Wigwe’s footprints : 600 branches of Access Bank in three continents, 18 countries, over 50 million customers managed by over 28,000 employees

Dr. Herbert Wigwe, founder of Wigwe University a philanthropist, and Group Chief Executive Officer of Access Holdings Plc ,a multi-national financial services organisation that offers commercial banking, lending, payment, pension, insurance, and asset management services  made a very impressive impact in the financial and social sectors both in Nigeria and abroad.

Pix: Wigwe

For eight years until May 2022, Dr. Wigwe led Access Bank Plc as its Group Managing Director and Chief Executive Officer through an extraordinary growth period. Some of the accolades accorded him include Banker of the Year, 2020 by Leadership Awards; African Banker of the Year, 2021 by African Banker Award; and Best Banking CEO, 2021 by Global Brands Magazine Awards.

Access Corporation operates through a network of more than 600 branches and service outlets, spanning three continents, 18 countries, and over 50million customers managed by over 28,000 employees. Access Bank, the Corporation’s banking business, is one of Africa’s largest retail banks by customer base and total assets.

A passionate advocate for the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals, Dr. Wigwe speaks frequently at business forums and conventions, strongly encouraging a global business commitment to the achievement of the Goals.
In his role as Group Managing Director of Access Bank Plc, Dr. Wigwe was the first African sponsor of the United Nations Global Compact Initiative.

A Board member of Nigeria’s Business Coalition Against AIDS which leads major businesses in Nigeria in fighting HIV and AIDS at all levels of intervention within the health system and the private sector workforce. Similarly, he advocated for the eradication of malaria in Africa, and is a partner of the Corporate Alliance on Malaria in Africa to achieve this objective.

Dr. Wigwe’s commitment to the development of Nigeria and Africa extends to numerous initiatives. At the onset of the COVID-19 global crisis, for example, Dr. Wigwe swiftly responded to Nigeria’s private and public healthcare’s inability to respond effectively by galvanizing support for and co-leading the formation of CACOVID (Coalition Against COVID-19) comprised of the Central Bank of Nigeria; major financial institutions in Nigeria; and key stakeholders in Nigeria’s private sector. Dr. Wigwe led the Coalition to support the Federal Government in mitigating the impact of the pandemic and reopening the economy.

Dr. Wigwe, Access Bank and UNICEF collaborate to support vulnerable children, orphans, and internationally displaced persons in the northern part of Nigeria. To raise awareness and funds for this purpose, the Bank organizes and hosts annual high-profile Access Bank/UNICEF Charity Shield Polo Tournaments in Nigeria, London, and South Africa.
In 2023, Dr. Wigwe embarked on a transformative journey by founding Wigwe University. With a vision to ignite Africa’s potential for prosperity and nurture fearless leaders who will change the course of history, he has introduced an institution that is set to rival top universities around the world.
Wigwe University promises to elevate educational standards while creating a unique African experience. Dr. Wigwe believes that education is the key to unlocking Africa’s potential and through Wigwe University, he seeks to leave a legacy that will contribute immensely to the continent’s greatness.
His commitment to education is rooted in the belief that nurturing intellectual capital is pivotal for societal development.
Dr. Wigwe envisions Wigwe University as a beacon of knowledge, innovation, and excellence, designed to empower future leaders and contribute to the socio-economic advancement of the continent. This endeavour represents his profound dedication to shaping a brighter future for Africa, making education the cornerstone of his enduring legacy.
In 2023, in recognition of exemplary service to his country, Dr. Wigwe was awarded the Commander of the Order of the Federal Republic – one of the nation’s top honours.

Dr. Wigwe is an alumnus of the Harvard Business School Executive Management Programme. He holds Honorary Doctorate degrees from the University of Port Harcourt, Gombe State University and University of Nigeria, Master’s Degrees in Law, Banking and International Finance, and Financial Economics from the University of London, University of North Wales and University of London, respectively.
He also holds a Bachelor of Science Degree in Accounting from the University of Nigeria, Nsukka

Dr Wigwe’s death on Friday in a helicopter crash in California,United States left many devastated, Nigeria indeed has lost a guru.

Recall ,United States (U.S.) Federal Aviation Administration (FAA), on Saturday, confirmed the crash of a helicopter carrying six passengers in a Southern California desert near Las Vegas.

Herbert Wigwe, the Chief Executive Officer of Access Holdings was reportedly on board with five others believed to be his wife, son and Abimbola Ogunbanjo, the Group Chairman of Nigerian Exchange Group Plc and all of them died in the crash.

According to FAA, the crash occurred on Friday around 10 p.m. local time near Nipton, California.

Author: Maureen Ikpeama

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *