Finance in Nigeria is a big deal and a lot of Nigerians are keen to bank with the right Financial Institution in the West African Country.
There are lots of decisions needed to be made by these financial institutions to remain competitive and relevant in the financial marketplace.
A good number of banks have already made their mark in the unconscious mind of the average Nigerian. Some of these banks include, Access Banck, First Bank, Zenith Bank, Fidelity Bank and a host of others.
Other new digital startups have also joined the quest to build competence and trust among their targeted Nigerian customers. Some of these fintech startups and companies include, Kuda bank, Sparkle, Onebank and others.
For this article, we would be considering the top 7 Banks in Nigeria with special consideration as to which bank is the best in the country.
Zenith Bank PLC
Zenith Bank Plc was named the Best Bank in Nigeria for the second year in a row at the Global Finance Magazine Best Banks Awards 2021.
The bank was recognized with other banks from 35 African countries by the prominent US magazine Global Finance, which announced the winners of its 28th Annual Best Bank Awards in Africa.
All picks were determined following thorough consultations with corporate financial executives, bankers and banking consultants, and analysts around the world by the editors of Global Finance.
In picking these top banks, Global Finance took into account a variety of parameters ranging from the quantitative objective to the informed subjective.
Asset growth, profitability, geographic reach, strategic alliances, new business development, and product innovation were among the objective factors examined. The opinions of equities analysts, credit rating experts, banking consultants, and others active in the industry were used as subjective criteria.
The “Best Banks Awards” are regarded as the most coveted and credible awards in the banking industry by the world’s most influential banking/finance and corporate professionals, with winners chosen in 150 countries and territories across Africa, AsiaPacific, the Caribbean, Central America, Central & Eastern Europe, Latin America, the Middle East, North America, and Western Europe.
Global Finance, which was founded in 1987, chooses the best banks and other financial services companies on a yearly basis, and the awards have become a trusted standard of excellence for the global financial community.
As of the end of 2021, Zenith Bank, GT Holdings, and FBN Holdings were the most valuable banks listed on the Nigerian Stock Exchange, with market values of N789.6 billion, N765.2 billion, and N409.2 billion, respectively.
In 2021, the sector’s NGX banking index increased by 3.32 percent, falling short of the previous year’s 10.14 percent increase. Despite the sector’s importance to the stock market’s success, its contribution to total market capitalization fell from 13.9 percent in 2017 to 13.1 percent in 2021.
Meanwhile, the All-share Index grew by only 6.07 percent in 2021, compared to the over 50 percent world record rise it achieved the year before.
In Nigeria and Anglophone West Africa, Zenith Bank Plc is a major financial services company. The Central Bank of Nigeria, the country’s banking authority, has granted it a commercial banking license.
It has $16.1 billion in total assets and $854 million in shareholders’ equity as of December 31, 2019. The Nigerian Stock Exchange and the London Stock Exchange both list the company.
Guaranty Trust Bank (GTB)
Guaranty Trust Holding Company PLC, popularly known as GTCO PLC, is an international financial services business headquartered in Victoria Island, Lagos, that provides retail and investment banking, pension management, asset management, and payments services.
Guaranty Trust Bank plc became a publicly traded corporation in September 1996, and it received the Nigerian Stock Exchange President’s Merit Award that year, as well as in 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2008, and 2009.
The Bank received a universal banking license in February 2002 and was later designated as a settlement bank by the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) in 2003.
Guaranty Trust Bank PLC was reorganized into a Holding Company in July 2021, resulting in the formation of GTCO Plc.
With its reorganization, GTCO Plc will now be able to provide more services than just banking, with a payments business being a priority for the company.
It could not have operated non-lending activities under its previous structure since a 2010 regulation by the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) required banks to cease operations of its non-banking companies. Either withdraw from non-core lending services or restructure as a holdings firm was the only option.
Payments, pension management, asset management, and its existing banking operations are among its new activities. Guaranty Trust Bank Limited, GTCO’s banking affiliate in Nigeria, is the country’s most valued bank by market value, with a recent market valuation of N840.26 billion.
Guaranty Trust Holding Plc was created in 1988 as Guaranty Trust Banks by around 35 young Nigerians in their thirties, led by Tayo Aderinokun and Fola Adeola, but also including Femi Pedro, Gbolade Osibodu, Femi Akingbe, Akin Opeodu, and others.
Guaranty Trust Bank is a welcoming brand that actually cares, and it shows in every aspect of our operations. Professionalism, ethics, integrity, and exceptional customer service are key to our value system. We strive for quality and go to considerable measures to make the popular adage “The Customer Is King” a reality.
In keeping with the Bank’s brilliant Orange corporate color, our operating style, employee conduct, and service delivery methodologies are based on eight basic principles aptly termed The Orange Rules.
