The Ghana Amalgamated Trust (GAT) has appointed Mr Albert Essien, formerly of Ecobank and Mr Eric Nana Otoo, formerly of Goldman Sachs, Mckinsey and Duet as its Board Chairman and Managing Director (MD) respectively.
A press statement issued from GAT on Tuesday named the other members of the top management team as; Ms Susan Ohene, formerly of Ecobank Transnational Incorporate (ETI), Mr Sampson Akligoh, the Director of Financial Sector Division at the Ministry of Finance, and Ms Abenaa Kessewaa Brown, a Principal of the National Banking College (NBC) and Director of Consolidated Bank Ghana Limited.
It said Messrs Essien and Otoo will leverage their track records to build a team that would lead the transformation process in the five banks that GAT would be supporting.
GAT, a special purpose vehicle (SPV) backed by the government, was incorporated in December 2018 to raise up to GH¢2 billion and invest in five indigenous banks.
They are the state-owned ADB Bank and National Investment Bank (NIB). The rest are Universal Merchant Bank (UMB), Prudential Bank and OmniBank, which is merging with Sahel Sahara Bank.
Profile of Essien
The release described Mr Essien as a seasoned banker with about 30 years experience in banking.
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It said he served as the Group Chief Executive Officer of Ecobank Transnational Incorporated (ETI) from March 12, 2014 to June 30, 2015 during which he led major business transformation programmes.
Prior to that, the release said he served as Deputy Chief Executive Officer of Ecobank Transnational Incorporated from January 1, 2012 to March 12, 2014.
It said Mr Essien started his career in 1986 at the National Investment Bank (NIB) before joining Ecobank Ghana in 1990.
“At Ecobank, Mr Essien served in various roles, including Corporate Banking and Risk Management before becoming Deputy Managing Director in 2001 and Managing Director from 2002,” its said.
It added that Mr Essien is an honorary fellow of the Chartered Institute of Bankers, Ghana, and holds a B.A. (Honors) in Economics from the University of Ghana.
He is an alumnus of the Executive Development Program of the prestigious INSEAD (France/Singapore) and a World Fellow of the Duke of Edinburgh Award.
Mr Essien is currently the Independent Non-Executive Director at Old Mutual Ltd., South Africa.
He was also the Board Chairman of GHL Bank, which was taken over by First National Bank Ghana Limited at the tail end of December 2018.
Profile of Otoo
The release said Mr Otoo had about 15 years experience in investment banking, consulting and private equity, having worked with Goldman Sachs, Mckinsey and Duet, among others.
“His experience in Finance was honed at Goldman Sachs & Co.’s New York City office from 2007, where his responsibilities included coordinating and managing origination, valuation, acquisition and due diligence for investment transactions.
In 2006 and later between 2010 and 2013, he worked as a strategy consultant at McKinsey’s New York City office, where he worked with senior executives and boards across different industries on various strategic, finance and operational issues,” the statement said.
It explained that his work involved transformation programmes at some of the major US banks and the broader financial services sector.
It said he was recently a Director at Duet Private Equity where he managed companies in the firm’s investment portfolio with additional duties, including finding new investment opportunities.
While there, he worked closely with senior management of the portfolio companies to develop and implement strategies and improve business performance.
“Mr Otoo received his Master of Business Administration (MBA) from Harvard Business School with second year honors as a Jack Kent Cooke Scholar.
“He also has certifications as a Chartered Financial Analyst (CFA), a Certified Management Accountant (CMA), and a Certified Financial Manager (CFM).
Mr Otoo attended Grinnell College in the US for his undergraduate studies where he received majors in Economics and Computer Science with Phi Beta Kappa honors,” it added.