The banking industry in Nigeria has a rich history. This history is also replete with trials and triumphs. The turbulences, notwithstanding, the industry remains standing, and it is also thriving. When its story is told, one name that the writers cannot afford to miss out on is Ifiesimama Melvin Precious Sekibo, a fellow of the Institute of Chartered Accountants of Nigeria (ICAN) and the Chartered Institute of Bankers of Nigeria (CIBN). Aside from the CIBN and ICAN, he also holds the fellowship of several professional Institutes such as the Institute of Directors; the Institute of Petroleum, London; the Nigerian Institute of Management; and the Institute of Credit Administration.
A quiet operator, Dr Ifie Sekibo—as he is better known— sits atop Heritage Bank, an institution whose name embodies its managing director’s status as a man with the skills for returning moribund businesses to the path of profitability. One of the first things he did to make Heritage Bank stand out was to sit with a former bank owner and discussed why his bank failed. From their discussion, he learnt many lessons which came in handy in running Heritage Bank and making it a force to reckon with despite its background as a bank that was moribund for no less than a decade. Sekibo, who was born on April 18, 1965, has been Heritage Bank’s Managing Director since 2012 and the bank has grown beyond many people’s expectations. From zero he has made a hero of the bank. He has pieced carcasses together and what has emerged is an institution with a future not only bright but worth waiting for. This is assured by its innovations that are almost second to none in the industry.