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FirstBank emerges Best SME Bank at Asian Banker Awards



FirstBank has won two awards by emerging Best SME Bank in both Nigeria and Africa at the Asian Banker Global Excellence Retail Awards 2024.

FirstBank Group Head, Marketing and Corporate Communications, Ms Folake Ani-Mumuney, in a statement on Monday while expressing her delight, dedicated the two awards to the bank’s SME customers.

The Excellence in Retail Finance Awards Programme, which includes the Global Excellence in Retail Finance Awards and the Annual Digital Bank Awards recognise exceptional innovation, leadership, management and performance in the financial sector.

First Bank clinched the awards for meeting needs of medium and small enterprises and offering flexible financing options across the entire lifecycle needs of customer’s business.

Ani-Mumuney said, “We thank the Asian Banker Awards for the recognition and dedicate these awards to our esteemed SME customers that have progressively impacted the socio-economic growth of not just Nigeria but also the African continent, given their critical role as the engine of any economy.

“For 130 years, FirstBank has continued to enable the giants in our customers including our SMEs as well as other stakeholders, and we remain committed to delivering the ultimate ‘gold standard’ of value and excellence.”

She quoted the Asian Banker’s Strategic Business Intelligence for the Financial Services Community to have said “FirstBank demonstrated exceptional performance, notably in its SME sector, by achieving more than 100 per cent revenue growth while maintaining a reduced cost-to-income ratio of 16.5 per cent’’.

“Small and Medium-sized Enterprises contributed 26 per of overall bank revenue.

“Furthermore, the institution’s SME customer base grew by 7 per cent reaching a total of more than one million.

“For its significant growth in the SME business, the award for Best SME Bank in Nigeria and in Africa goes to FirstBank,” she said.

Ani-Mumuney said FirstBank supported its customers by providing exceptional value proposition around each industry sector to create best in class customer engagement.

She said the bank’s integrated platform not only helped businesses grow and reduced operational costs but also facilitated expansion into regional and overseas markets through its Sub-Saharan Africa subsidiaries.

Grace Alegba

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