Access Holdings Leads Tier-1 Banks with Largest Customer Base

Nume Ekeghe

Following its expansion to over 14 African countries, Access Holdings Plc as at December 31, 2021, leads other Tier-1 banks in customer base with over 45 million customers.

The acquisition of Diamond Bank Plc with a customer base at 19 million, including 10 million mobile users in 2019, helped Access Holdings expand its customer base, improve branch network and staff strength. 

The banking subsidiary of Access Bank in 2017 had 9 million customer base and in 2018, it increased to over 10 million. The bank reported over 36 million customers with 41 million account holders in 2019 and in 2020 and has now grown it to 45 million unique customers.

The Group Executive Officer, Access Holding, Mr. Herbert Wigwe in a presentation to investors/analysts noted: “With respect to our global network, customer base and digital capacity, as at December 2021 we had well over 45 million unique customers which is a testament to our increasing coverage and the great scale of our franchise.

“Additional footprint is strong and emergent with over 2,921 ATMs spread across strategic locations and 74,000 point of sale terminals. We have a wide spread of branches in major cities and financial inclusion centres with 735 branches and about 95,000 agent locations. 

“This reflects the sheer scale of our digital and physical presence in a bid to remain closer and accessible to our customers. Our presence spans across the ten African countries, the UK and UAE with three representative offices in China, India and Lebanon.”

Following Access Holdings is FBN Holdings with over 35 million customer base, while Guaranty Trust Holdings Plc (GTCO) and United Bank for Africa (UBA) Plc have 25.7 million and 25 million customer base in 2021, respectively. 

Also, Zenith Bank Plc, another strong Tier-1 bank reported over 18.7million customer base as of 2021. 

As observed by THISDAY, Zenith Bank in 2021 leads other Tier-1 to drive its digital channels to enhance easy transactions. The bank as of 2021 had 163,398 active Point on Sales (PoS) terminals, an increase of 82 per cent from 89,636 active PoS reported in 2020. 

Despite increased PoS, the bank only added 42 Automated Teller Machines (ATMs) to 2,086 in 2021 from 2,044 with only one branch in 2021 to bring total branches to 441 from 440 reported in 2020. 

With increasing digital banking channels, Zenith Bank closed 2021 financial year with N85.01 trillion value of electronic product transactions, an increase of 73 per cent from N49.18 trillion in 2020, while the number of transactions rose significantly by 69 per cent to 1.95 billion in 2021 from 1.16billion reported in 2020.

Coming close to Zenith Bank with the number of PoS was UBA with 119,303 active PoS as of 2021. 

UBA in 2021 served a 25 million customer base with diverse channels of over 1 000 business offices and customer touch points of about 2,697 ATMs, robust online banking and mobile banking.

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