In the early 1990s, the Nigerian banking industry comprised majorly of these four banks: Union Bank, First Bank, UBA and Afribank. The Nigerian banking industry has undergone many changes. One of which is the banking reform of 2004 which focused on bank consolidation through the mechanism of merger and acquisition. One of the effects of this is the rebasing of commercial banks from ₦2 billion to ₦25 billion. This means that banks had to have an initial capital of ₦25 billion before it can begin operations. At the time, there were 89 existing commercial banks in the country and then the numbers dropped to 25. This article brings you the newest banks in the Nigerian banking industry and their histories.
10 Newest Banks in Nigeria
Read on below:
Titan Trust bank
In 2019, the Central bank of Nigeria licensed three new banks one of which is the Titan trust bank. The Titan trust bank will operate as a commercial bank with national recognition.
Globus Bank was granted regional authorization and was duly licensed by the Central bank of Nigeria on the 6th of March, 2019. It was incorporated as a limited liability company and duly licensed to provide commercial banking services. The bank aims to be the leading bank in using technology in delivering value to its customers.
Non-interest banks in Nigeria
Non-Interest banks are those who operate on principles such as:
- Prohibition of interest in debt and exchange contracts
- Prohibition of any form of gambling
Jaiz Bank Plc
Jaiz Bank is a non-interest bank which operates under Islamic banking principles. It is the first non-interest bank established in Nigeria in the year 2003. It has its headquarters in Abuja.
In 2019, Taj bank limited was licensed by the Central bank of Nigeria to function as a non-interest bank.
The roots of Heritage banks can be traced back to the late 1970s. At this time, the bank was founded as Societe Generale Bank Nigeria by the late Dr. Olusola Saraki.
In January 2006, the Central Bank closed down Societe Generale Bank because the bank was not able to meet the new minimum capital requirements of 25 billion naira for a National Bank. However, the banks challenged the action of the Central bank in court. In December 2012, CBN re-issued the bank’s license, but as a regional bank. Having acquired the banking license, the new ownership of Societe Generale Bank then re-branded the bank and changed its name to Heritage Banking Company Limited. Heritage bank was opened for business on the 4th of March 2013
Keystone Bank Limited
Keystone Bank Limited was issued a commercial banking license by the Central Bank of Nigeria on Friday 5 August 2011. CBN also revoked the banking license of Bank PHB on the same day. Keystone Bank then assumed the assets and some liabilities of the now-defunct Bank PHB.
Polaris Bank Limited
The history of Polaris bank can be traced back to 1989 when Prudent Bank Plc., was incorporated as a limited liability company. A year after, the bank was issued a license and named merchant bank. That same year, it re-branded and changed its name to Prudent Merchant Bank Limited. In 2006, Prudent Merchant Bank Limited merged with four other banks in order to form Skye Bank Plc.
In January 2011, Skye bank introduced a Naira-denominated debit card, called “MasterCard Verve”. This was the first of its kind in Nigeria. In 2014, the bank acquired Mainstreet Bank Limited. On 21 September 2018, it was announced that the central bank had revoked the operating license of Skye Bank. This was due to the inability of the bank’s shareholders to recapitalize after the 2016 intervention from the Central bank. The assets and liabilities of Skye bank were to be taken over by a new entity called Polaris Bank due to the inability of the Skye Bank’s shareholders to adequately recapitalise the bank after the 2016 intervention.
Standard Chartered bank
The history of the Standard Chartered Bank can be traced to 1965 when the Standard Bank of South Africa merged with the Bank of West Africa. The name was then changed to Standard Bank of West Africa. Four years after the merger, Standard Bank Nigeria was incorporated locally to take over its operations in Nigeria.
However, the Nigerian civil war saw a major economic upturn and as a consequence, the bank remained a shareholder of First Bank of Nigeria until 1996. Standard Chartered bank came into Nigeria again in 1999 and was opened to customers on 15 September 1999. This time, the bank came as a wholly-owned subsidiary of Standard Chartered Bank Plc with its headquarters in the United Kingdom.
Unity Bank provides financial services such as corporate banking, retail banking, as well as investment banking in Nigeria. In January 2006, nine financial institutions with expertise came together to form Unity Bank plc.
SunTrust Bank Nigeria Limited (STBNL)
SunTrust Bank is a commercial bank with regional authorization. The bank is licensed by the Central bank of Nigeria and national banking regulator. SunTrust was incorporated and founded in 2009 as a mortgage bank. Later in November 2015, the bank was converted to a regional commercial bank and granted license by the Central Bank of Nigeria. The bank was opened for business to the public on 15 August 2016.
Providus Bank Limited (PBL)
Providus Bank is a commercial bank with regional authorization. The bank was granted its regional banking license to function as a commercial bank by the Central Bank of Nigeria in June 2016.
Two popular banks; Access bank, founded in 1988 and Diamond bank, founded in 1991 merged on the 1st of April, 2019. This merger of Access Bank and Diamond Bank made Access bank the largest bank in Africa.
Zenith Bank was established in May 1990 and commenced banking operations in July 1990. Zenith bank became a public limited company on June 17, 2004
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