Nigeria’s tier-one banks, Zenith, FirstBank, Guaranty Trust, Access, United Bank for Africa and Diamond Bank have been listed among the top twenty five banks in Africa in the Banker magazine 2017 1000 global banks ranking.
Zenith, with a capital of $2.105 billion is first in Nigeria, 10th in Africa and 430 in the world. FirstBank, with $1.422 billion tier-1 capital made the list as the second largest bank in Nigeria, 12th in Africa and 567th in the world.
Guaranty Trust Bank followed closely as the third largest bank in Nigeria with capital of $1.329 billion. It occupies the 13th position in Africa and 588th in the global ranking. In the fourth position is Access Bank, which ranks 14th in Africa and 628th in global ranking.
United Bank for Africa, according to the magazine’s rating is fifth in Nigeria, 22nd in Africa and 832 globally with Diamond Bank following closely as the sixth largest bank in Nigeria, 24th in Africa and 881 among the top 1000 banks in the world.
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Nigeria’s Zenith Bank has fallen from seventh place last year to 10th in the 2017 Africa table. This follows a 25 percent fall in the bank’s Tier-1 capital, largely attributable to the poor performance of the naira over the review period. Indeed, every Nigerian lender in the 2017 ranking experienced a significant reduction in Tier-1 capital, The Banker Magazine noted.
The magazine also stated: “Africa’s leading economies faced adverse conditions over the 2016 review period, as low commodity prices continue to shake the continent’s growth trajectory. Dealing with a shortage of foreign exchange, heightened political risk and volatile currencies, the performances of some regional lenders have suffered.”
It however sounded a note of caution, noting that the position of African lenders is not a one-dimensional story that most of the lenders indeed improved.
“Yet, as the rankings demonstrate, this is not a one-dimensional story. In some cases, African lenders have improved on their positions in the Top 1000 ranking, helped in part by prudent growth strategies and diversified business models.”
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On the continent South Africa’s Standard Bank Group once again tops the regional table with $8.6 billion in Tier 1 capital. This represents a 15 percent increase from the 2016 ranking, accompanied by a notable jump in the global table from 160 to 149.
Rounding out the top three positions are fellow South African lenders FirstRand and Nedbank, second and third, respectively. FirstRand’s Tier 1 marginally decreased over the review period, dropping by 3.8 per cent. Conversely, Nedbank posted a 24.7 percent gain.
It noted that outside the top three banks, which have remained static in the regional table, some notable movements have occurred. Of particular note is National Bank of Egypt’s climb to fifth place with $3.2 billion in Tier 1 capital. This puts the bank at number 301 in the global ranking, up from 366 in the last year’s rankings.
Africa’s highest movers on the list are lenders from South Africa. In total, four banks made the top 10 in 2017, pointing to the strengthening of the rand in the latter half of the review period as well as the diversified, sophisticated business models over which these banks preside.
Angola’s Banco Angolano de Investimentos, is another notable improved bank, which posted a 22 per cent increase to its Tier 1 capital.
Among the top five banks by return on capital, three Egyptian lenders rose to the fore: State-owned National Bank of Egypt scoops the top spot with 66.8 percent followed by Commercial International Bank (CIB), a private lender with 55.9 percent and Banque Misr with 53.3 percent.
Completing the top five are Angola’s Banco BIC and Nigeria’s United Bank for Africa, with 44 percent and 42 percent, respectively.