First City Monument Bank Plc (FCMB) has reassured its various stakeholders and those of FinBank that the two institutions which have been going through the process of integration will conclude the merger process in October, 2012.
Segun Odusanya, Deputy Managing Director/Executive Director (DMD) of FCMB who gave this reassurance in a chat with newsmen in Lagos over the weekend said the process is 95 percent completed.
“Our initial target was second quarter of the year, but we got delayed by issues around the Capital Market probe and the removal of the Securities and Exchange Commission Board. Things are now back to normal, and most of the approvals have been obtained”.
The FCMB DMD also revealed that post merger, the bank which has been noted for its niche in corporate banking will be expanding its retail banking focus to create a more robust and stable institution.
“We want to drive solutions across the various segments – corporate, commercial, small enterprises and consumer segments – of the economy. We have been doing this organically in the last five years, and have seen steady growths in all these segments”.
According to Odusanya, the acquisition of Fin Bank is expected to give two/three years leap (especially in the area of branch network, liquidity, and balance sheet size) to FCMB.
He revealed that with the acquisition, FCMB has doubled its branch network, doubled its customer base, improved the liquidity position of the bank, and all these create a very good platform to provide better customer-centric products and services in the consumer space.
“We are now better situated to provide our expertise to more commercial and small enterprises to grow their businesses with not just the banking products we offer, but also with our expertise in corporate and financial advisory. We want to help create more entrepreneurs in this country and the opportunity to do this is enormous” he stated.
He went further to state “We are aggressively driving retail, but in doing this, we are not de-emphasizing corporate. We have made a lot of investments in people, products, systems and branches (from the acquisition) in both segments.
“We understand that both segments complement each other, and for us to continue to create endearing value a universal bank, we needed to provide services based on deep rooted insights across all the segments. We are currently having discussions with the central bank to further extend these services to the mass market”.