Nume Ekeghe writes on the recent accretion of awards received by First Bank which reflects on the brand’s unwavering drive for excellence and customer satisfaction
First Bank of Nigeira has continued to affirm its position as the bank of choice in the country, clinching more than 11 awards from across the globe attesting to the bank’s exceptional commitment to promoting national, regional and global economic growth and development through constructive engagements with the public and private sectors of various economies, and its host communities.
Being woven into the fabrics of the society, the bank’s outstanding services has attracted numerous recognitions and awards most especially on the its delivery of excellent banking services to its customers across Sub-Saharan Africa.
Promoting Pan African Trade
Most recent in its bouquet of awards is the Financial Institution of the Year Award at the African Export-Import Bank (Afreximbank) inaugural and Pan African Business and Development Awards which it clinched last month at the 30th anniversary of Afreximbank hosted in Ghana.
The award which was in association with the Business Council for Africa, in Accra, Ghana was bestowed on the bank for its excellent performance in the business and financial sector. It was also in recognition of its pan-African spirit through its leading role in promoting trade and investment across the continent, which have been instrumental to strengthening the economic and multilateral business relationship across nations.
Amongst its role in facilitating transactions across borders, in 2021, the bank launched its First Global Transfer (FGT) initiative, specifically designed to ensure safe, timely and improved efficiency in the transfer of funds across the network of FirstBank subsidiaries in Africa. The FGT is not restricted to FirstBank Group’s Customers alone but it is also open to every individual resident in the country the funds transfer is originating from.
Unique Customer Service
The bank’s unique and satisfactory customer service also earned its medals as it was named Best Private Bank for Sustainable Investing in Africa Award 2023 by Global Finance, in acknowledgement of its exceptional attention to the unique requirements of high net-worth individuals as they seek to increase, protect and pass on their wealth.
It was also named the Best Private Bank Award by World Finance in recognition and commendation of its exceptional dedication to meeting the distinct needs of affluent individuals as they strive to grow, safeguard, and transfer their wealth.
Similarly, at the Global Banking Finance Awards, First Bank had been named Best Corporate Bank Western Africa 2023 for its remarkable achievement in providing exceptional corporate banking services across Western Africa.
At the International Finance Awards it had won the Best Retail Bank – Nigeria 2023 medal in recognition of its unwavering commitment to advancing financial inclusion through its extensive branch network, Agency Banking and cutting-edge digital solutions that provide a wide range of retail products
First Bank had also earned the Next 100 Global Awards for Retail Bank by Global Banking & Finance, in appreciation of its sterling performance in the Retail Banking sector as well as Next 100 Global Awards for Digital Experience Centre by Global Banking & Finance. The Award was presented to FirstBank for its prominent role in promoting innovation by launching the Digital Experience Centre.
Innovative Driver of Financial inclusion
Having played a critical part in promoting financial inclusion in the country, the banks effort in taking financial services to the remotest part of the country has also not gone unnoticed. It had been awarded the Best Financial Inclusion service provider in Nigeria 2023 by Digital Banker Africa.
The bank through its vast network of Firstmonie agents have promoted financial inclusion in the country with presence in all 774 local government areas in the country. According to the Digital Banker Africa, FirstBank received recognition for its exceptional achievement in spearheading the market with innovative financial solutions aimed at addressing the needs of underserved communities.
FirstBank had achieved this by employing dependable, secure, and advanced technology that is both robust and cost-effective for its agents and customers. Its innovative spirit had also grabbed global attention as it was crowned the Most Innovative Retail Banking Product – FastTrack ATM – Nigeria 2023 by International Finance Awards.
The Bank had won the Award for demonstrating its commitment to innovative financial solutions by pioneering the FastTrack ATM. The touchless solution enables USSD string or mobile banking app to initiate and later complete transactions by tapping contactless Near Field Communication card on a designated ATM.
Recently, the bank had launched a Humanoid Robot in it’s state-of-the-art self-service branch at Adetokunbo Ademola VI, Lagos called Digital Experience Center. Humanoid robots are professional service robots built to mimic human motion and interaction. They provide value by automating tasks in a way that leads to cost-savings and productivity.
The first industry-led robot according to the bank is equipped with Video Banking and Artificial Intelligence (AI), taking on the role of a friendly branch staff and can engage customers in conversations as well as through a touch screen strapped to his chest.
The services performed by the robot include responding to customer enquires on cash deposits, withdrawals and ATM cards, aids complaint management as customers can log a complaint via QR with feedback generated within the advised time, keeps customers up to date with happenings about the bank including products launch and upgrades designed to strengthen the customer experience and satisfaction.
Other accolades that were earned by the bank in the course of this year include the African Bank of the Year by African Leadership Magazine, which was presented with the Award as a testament to its exceptional performance.
It was also named the Best CSR Bank Western Africa 2023 from Global Banking and Finance Awards, for the impactful implementation of its SPARK initiative in fostering and advancing conscious acts of kindness across West Africa.
Speaking on the awards, Chief Executive Officer, FirstBank, Dr. Adesola Adeduntan said, “The recognition reinforces our commitment to promoting trade, finance and investment opportunities across borders which have been instrumental to the continued growth and development of the continent and the world. On behalf of the Board and Management, this award is dedicated to all employees at the FirstBank Group for their diligence and hardwork as well as to our esteemed customers for their loyalty and patronage in over 129 years of existence.
“The multitude of awards earned by First Bank of Nigeria is a testament to its unwavering dedication to excellence in banking. With a commitment to promoting economic growth, providing exceptional services, and driving innovation, the bank has solidified its position as a leader in the industry. These accolades are a recognition of the hard work and diligence of the bank’s employees, as well as the loyalty and patronage of its valued customers. First Bank remains committed to delivering outstanding banking solutions and contributing to the continued growth and development of the nation and beyond