ade stated that the first quarter began in an unplanned manner as lots of businesses were seriously affected due to the coronavirus, but for the bank, its about serving the customers and also ensuring the safety of its employees.

“Quarter 1, 2020 was the beginning of an unprecedented, uncharted and disturbing period for businesses, governments and individuals globally, owing to the rapid spread of the coronavirus pandemic. For us, as a bank, our focus is on making sure that we can meet the needs of our customers despite the pandemic, while also ensuring their wellbeing and safety as well as those of our employees. All our countries have successfully activated our business continuity plan in line with the needs of each local environment. Through our investment in technology over the years, working from home has been seamless and indeed a pretext to a possible new normal post COVID-19.”

“As the leading pan-African bank, Ecobank embraced the call to duty with a sense of urgency. With our knowledge of Africa and its intricacies in the fight against the spread of COVID-19, we have contributed about $3 million in the form of cash, healthcare equipment and supplies, in addition to mounting sustained and robust awareness campaigns, while we are also using our digital banking platforms to provide money to some of the most vulnerable members in our communities.”

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In recognition of the effects of the pandemic on a significant sector of African businesses, MSMEs, we are further co-leading, with the African Union-NEPAD, and are actively committed to an initiative to support MSMEs with technical knowledge, mentoring, knowledge sharing and financial support, thus playing a vital role in helping their businesses survive the pandemic. “For the safety of our customers, we continue to adhere strictly to guidance from the WHO, governments, and health agencies in operating our physical locations, where they have to remain open.

“That said, our quarterly performance was resilient, again reflecting the strength of our diversified business model. We delivered $90 million in pre-tax profits, an increase of 27% if adjusted for currency translation effects, and a return on tangible shareholders’ equity of 17.1%. We are managing impairment losses prudently, and as a result, our cost-of-risk increased to 1.5%, versus 0.5% in the prior-year quarter.”

“Operating conditions will be extraordinarily challenging in the coming months, as the duration and severity of COVID-19 on Africa remains uncertain. While the G-20 has decided to freeze bilateral loan repayments for most African countries until the end of the year, the World Bank is still forecasting a continent-wide recession. Thus, we are extremely cautious and are taking the necessary actions to ensure that our firm remains stable and continues to serve our customers efficiently, effectively, and safely, while preparing for a new era of banking post COVID-19” Finally, I would like to thank all Ecobankers for their hard work and dedication to serving our customers during these difficult times, and our customers for their continued loyalty to our brand.” Ayeyemi concluded.

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