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Fidelity Bank’s Amazon: Onyeali-Ikpe mounts the saddle as pioneer woman MD/CEO

Fidelity Bank Plc has witnessed constant growth in financial performance in recent years, emerging as one of the fastest-growing and trusted bank brands in the country.

Fidelity Bank opened for business in the New Year 2021 with Nneka Onyeali-Ikpe, as chief managing director and chief executive officer, the first woman to mount the saddle in the bank over three-decade history.

Onyeali-Ikpe joins the outstanding tribe of woman MD/CEOs of Nigerian banks, including Funke Osibodu, Union Bank; Suzanne Iroche, FinBank Plc; Bola Adesola, Standard Chartered Bank, Nigeria and West Africa; Sola David-Borha, StanbicIBTC and Oluwatomi Somefun, Unity Bank.

She is leading the team to consolidate on Fidelity Bank’s achievements and execute the bank’s next growth phase.

Some of the Fidelity Bank’s performance statistics showed that it recorded growth of 236 per cent in profit before tax growth from N9 billion to N30.4 billion in 2019 and grew its customer deposits by 68 per cent from N806.3 billion to N1.35 trillion.

The bank is noted for its consistency in promoting the development and competitiveness of Micro Small Medium Enterprises (MSMEs) while ranking sixth amongst Nigerian banks on most performance indices.

Mrs. Onyeali-Ikpe’s appointment as chief executive officer-designate was first announced in July 2020 after the approval by the bank’s Board of Directors and the Central Bank of Nigeria, CBN. She effectively took over from Mr Nnamdi Okonkwo from 1st of January 2021.

Onyeali-Ikpe moved up to the driver’s seat from her last position as the executive director, Lagos and South-west Directorate of the bank.

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She joined Fidelity Bank in 2015 and steered the transformation of the directorate, leading it to profitability and sustained its impressive year-on-year growth across key performance metrics, including contributing over 28% of the bank’s profit before tax, deposits and loans.

Mrs Onyeali-Ikpe has put into her accomplishment in Fidelity Bank over three-decade experience amassed from different banks, including Standard Chartered Bank Plc, Zenith Bank Plc and Citizens International Bank/Enterprise Bank, where she held management positions in legal, treasury, investment banking, retail/commercial banking and corporate banking.

She had also been involved in the structuring of complex transactions in various sectors including oil and gas; manufacturing, aviation, real estate and export.

As an executive director at legacy Enterprise Bank Plc, she received a formal commendation from the Asset Management Corporation of Nigeria (AMCON), as a member of the management team that successfully turned around Enterprise Bank Plc.

Mrs. Onyeali-Ikpe is a graduate of the University of Nigeria, Nsukka where she bagged a Bachelor of Laws (LLB) degree. She also holds a Master of Laws (LLM) degree from Kings College, London and has attended executive training programmes at notable global institutions including Harvard Business School; The Wharton School University of Pennsylvania; INSEAD School of Business; Chicago Booth School of Business; London Business School and IMD.

Onyeali-Ikpe also recently attended the Said Business School, Oxford University, the UK for Diploma programme in Organisational Leadership.

She is married to seasoned advertising and communication expert, Dr. Ken Onyeali Ikpe, and the Group Chief Executive Officer of INSIGHT REDEFINI GROUP, Sub-Saharan Africa’s biggest Marketing Communication & Advertising Group.