Without a doubt,Â Tony Elumelu, is a quintessential banker.
While he was growing up, his dream was to become one of the greatest economists and bankers in the world. Luckily, providence has granted him his heartâ€™s desire.
Very hard-working,Â the chairman of Heirs Holding shone like a thousand starsÂ when he broke an impeccable record asÂ the first African to receive the Dwight D. Eisenhower GlobalÂ Entrepreneurship Award in its 33 years of existence. The progenitor of the award, Dwight, was the 34th President of the United States of America.
The award was presentedÂ to the chairman of theÂ United Bank of Africa, UBA at an award gala in New YorkÂ by another former US President, George W. Bush.Â It was well attended by otherÂ recognised world leaders.
This year, like every other one, has been a good one for the man who is fast becoming a global phenomenon in business. Awards have been coming in for him for his unparalleled contributions to the worldâ€™s entrepreneurship.
At 34, he set forth on the path to greatness when he led a small group of investors to acquire the defunct Standard Trust Bank, a small struggling commercial bank in Lagos, and restored it to profitability within a few years. Again, he became a reference point around the globe in 2005 when he led one of the greatest mergers in the history of African banking sector – the merger of Standard Trust Bank (STB) and United Bank of Africa (UBA). Consequently, at the worldâ€™s major stock markets such as NASDAQ OMX in New York, London Stock Exchange, Abuja Securities and Commodities Exchange, JSE Limited Nigerian Stock Exchange and many others, his name rings so loud.Â Â Within five years, he transformed the bank to be one of the best financial institutions in the world.
Evidently, the Delta State-born financial guru is powerful. Little wonder, he was rated one of the most influential persons in Africa as well as one of the 2014 Forbes richest men in Africa.