The Managing Director of Guaranty Trust Bank Ghana Limited (GTBank), Mr Olalekan Sanusi, says the bank has over the past 10 years laid a solid foundation that will propel it to the list of top five banks in the country in the near future.
Without being definite about timelines, Mr Sanusi said evidence from the bank’s performance within its first decade of operation showed that getting to the top spot could even be sooner than anticipated.
“We are going to be big because the overall objective is always to dominate in whatever market we operate, but we will take our time and we will get there,” he said in a media interview to mark the bank’s 10th anniversary in the country.
He cited the aggressive branch expansion, profitability, dominance in the area of financial technology, a strong team and industry recognition over the period as evidence of a solid foundation capable of propelling the bank to the top five spot in the industry.
“If we look at our growth trajectory vis-a-vis what our plans are, we are satisfied with what we have achieved. We understand what we are doing and we are pursuing our strategy to ensure that we achieve our objective,” he said in an interview.
Profitability over size
Last year, the bank was ranked sixth in return on equity (RoE), 12th in industry share of net profit and 17th on industry share of assets in a special banking survey conducted by the Graphic Business, a sister publication, using the 2014 financial results of 26 banks at the time.
Its market share is currently around three per cent, with a customer base of over 200,000, something the MD said was phenomenal for an institution that had existed for just 10 years.
“So far, we have been able to establish ourselves and today, when we meet regulators and other stakeholders, they give us some respect because they say you ‘guys’ run a very safe institution,” he added.
That notion, he said, was based on the bank’s robust systems, substantial investments in technology to aid banking and its obsessiveness with profitability over size within the period that it had existed.
“For us, size is good but profitability is key,” he said, and added that the GTBank would continue to be risk averse in order to remain profitable in the face of growth and competition.
From one to 33 branches
GTBank, which started operations in 2006 as a subsidiary of GTBank Plc of Nigeria, currently has 33 branches in seven regions.
It is now aiming at covering the entire 10 regions with new branches, which the MD said would be opened soon.
The branch expansions, he said, would aid the bank’s strategy of dominating the banking industry, which is becoming increasingly competitive.
Mr Sanusi also mentioned the bank’s Disaster Recovery Centre as one of the initiatives the bank had established to mitigate the impact of disasters.
The centre serves as a backup for the bank’s operations and data, making it possible for GTBank to migrate onto the centre in the event of a disaster.
Going forward, Mr Sanusi said the bank would continue to invest in information and communications technology (ICT) to be able to deliver value for customers.