Access Bank, GTBank, Stanbic IBTC, Zenith Bank, Anheuser-Busch Inbev, and 20 more companies have been named among LinkedIn’s Top 25 best places to work in Nigeria for 2022. LinkedIn, a global professional network firm, revealed this.
First Bank of Nigeria
First Bank of Nigeria Limited (FirstBank) is a Nigerian international bank and financial services firm based in Lagos.
It is West Africa’s leading bank, having an impact that is woven into the fabric of society. First Bank of Nigeria Limited is a parent company in Nigeria with subsidiaries ‘FBNBank’ in the Republic of Congo, Ghana, The Gambia, Guinea, Sierra Leone, and Senegal; FBN Bank UK Limited in the United Kingdom with a branch in Paris; and a First Bank Representative Office in Beijing to capture cross-border trade. FirstBank also owns and operates Nigeria’s leading pension custodian, First Pension Custodian Nigeria Limited.
The First Bank Group’s thronging customers are served by a network of over 700 business locations spread across Africa. FirstBank has an extensive Agent Banking network with over 53,000 sites across Nigeria to promote financial inclusion and serve the unbanked.
With over 18 million customers, the Bank specializes on retail banking and has the largest client base in West Africa. The Asian Banker awarded First Bank Nigeria the Best Retail Bank in Nigeria title for eight years in a row (2011-2018).
FirstBank employs over 16,000 people and is a multiple ‘Best Place to Work’ award winner.
Retail Banking, Corporate Banking, Commercial Banking, and Public Sector Banking are its four main Strategic Business Units (SBUs).
Prior to the establishment of a non-operating Holding Company structure (FBN Holdings) in 2011/2012, it was structured as an operating holding company.
First Bank is one of Nigeria’s most respected Tier 1 banks, with a market valuation of N260.24 billion, making it the fifth most valuable bank in the country.
The Adesola Adeduntan-led bank is gaining investor confidence, with the bank’s share price showing annual returns of around 46 percent, as the brand continues to promote Nigeria’s growth and development.
With over 750 locations across continents and 100,000 Firstmonie Agents dispersed in 774 local government units in the country, the financial institution is regarded for having one of the largest networks.
First Bank of Nigeria Limited, Nigeria’s largest financial inclusion services provider, was named Private Bank of the Rear 2021 by Global Finance, the global market’s voice famous for its extensive coverage and analysis of the financial sector, worldwide business, and global economy.
Access Bank was named Private Bank of the Year for its outstanding customer service, dedication, and commitment to exceeding the Bank’s standards while offering state-of-the-art financial services to its customers, regardless of where they are in the country. Its customer service has been crucial in maintaining its customer relationships.
Access Bank’s fast growth trend continued, both organically and through acquisitions, and the bank swiftly established itself as one of Nigeria’s leading corporate banks, with a reputation for outstanding compliance, risk management, and trade finance. Following the acquisition of Intercontinental Bank in 2012, it rose to the top five banks in Nigeria and began to establish a dominant position in both retail and corporate banking.
By 2013, Access Bank had achieved S&P’s AA- rating and was ready to raise money on the global bond markets, with its first successful US$350 million Eurobond offering in July 2012. Access Bank pledged to become the world’s most successful African bank, announcing a new five-year strategy centered on financial inclusion, women and youth, as well as global trade finance, treasury, and payments for the business sector. Its eyes were focused on being a top three bank in all of the markets where it did business.
Access Bank proceeded to expand its operations across Africa and in global trade centres, keen to capture Africa’s trade flows with the rest of the world as well as within Africa. In 2017, Access Bank unveiled its five-year strategy, which centered on building a global payments infrastructure that would allow it to become Africa’s global gateway.
Access Bank’s ambitious expansion strategy included building a great retail bank that was digitally led and omni-channel, as well as consolidating its strengths in corporate banking. With the merging of Diamond Bank, Nigeria’s top retail bank with 19 million clients, including 10 million mobile users, and a strong reputation for data analytics and technology innovation, it saw an opportunity to accelerate its five-year plan in 2018.
Access Bank is now Nigeria’s largest bank and Africa’s largest bank by client base. It is a full-service commercial bank with over 600 branches and service locations spread across three continents, 12 countries, and 36 million customers. The Bank employs 28,000 employees in Nigeria, Sub-Saharan Africa, and the United Kingdom, with offices in China, Lebanon, India, and the United Arab Emirates. It continues to explore for ways to expand its worldwide trade and payment network, allowing Africa to play a more active role on the global arena.
Since being recognized as the fifth most valuable Nigerian bank in the 2017 Banking 500 study, Access Bank has shown signs of development. With a $242 million valuation, the Bank has moved up to second place.
