Entrepreneur and philanthropist Dr. Herbert Wigwe received a series of awards and recognitions last year, mainly for his unwavering work on building up a sustainable and strong financial infrastructure through banking in his home country of Nigeria but also, and not least for his constant humanitarian work through charitable organizations and education programs he leads. Herbert Onyewumbu Wigwe is of Nigeria’s leading bankers. He is the CEO and Group Managing Director of Access Bank, by now one of Nigeria’s top banking institutions.
When receiving the Euromoney 2016 awards for excellence in the category of Best Transformation, “Africa’s Best Bank Transformation”. Mr. Herbert Wigwe was honoured as the ‘Bank CEO of the Year’ while his bank, Access Bank Plc emerged the best bank in Nigeria for the year 2016. The award ceremony was held in July at the Tower of London in the UK and attended by over 500 CEOs’ and senior executives of winning institutions.
Access bank was the first African bank to receive The Karlsruhe Sustainable Finance Awards in July. Those are the well respected awards of the European Organization for Sustainable Development (EOSD), providing recognition to financial institutions that have successfully ingrained economic, social and environmental sustainability into their business, particularly in the fields of green equity, social finance and a holistic sustainable approach in the financial sector. Access Bank emerged as the overall winner of the 2016 “Outstanding Business Sustainability Achievement Award”. Giving recognition to the economical, social and environmental aspects in the bank’s strategy and business processes.
It has always been clear, both in Mr. Wigwe’s speech and actions that he wants to build up a better future for his native Nigeria. Access Bank School of Banking Excellence won the 2016 Chartered Institute of Bankers of Nigeria (CIBN) award for the “Best Bank Academy”. Presenting the award at the 10th Annual Banking and Finance Conference 2016, former registrar of the CIBN, Dr. Uju Ogubunka, praised Access Bank for training its workforce and thereby elevating the capacity for the banking and finance industry in Nigeria. The School of Banking Excellence takes young graduates through an intensive five month long pre-career course, preparing them for working in the financial sector. It was the first of such institutions to be accredited by the CIBN in March 2015. From its founding in 2002 the school’s clear aim was to train youths, educate them and prepare future leaders for the banking industry of Nigeria.
Mr. Wigwe’s first degree in financing was in accountancy from the University of Nigeria, he also holds an MA in Banking and Finance from the University College of North Wales (now Bangor), an MSc in Financial Economics from the University of London. He’s an Alumnus of the Harvard Business School Executive Management Program. Wigwe began his career at Coopers & Lybrand, Lagos as a management consultant, later qualifying as a Chartered Accountant. After working for a while at Capital Bank, he joined GTBank where he spent over a decade working in corporate and institutional banking, rising to become the Executive Director in charge of institutional banking. Mr. Wigwe is the Chairman of The Access Bank (UK) Ltd and Interim Chairman of Nigerian Mortgage Refinance Company Plc.
Herbert Onyewumbu Wigwe was born in August 1966 in Lagos Nigeria. His marriage to Chizoba Wigwe (née Nwuba) is blessed with four children; Chizi, Tochi, Hannah and David.