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PR Newswire
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Access Bank Group Makes Extra Donation to UNICEF

LONDON, July 16, 2016 /PRNewswire/ --

As part of its continued support of UNICEF, Access Bank Group, along with 5th Chukker, The Access Bank UK and Access Private Bank hosted the 'Access Bank Polo Day' at the Guards Polo Club, Windsor on Saturday July 16.

(Logo: http://photos.prnewswire.com/prnh/20160716/390339LOGO )

The annual event is the climax to the high-profile Access Bank/UNICEF Charity Shield Polo tournament, which is in its ninth year and is aimed at reaching out to and highlighting the plight of vulnerable children and orphans and internationally displaced persons.

Based in Kaduna, Nigeria it is the biggest charity polo tournament in Africa and stimulates support for the work of the UNICEF / ACCESS Bank initiative across Africa. This year the Bank donated an additional N10-million (£27,000) to UNICEF for its campaign against HIV/AIDS among Nigerian children.

Since the UNICEF/ACCESS Bank initiative was started it has rebuilt two schools in Kaduna and, kept more than 8000 students in continuous education, while at the same time developing new school blocks and a computer literacy building all in a more secure and friendly school environment. The communities surrounding the schools are being supported with bore-holes for water, and sewing and grinding machines to secure employment and stimulate economic and social development.

The UK event was organised by The Access Bank UK Limited which has just published its Annual Report for the year ended December 31, 2015. This shows impressive growth indicators including an increase in operating income of 31% from £15-million in 2014 to £19.7-million. The Bank's profit before tax grew by 72% to £8.6-million, while its post tax profit was up 74% to £6.8-million..

Commenting on the Bank's success chief executive officer and managing director Jamie Simmonds said:

"We are now in our second five year plan that embodies our principles of relationship-based banking, growing our business through the depth and quality of customer relationships, while at the same time maintaining a moderate appetite for risk. Our objective is to grow the international business of Access Bank Group through customer service excellence, and innovative solutions in trade finance, commercial banking and asset management."

Drawing attention to the Bank's 2015 highlights, Jamie Simmonds added: "In 2015 we launched an operation in the UAE, introduced a high net worth regulated execution only mortgage product and unveiled an on-line retail savings product.

"Our achievements owe a great deal to the strong partnership that we have with our parent company, as evidenced by our joint support of the fifth Access Bank Day at the Guards Polo Club in Windsor."

Access Bank PLC group managing director and chairman of The Access Bank UK Ltd, Herbert Wigwe paid tribute to the UK operation by saying:

"The Access Bank UK has become the business we always envisaged it would. Founded on a model of excellent service and moderate risk appetite it has grown income, increased profit and delivers a healthy return on equity. Importantly it is adding value to Access Bank Group and enhancing the Group's stature on the international stage."

Wigwe also explained the reasons behind the Bank's continued support for the Fifth Chukker UNICEF initiative. "We are conscious of our role as a change agent in Nigeria that can help institute socio-economic development through responsible business practice and environmental considerations," he said. "In addition, we are continually seeking ways through which more resources can be pooled towards supporting the children. We are part of the community and as such should support its wellbeing."

For details of where to obtain photographs and further background information, please see "notes to editors" below

Notes to editors:

Photos (© http://www.imagesofpolo.com) of the Access Bank Polo Day at The Guards Polo Club on June 13 may be found at:

https://www.dropbox.com/sh/7q5is6be51ueszr/AACY7ydEofAUisE4el_VjFJia?dl=0

(For online media please use separate folder at top of web page)

Suggested captions:

0289 Herbert Wiggenhall, Emir of Kano and Chairman of Coronation Group plc

0361 Jamie Simmonds CEO Access Bank UK tells guests at the Access Bank Charity Polo day something of the schools and the 8000 students that have benefitted from the Access Bank, Unicef, First Chukker initiative in Northern Nigeria

0944 - Adolfo Cambiaso Junior takes control

1008 - Juan Martin Nero, Mia Cambiaso and Babangida Hassan

1172 Adamu Mahmoud Atta - captain First Chukker, takes his award from Mrs Mosum Beli- Olusola Chairman Access Bank Group, the Emir of Kano, and Herbert Wigwe, Access Bank Group PLC managing director and chairman of The Access Bank UK Ltd,at the end of the Access Bank Charity cup match

1180 Adolf of Cambois, the world's leading Polo player takes his award from the Emirates of Kano and Herbert Wigwe at the end of the Access Bank Charity Cup match

1224 Babingida Hassan receives the Access bank charity cup from the Emirates of Kano and Herbert Wigwe CEO Access Bank Group

1232 The two team captains Babingida Hassan and Adams Attached hold the Access Bank Charity Cup with Herbert Wigwe Chief Executive Access Bank group

1144 Damian Duncan - Captain of the Delaneycommunications@eircom.net Polo team receives the Emir's cup from the Emir of Kano and Herbert Wigwe ceo Access Bank Group.

