CBN approves Wema Bank to operate National

Six years after it restructured into a regional bank, Wema Bank Plc has upgraded its banking licence to a national banking status.

Having increased its capital base to N43.8 billion, according to the banking sector requirement, the bank was granted a final approval for the national banking licence by the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN).

In 2010, Wema Bank downscaled to operate only within its core areas of business – South South, South West, and the Federal Capital Territory (FCT), Abuja.

This has made Wema Bank the first bank to be granted a national banking licence having previously operated with a regional license.

According to the managing director and chief executive of the bank, Segun Oloketuyi, “This approval represents a milestone for the bank in the delivery of its Project LEAP commitments. Six years ago, we took a decision to refocus the bank’s operations on its areas of strength and build a sustainable institution. We took advantage of the new licencing regime and applied for a regional authorisation with a pledge to expand in the near future once the turnaround project was completed. The bank’s transformation was implemented in three phases: first to stabilise, second to prepare the building blocks for growth and third to go for growth.”

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