Femi Otedola named First Bank Holdings chair

Alex Omenye
Alex Omenye

Nigerian billionaire, and entrepreneur Femi Otedola, has been appointed as the new chairman of the board of directors for the First Bank of Nigeria Holdings.

The decision, announced after a recent board meeting, saw Otedola taking over from the outgoing Chairman, Alhaji Ahmad Abdullahi. This move comes amid Otedola’s recent excitement about rejoining the Forbes African Billionaires list, ranking 20th with a net worth of $1.1 billion.

Sharing his appointment on Instagram, Otedola expressed his reaction with an “Interesting” caption and accompanying smiley and dollar emojis. Forbes noted that the 2024 list of 20 billionaires saw a total wealth increase to $82.4 billion from the previous year’s $81.5 billion, partly attributed to Otedola’s return after a seven-year hiatus. He last appeared on the Forbes Africa list in 2017, securing the 20th spot this year.

The appointment, effective January 31, 2024, was disclosed in a corporate filing on the Nigerian Exchange Limited (NGX), with the financial institution notifying investors of this significant development.

It’s worth mentioning that in July 2023, legal representatives of Dr. Oba Otudeko, former chairman of the group, had urged FBN Holdings to disregard a petition by Ecobank’s lawyers, demanding a rejection of 4.7 billion shares purchased by Otedola. The legal entity dismissed Ecobank’s claims of a Supreme Court judgment backing its stance that Otudeko owed it N13.5 billion.

The Securities and Exchange Commission disclosed investigating the tussle at First Bank of Nigeria Holdings Plc, while Otedola was listed as the largest shareholder in October 2023, despite Otudeko’s acquisition of 4.7 billion units of FBNH shares in July 2023. FBN Holdings clarified that the equity stake of Barbican Capital Limited, affiliated with Honeywell Group Limited, was 13.3%.

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