Finishing school for African bankers
The banking sector has lost so much confidence in the public education system that many of the leading players have launched their own finishing schools. For Cecilia Ibru, managing director of Oceanic, human resources is a key challenge. "We have set up a foundation to finance a private university," she says. "This is on top of our three training sectors, which are going full-time every day except Sundays. The world is now a knowledge-based economy. If we want trained people, we have to train them ourselves."
Across town in Lagos, Access Bank has equally ambitious plans. "We are in the process of building our own university, just across the road. It will be the equivalent of what Google has in Bangalore," says Herbert Wigwe, deputy chairman of Access Bank.
The bank already has 500 people who will be given a five-month training course, the equivalent of a banking MBA. Once the university has been constructed – groundbreaking is scheduled for next year – the university will aim to turn out 1,500 people a year.