About Access Bank

Access Bank Plc is a full service commercial Bank operating through a network of 348 branches and service outlets located in major centres across Nigeria, Sub Saharan Africa and the United Kingdom. Listed on the Nigerian Stock Exchange in 1998, the Bank serves its various markets through 5 business segments: Institutional, Commercial, Retail Banking, Transaction Services and Financial Markets.

The Bank has over 800,000 shareholders including several Nigerian and International Institutional Investors and has enjoyed what is arguably Africa's most successful banking growth trajectory in the last ten years ranking amongst Africa's top 15 banks by total assets and capital in 2012 and among Nigeria's top four banks by most metrics.

As part of its continued growth strategy, Access Bank is focused on mainstreaming sustainable business practices into its operations. The Bank strives to deliver sustainable economic growth that is profitable, environmentally responsible and socially relevant.

About The Access Bank UK Ltd

The Access Bank UK Limited is a wholly owned subsidiary of Access Bank Plc. It offers a broad range of banking products and services including:

  • Private banking, through its specialist division Access Private Bank (see below)
  • Business banking
  • Trade finance
  • Personal banking

to business and personal customers, both from the UK and Sub-Saharan Africa. Its strong commercial ties to Africa and local knowledge are invaluable for customers with personal and business involvement in these regions.

The Bank was authorised by the Financial Services Authority on 12 August 2008. Following the reorganisation of the Regulatory Regime in the UK on 1 April 2013 with the introduction of Twin Peaks regulation, the Bank is currently regulated by the Prudential Regulation Authority and the Financial Conduct Authority. The Bank is authorised to undertake a wide range of banking activities.

The Access Bank UK's outstanding year on year growth is derived in part from its international sales and operations, and its geographical expansion within Sub Saharan Africa including trade finance transactions in Nigeria, Ghana, Zambia, Rwanda and Cote D'Ivoire. The transactions related to the import and export of goods such as oil products, paper, auto parts and numerous other commodities. This work, and its success, highlights the Bank's ability to provide an invaluable service proposition for customer's wishing to maximise opportunities in the growing economies of Sub Saharan Africa and its ability to increase market share in Nigeria - the fastest growing economy on the continent.

To further broaden its international reach and ensure the outstanding growth remains self-sustaining, the Bank is undertaking a range of developments. These include

  • developing closer working relationships with OECD exporters to increase exposure to trade flows across a broader range of African countries
  • focusing on taking advantage of the growing trade flows in Ghana plus adopting a growth strategy for the Rwandan and Zambian markets

These measures will mean the Bank avoids over-dependency on its substantial market share in Nigeria.

Acting as a confirming bank across OECD markets is a key part of The Access Bank's growing opportunities in trade finance for itself and its customers. Its confirmation is now accepted on over 95% of occasions.

It also:

  • is a registered correspondent and trade finance bank for the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN)
  • issues Letters of Credit on behalf of the Nigerian government and Nigerian National Petroleum Company (NNPC)
  • acts as a correspondent bank for Nigerian and Ghanaian banks lacking a UK-authorised subsidiary
  • is accredited by IFC (World Bank Commercial Arm).

Access Private Bank

Access Private Bank is a global private bank dedicated to helping high net worth individuals reach their wealth management and financial goals. The Bank provides an individual tailored investment solution that is complemented by a personal banking service, and is committed to working with its customers to build long-term relationships based on understanding, knowledge, trust and accountability. Its integrated global investment and wealth management service is based on the principles of discretionary investment management and a portfolio designed specifically for each client after discussion on personal circumstances, investment objectives, knowledge and attitude to risk.

The Bank fully manages customers' investment and reports the performance of portfolios on a regular basis to ensure customers are kept up to date with developments.

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