First Bank MD's thoughts on the Access/Diamond Merger, Oil and Gas, Petroleum

Managing Director/CEO of First Bank of Nigeria Adesola Adeduntan sees the merger plans between Access Bank and Diamond Bank Plc as a welcome development.

The move in his view is part of a consolidation wave that has taken place in the last ten years.

“We have had two waves of consolidation in the market. The first was in 2004-2005 which was orchestrated by Professor Chukuma Soludo. The second wave happened between 2009 under Governor Lamido Sanusi which was what saw to the acquisition of Intercontinental Bank by Access Bank.”

“For operators like us who have been watching this strategic landscape, it was not unexpected. For banks and indeed any institution or any business venture, you do have two opportunities or two key options of growth. You can decide to grow organically or you can decide to grow inorganically, which is what Access Bank is doing”

Consolidations like this in his view are also welcome because Nigerian banks are small from a continental perspective.


“When you put them (FirstBank, GTBank, Access Bank, Zenith Bank and the United Bank for Africa) on an African landscape, our banks are actually quite small. That is the truth.

“In fact, from the last statistics I reviewed, there was no Nigerian bank in the top 10 banks in Africa. When you then realise the fact that Nigeria has the largest economy in Africa, but we are not in the top ten banks, that tells you two things: Firstly, that there is a significant opportunity for growth for banks but secondly opportunities for further consolidation”

Adeduntun added that there are banks that have perfected the act of growing organically, while there are banks that prefer and take advantage of the inorganic method such as Access Bank.


  1. Dear Mr Olorunfemi, may I know why you used those derogatory comments on the First Bank’s CEO please? If you have anything against him or his remarks, there’s room for you to constructively criticize than to insult a top CEO or whoever it is. Your comment is highly irresponsible and unfortunate.

    You can do better sir.

  2. @olurunfemi even if you had your griviances.You clearly show to us that the man you loathe is an opposite of what u describe him as by your language structure.Lets be more mature and circumspect please.

  3. For anyone to rise to the position of a CEO of not just any bank in Nigeria but FIRST Bank, a reasonable man would obviously know that, that person would have passed through many screening and test machines to become a high quality personnel and CEO.
    The hate speech here reveals some of the attributes of the originator.

  4. I have never met Adeduntan , I had never heard of him before he became First Bank MD and I know nothing about his competence. However I do know that he needs to work more on his visibility as MD. Perception matters a lot in this industry. I can’t remember ever seeing his picture on a ThisDay or Business Day cover page whereas I can’t count for the likes of Herbert/Access or Agbaje/GTB. Perception is everything. Given the relatively poor spate of results from the bank you need to be seen to be hard at work not just behind-the-scenes. If he doesn’t like publicity he should allow someone else act as the public face of the bank.

  5. Although the time I have worked with him was short, I have known Mr Adeduntan as a very respectable gentleman, an astute banker, and a high professional in any career, had he embraced another one. Had he been different from what I describe, he wouldn’t have reached the pinnacle of this industry. The derogatory comments rained on him are highly undeserved.


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