As part of its continued support of UNICEF, Access Bank Group, along with 5th Chukker, The Access Bank UK and Access Private Bank hosted the ‘Access Bank Polo Day’ at the Guards Polo Club, Windsor on Saturday 16th July 2016.
The annual event follows on from the high-profile Access Bank/UNICEF Charity Shield Polo tournament which is now in its ninth year. Access Banks’s on-going sponsorship of the event aims to support vulnerable children and orphans and internationally displaced persons in Nigeria. This year the Bank donated an additional N10-million (£27,000) to UNICEF for its campaign against HIV/AIDS among Nigerian children.
With over 400 attendees, the renowned ‘Access Bank Polo Day’, was held on a pleasant day at the prestigious Guards polo club. This year’s tournament was also attended by some of the most distinguished dignitaries including, Herbert Wigwe, Chairman of Access Bank, Ms Evelyn Oputu, Dr Ajoritsedere Josephine Awosika, Mr Farouk Saleh, Mr Tajudeen Dantata, MrTunde Folawiyo, Ms Mosunmola Bello-Olusoga (Plc’s Chairman), Mrs Jummai Chindaya, Mrs Nonye Soludo, Mrs Tolu Demuren and Ono Bello.
The initiative between UNICEF and Access Bank since inception has produced two new schools and has supported communities with bore-holes for water and sewing and grinding machines to secure employment and stimulate economic and social development. Mr Wigwe highlighted this achievement by explaining “We are conscious of our role as a change agent in Nigeria that can help institute socio-economic development through responsible business practice and environmental considerations. In addition, we are continually seeking ways through which more resources can be pooled towards supporting the children. We are part of the community and as such should support its wellbeing”.
In what was a thrilling polo match, The Access Bank Charity Cup resulted in a draw between Kangimi Resorts and Access Bank Fifth Chukka. Kangimi Resorts was represented by Adolfito Cambiaso Jnr the son of the world number one Adolfo Cabiaso, Babangida Hassan, David Sterling and Pablo MacDonough. The Access Bank Fifth Chukka team was represented by Adolfo Cambiaso, Mia Cambiaso, Adamu Mahmoud Atta and Juan Martin Nero. Delaney Colours represented by Damian Duncan, Jose Araya, Pite Merlos and Matias Benoit won the Emir’s Cup against Keffi Ponies whose team members included, Ahmed Wadada, Babangida Hassan, Diego White and Manuel Fernandez Llorente.
The event which was once again a huge success, is organised by Access Bank UK Limited which has just published its Annual Report for the year ended December 31, 2015. This shows impressive growth indicators including an increase in operating income of 31% from £15-million in 2014 to £19.7-million. The Banks’s profit before tax grew by 72% to £8.6-million, while its post-tax profit was up 74% to £6.8million. Jamie Simmonds the Managing Director of the Bank commented “We are now in our second five year plan that embodies our principles of relationship-based banking, growing our business through the depth and quality of customer relationships, while at the same time maintaining a moderate appetite for risk. Our objective is to grow the international business of Access Bank Group through customer service excellence, and innovative solutions in trade finance, commercial banking and asset management.”
Drawing attention to the Bank’s 2015 highlights, Jamie Simmonds added: “In 2015 we launched an operation in the UAE, introduced a high net worth regulated execution only mortgage product and unveiled an on-line retail savings product. Our achievements owe a great deal to the strong partnership that we have with our parent company, as evidenced by our joint support of the fifth Access Bank Day at the Guards Polo Club in Windsor.”
Access Bank PLC Group Managing Director and Chairman of The Access Bank UK Ltd, Herbert Wigwe paid tribute to the UK operation by saying:
“The Access Bank UK has become the business we always envisaged it would. Founded on a model of excellent service and moderate risk appetite it has grown income, increased profit and delivers a healthy return on equity. Importantly it is adding value to Access Bank Group and enhancing the Group’s stature on the international stage”.