Nigeria’s Biggest Bank Gets Female CEO


When Access Holding Co. of Nigeria announced the appointment of Bolaji Agbede as acting group CEO following the death of Herbert Wigwe in an airplane crash in the US, it named a veteran of nearly three decades in banking and business consultancy, with a reputation for championing inclusion. It also joined 10 other Nigerian banks that are now headed by women and is the first of Nigeria’s top 10 banks to have a female CEO.

Access Holding is the parent company of Access Bank, Nigeria’s biggest lender by customer base. Previously, Agbede, whose appointment is subject to approval by the Central Bank of Nigeria, was the company’s most senior founding executive director, in charge of Business Support.

She began her professional career in 1992 with Guarantee Trust Bank, then becoming CEO of JKG, a business consultancy, in 2003.

Joining Access Bank in 2003, she rose to manage the bank’s portfolio of chemical trading companies, then served as head of Group Human Resources before becoming executive director of Business Support two years ago.

“She has a track record of successful people integration in business combination and culture transformation,” Access said in a statement.

Access operates in 21 countries on three continents and has over 65 million customers.

In 2022, it adopted a holding company structure, as many other Nigerian lenders have done, in compliance with the central bank’s regulation that they either focus on their core banking business or create a holding company to accommodate other services.    



Leave A Reply

Your email address will not be published.