Absa names first ever black CEO

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Newly appointed Absa Group CEO Daniel Mminele.
Newly appointed Absa Group CEO Daniel Mminele. PHOTO/COURTESY: biznews.com

Daniel Mminele is set to become Absa Group’s first ever black Chief Executive Officer after the lender’s board of directors handpicked him to replace interim CEO René van Wyk. Mr. Van Wyk took over from then Absa CEO Maria Ramos in February 2019 after she announced her retirement.

The appointment which will take effect on January 15, will see Mr. Mminele administer South Africa’s third largest lender as it continues expansion into foreign African markets in line with the bank’s strategy.

 “In terms of his starting point, Mr. Mminele will want to assess where we are in implementing our strategy and assess how he can play a role in strengthening the team’s ability to continue on that journey. As a leader, he will make his own assessment of what is required but he has a complete open mandate as the CEO to lead this organisation,” Wendy Lucas-Bull, the chairperson of Absa’s Board of Directors said in a statement.

On his part, the new Absa Group CEO expressed optimism on taking up the new role.

“I am delighted to be joining the Absa group. I look forward to being part of and leading the exciting journey that Absa has embarked upon to fully establish itself as an African financial services group with deep roots across the continent and a global reach,” Mr. Mminele said in a statement.

Prior to his appointment, Mr. Mminele served for two five-year terms as the Deputy Governor of South Africa’s Reserve Bank (SARB). He retired in June 2019 after his term as deputy governor came to an end.

Speculation that Mminele was to succeed Maria Ramos began soon after Ms. Ramos announced her retirement in February 2019 after 10 years at the helm of the bank which was for most of her tenure a subsidiary of British banking giant, Barclays Plc. Prior to her departure, Ms. Ramos successfully steered the company as it broke off from mother company Barclays Plc.

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