Expectations are high as Heritage Bank leverages on the approvals of its acquisition of Enterprise Bank by both the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) and the Federal High Court to provide quality service.
The consummation of the deal brokered by the Asset Management Corporation of Nigeria (AMCON) is seen by some industry analysts as the high point of transformation which saw Heritage Bank Limited increasing its branch network (Experience Centres) from current 15 to about 200 branches, thus positioning it among the top seven banks in Nigeria.
The management of the bank believes that the epoch-making events recently mark a new era in banking in Nigeria as the integration of the two entities with such similar values, excellent and professional staffing and strong branch network can only lead to an entity that is poised for excellence and quality financial services.
“We are pleased with the final approval of the merger of the two institutions. The stage is now set for us to achieve the vision of a bigger and better bank that offers world-class banking services designed to help customers to create, preserve and transfer wealth,” said Ifie Sekibo, managing director/chief executive, Heritage Bank.
“With this acquisition, the new Heritage Bank is better positioned to offer unparalleled banking services which spread across over 200 branches, 177 ATMs, 57 Cash Centres and 2000 POS terminals in 26 states. We shall harness the better of the two worlds combined in terms of our innovative products, bespoke technology and extended branch network manned by a team of tenacious people; as this automatically transforms our bank from a tier-2 player to a strong Tier-1 player that is one bigger, better,” Sekibo added.
CBN granted final approval for the deal. Also, the Federal High Court had formally sanctioned the scheme of merger and ordered the merger of both institutions.
Some analysts say the nod has now paved way for the management of the bank to embark on a journey of innovation, in terms of services and products anchored on cutting-edge technology.
The implication, they argue, is that customers would be better for it as quality services would be guaranteed.
What this means is that the management and staff would have to work round the clock to meet and possibly exceed the expectations of the customers and also withstand the upsurge in the number of customers. They reason that the development marks an approval and confidence in the bank to deliver on promise.
Heritage Bank had on October 15, 2014 made history with the successful completion of the acquisition of Enterprise Bank, after investing about N56 billion in the deal.
A Federal High Court sitting in Lagos, on July 27 this year, had ordered an Extra-ordinary General Meeting (EGM) of all the parties to the deal. This EGM was held on Wednesday, August 12, where the shareholders of the merging banks sealed the deal.