Gone were the days when Nigerian banks were just square/rectangular boxes where you go to endure the tyranny of the dreadful queue and long downtime before you can withdraw or deposit money. These days, banks are able to exude an air of magnificence and royal elegance with their architectural edifices. The stately buildings in turn make put people in awe of the bank and keep them rest assured that the bank is the best place to keep their money. But care should be taken here, it is not the architectural masterpiece that makes the bank great but the board of management and method of service delivery.
All banks might be equal, but some are ‘more equal’ than others are, and the feat of outperformance recorded by some Nigerian banks is worthy of commendation today. This is not an advert for any bank or an attempt to undermine the credibility of any bank, but we cannot shy away from stating the truth just because we do not want to sound patronizing.
A new banking report has shown that four Nigerian banks are among the top 500 banks globally. The Nigerian banks that make the list are Access Bank Plc, Guarantee Trust Bank, Zenith Bank Plc and First Bank of Nigeria Limited.
The banking report, which was written by The Banker In conjunction with Brand Finance and The Financial Times; all based in the United Kingdom places the aforementioned Nigerian banks in the annual 2015 Top 500 Banking Brands.
According to the report, First Bank moved up the ranks from number 382 in 2014 to number 336 in 2015. Zenith Bank moved up the ranks from number 453 in 2014 to number 388 this year. GT Bank climbed modestly from number 422 in 2014 to number 417 this year. Access Bank is the new kid on the banking bloc as the bank makes its first appearance in the list.
According to the report, the first 10 banks in the world are Well Fargo (USA); ICBC (China); HSBC (UK); China Construction Bank; Citibank, Bank of America, Chase (USA); Agricultural Bank of China; Bank of China; and Santander (Spain). Making the list of the top 500 banks globally is no small feat, considering the large number of banks in the African continent alone, not to mention the banks operating from Asia, Europe and the Americas. Hence, I am impressed that 4 Nigerian banks could make the list.
The fact that these Nigerian banks make the list of top 500 global banks suggests that they are doing something akin to what’s obtainable in developed countries. These banks must have met the highest international standards and you may want to think about that achievement when next you want to make a decision on the bank to patronize.