CBN approves licence for Development Bank with N398.45bn seed fund

*Central Bank of Nigeria.

…As Finance Ministry Announces DBN Management, Board Members

Oscarline Onwuemenyi

31 March 2017, Sweetcrude, Abuja – The Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) has approved a licence for the Development Bank of Nigeria (DBN) with $1.3 billion as seed capital, the Minister of Finance, Mrs. Kemi Adeosun said yesterday.

The ministry, which is the chief promoter of the financial powerhouse, revealed yesterday in a statement that the CBN approved the grant of a Wholesale Development Finance Institution Licence with national authorisation to the Development Bank of Nigeria (DBN) Plc.

The operation of the Development Bank of Nigeria is clearly distinct from other development banks as it is focused on supporting small businesses defined by size and not by sectors.

Meanwhile, the Federal Ministry of Finance on has announced details of members of the board and management of the newly licensed Development Bank of Nigeria (DBN).

The Management team is led by Mr. Tony Okpanachi, a banker and erstwhile Deputy Managing Director/Deputy CEO, Ecobank Nigeria Limited.

Before his appointment as Managing Director/CEO of Development Bank of Nigeria, he was the Deputy Managing Director of Ecobank Nigeria Limited.

Prior to that, he was the Managing Director, Ecobank Kenya and Cluster Managing Director for East Africa (comprising Kenya, Uganda, Tanzania, Burundi, Rwanda, South Sudan and Ethiopia).

He was also at various times Managing Director of Ecobank Malawi and Regional Coordinator for Lagos and South West of Ecobank Nigeria.

A seasoned Banker with over 26 years’ experience, He holds a Master degree in Business Administration (MBA) from Manchester Business School UK and a Master of Science degree in Economics from University of Lagos.

Mr. Okpanachi will be supported by the Chief Financial Officer, Mrs. Ijeoma Ozulumba and Chief Risk Officer, Mr. Olu Adegbola.

The Board members include Chairman, Dr. Shehu Yahaya (who was the interim MD of DBN and former Executive Director, AfDB); Managing Director/Chief Executive, Nigeria Sovereign Investment Authority, Uche Orji and Mohammed Kalif, of the African Development Bank.

Independent Directors of the DBN are former Group Managing Director/CEO of United Bank for Africa (UBA), Mr. Philips Oduoza; President and CEO, African Finance Corporation, Mr. Andrew Alli; Chairman, FBN Merchant Bank, Alhaji Bello Maccido; Founder/Managing Director, JNC International Limited, Mrs Clare Omatseye and the Managing Director, CEO Excel Professional Service Limited, Mr. Oladimeji Alo.

The Finance Ministry had on Wednesday received notice from the regulator that it was free to commence operations of the Micro, Small, and Medium Enterprise (MSME) focused Development Bank of Nigeria.

Speaking at a recent strategy retreat involving the management team, board members, and other key stakeholders of DBN in attendance, the Minister of Finance, Mrs. Kemi Adeosun reaffirmed the importance of the DBN’s mandate and assured them of the public sector support needed to ensure the DBN’s success.

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