Awards for Excellence: Africa
Best regional banks: Citibank, Standard Chartered
With the demise of Meridien BIAO in 1996, the only native bank on the African continent to have expanded significantly outside its own country is South Africa's Standard Bank and it was part of Standard Chartered until 1987. It is represented in 14 countries in sub-Saharan Africa, with much of its expansion outside South Africa achieved through acquisition. It bought the ANZ Grindlays Africa operations in 1992, Meridien BIAO Tanzania in 1995 and also the Lesotho branch of Barclays bank.
However, in terms of profitability, local market innovation and cross-border wholesale banking Standard Bank is still some way behind the two leading institutions on the continent that tie for our best bank award - Citibank and Standard Chartered.