The bank’s worth is based on its successful April 2019 merger with Diamond Bank and its recent growth into the East African market. The Bank’s nine-month post-merger financial reports revealed gross earnings of N513 billion, up 37 percent from the N375.2 billion achieved during the same period last year.
Further examination of the data revealed that the Bank’s asset base remained strong and diverse, increasing by 33% to N6.6 trillion in September 2019 from N4.95 trillion in December 2018.
Access Bank also has one of the most aggressive bad loan recovery programs in the banking industry, recovering N38.9 billion in 2019 and N24.7 billion in the first nine months of 2021. These gains trickle down to the bottom line, boosting confidence in the company’s ability to face and overcome obstacles.
UBA Bank has been delivering exceptional financial services to small businesses, corporations, governments, organizations, and individuals around the world for more than seven decades.
United Bank For Africa is a major financial services conglomerate in Nigeria and beyond Africa. The group’s financial assets were evaluated at NGN:7.7 trillion (US$19.2 billion) as of December 2020, with NGN:724.1 billion (US$1.8 billion) in shareholders’ equity.
By market capitalization, UBA is the sixth most valuable Nigerian bank. It is worth roughly N247.95 billion on the stock market.
Recent price movements indicate that investors are holding on to the Tier 1 bank’s stock, as it made N38.15 billion in profit in Q1 2021, up 26.8% from N30.1 billion in the same period last year.
UBA operates in 20 African countries: Benin, Burkina Faso, Cameroun, Congo Brazzaville, Congo DRC, Cote d’lvoire, Gabon, Ghana, Guinea, Kenya, Liberia, Mali, Mozambique, Nigeria, Senegal, Sierra Leone, Tanzania, Uganda, and Zambia. In addition to the United Kingdom and the United States of America, the Bank has a presence in France.
UBA is now one of the continent’s major financial services conglomerates.
More than 25 million customers are served by the bank, which offers corporate, commercial, SME, consumer, and personal (retail) banking services through a variety of channels, including over 1,000 business locations and customer touch points (2,669 ATMs, 87,223 PoS, robust online banking and mobile banking, social media etc).
UBA also provides pension custody and related services.
We have demonstrated knowledge and capacity in important African economy sectors such as oil and gas, infrastructure finance, agriculture, and commodity/export.
We are a preferred partner for structured solutions to key governments and corporations operating in/into Africa because of our Africa footprint.
Stanbic IBTC Plc Bank
Stanbic IBTC Plc is a Nigerian financial services business that provides retail, corporate, investment, and wealth management banking products and services. Stanbic IBTC Holdings Plc is a subsidiary of Stanbic Africa Holdings Limited, which was founded in 1989. The company’s headquarters are in Lagos, Nigeria.
Personal and Corporate Banking offers a comprehensive range of services, from transactional accounts to residential housing loans, automobile and equipment financing, and instalment financing.
Foreign exchange, fixed income, and equities trading, as well as transactional banking, corporate and property loans, and custody and trade finance services, are all available through the Corporate and Investment Banking division.
Investment management, pension management, portfolio management, unit trust/fund management, and trusteeship services are all provided by the Wealth Management division. Stanbic IBTC Holdings Plc invests in venture capital and private equity, works as an executor and trustee of wills and trusts, and provides agency, insurance brokerage, and stockbroking services, among other things.
Since November 23, 2012, Stanbic IBTC Holdings has been listed on the Nigerian Stock Exchange (NGX). The ticker sign “STANBIC” is used to trade Stanbic IBTC on the NGX. NGSTANBIC003 is the International Securities Identification Number (ISIN) for NGX:STANBIC. With a market value of NGN 431 billion, Stanbic IBTC Holdings is the 10th most valuable stock on the Nigerian Stock Exchange, accounting for 1.65% of the equity market.
Union Bank is now valued at N147 billion and trades at a price-to-earnings ratio of 5.69x. The bank has a total asset value of N2.56 trillion and a net asset value of N264 billion. Today’s share price increased by 10% as investors who learned of the purchase piled into the stock. In the last year, Union Bank has lost 5.3 percent of its value.
Nigeria’s Union Bank of Nigeria Plc is a commercial bank. Since 1917, it has operated in Nigeria.
Individuals, small and medium-sized businesses, as well as large corporations and organizations, are served by Union Bank, a significant commercial bank.
It was ranked as the 556th largest bank in the world and the 14th largest bank in Africa in July 2009. The bank’s asset base was projected to be NGN1, 381 billion (US$4.1 billion) as of March 31, 2018. At the time, the stockholders’ equity was projected to be NGN286 billion (US$851 million).
The Union Bank of Nigeria Plc is made up of the following companies:
- UBN Property Company Limited
- Union Bank United Kingdom Plc.