UBA group launches full banking operations in the UK

By Edwin Muhumuza

United Bank of Africa (UBA) has launched full banking operations in the global financial city of London. Now UBA UK, courtesy of authorization by the Prudential Regulation Authority(PRA) and the Financial Conduct Authority(FCA) ,the Bank will carry out full scale wholesale banking across the United Kingdom.

As UBA Group further consolidates its unique positioning as the first and only Sub-Saharan African financial institution with banking operations in both the United Kingdom and the United States, it continues to reinforce its strength as Africa’s Global Bank, facilitating trade and capital flows between Africa and the world.

The Group Chairman, Mr. Tony Elumelu said the Group is excited by the authorization by the relevant regulatory authorities in the United Kingdom to upgrade its operation and further fulfil its aspiration of deepening trade and investments flows between Africa and Europe.

“The enhancement of our business in the United Kingdom is very timely and mutually beneficial for African and European corporates as well as respective governments. With the British and other European governments seeking new and improved measures to grow trade relations with Africa, we are enthusiastic on our positioning and capabilities in supporting corporates and government institutions to fulfil these lofty aspirations, which we believe are pertinent for the sustainable growth of both continents.”Elumelu noted.

This development comes three weeks after the UBA group launched its operations in Mali.

At the upscale ceremony which was held at The Prestigious Shard in the city of London, UBA UK was formerly introduced to business leaders across Europe and Africa with a commitment from the UBA Group of its readiness to galvanise trade and commerce between Europe and Africa.

Also speaking at the event, The Group Managing Director/CEO, Mr. Kennedy Uzoka, said “Simultaneously, we are serving the trade and capital needs of our African customers, who are seeking exposure to the European markets. With the upgrade of UBA UK Limited, we are excited to deepen our support to existing customers whilst also providing the leverage for new customers to effectively fulfil their cross-border transactions through UBA Group’s network.”

“With our expansion in London, African countries trade barriers with the UK have been reduced and we now expect top African exporters to the UK will take advantage of the new bank,” said Mr Uzoka in London during the official launch.

He urged investors in the UK to take advantage of the London based Pan African bank to do direct foreign investment in Africa especially in the 20 African countries where UBA bank operates

The CEO, UBA UK, Mr. Patrick Gutmann, said; “We are now on a stronger footing, as the authorization of the PRA and FCA for an enhanced business model affords us the opportunity to swell our capital and balance sheet as well as the broader UBA Group’s network across Africa. We welcome our existing and new customers to this new world of borderless opportunities, as we creatively serve our customers in meeting their international transaction needs.”

Some of the guests In attendance at the event were the President of Dangote Group; Alhaji Aliko Dangote, President; Afreximbank, Dr. Benedict Oramah; Former Prime Minister of Pakistan, H.E Shaukat Aziz; Member of the British House of Lords and Executive Committee.

Member of the All Party Africa Group, Rt. Hon Lord Anthony Tudor St. John, amongst many others. The event was not short on entertainment as one of Africa’s leading entertainers Dbanj performed to the admiration of guests including Star boy, musicician, Wiz Kid.

Young entrepreneurs given push to pursue business dreams

By Edwin Muhumuza

Thousands of young entrepreneurs in Uganda are gearing up for 2019 cohort of the TEF Entrepreneurship Programme. This is courtesy of the Tony Elumelu Foundation, the leading African-funded and founded philanthropy committed to empowering African entrepreneurs. Also involved is the United Bank of Africa(UBA)which has facilitated over 60 entrepreneurs who want to benefit from this initiative .

The head of Retail and SME,UBA, Paul Luyima, says they are targeting over 5000 daring entrepreneurs so as to increase their chances of winning.

‘’We are trying to prepare them or polish them, their proposals and approaches so that by the time they submit in,they will be considered.’’ He adds that ,’’this year is different and as UBA, we have decided to support the entrepreneurs ,call them in, try to highlight a few areas they need to consider and we have also decided to invite alumni to give them tips on how to succeed.’’

Kenneth Twesigye, owns a company called TechBuzz Hub, now three years old. He says they give life to entrepreneurship, innovation and start ups. As a previous winner, he hailed the TEF program for the mentorship training.

He says one must be shrewd enough to defend their application, must be a go-getter, have an entrepreneurial element, be committed and lastly the applicant must be able to scan the environment; creative, innovative, very ready to see a problem and suggest a solution so as to succeed.

Twesigye reveals that he was selected in 2016 and went through the training, mentor-ship and did business planning and financial planning, still under the guidance of TEP and thereafter they were given the money. It has been two full years since inception of his company and currently he has a contract with government to support young entrepreneurs in the IT sector and has 13 entrepreneurs that they harbor as company ,among other initiatives.

Now in its 5th year, the TEF Entrepreneurship Programme has empowered 4,470 entrepreneurs, using a bespoke and robust selection, training and implementation process to create visible and sustainable impact across all 54 African countries.

In 2018 over 2,210 Ugandans entrepreneurs applied for the program, ranking Uganda the third highest after Nigeria and Kenya in submissions. Over 126 Ugandan applicants were successful and received n the USD 5000, seed capital in 2018. Since inception over 300 Ugandan entrepreneurs have benefited from the program.

The other thing about the work shop is the entrepreneurs were told about the readiness of UBA to support their journey through positioning themselves from day one to ensure that they achieve along with the bank, Luyima said.

Every year the foundation opens up a portal for people to submit and through the marketing department, a message is sent through social media to invite those who would like to benefit from the Tony Elumelu Foundation .The Programme is a 10-year, $100 million commitment to identify, train, mentor and fund 10,000 African entrepreneurs with an objective to generate at least 1,000,000 new jobs and create at least $10 billion in new business revenue across Africa.

UBA Foundation launches Each one Teach one’ initiative

By Edwin Muhumuza

United Bank of Africa(UBA) Uganda through the UBA Foundation, the arm of the bank charged with Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) has launched the ‘Each One Teach One’ Initiative designed to benefit youths in Africa.

The purpose of the Each One Teach One Initiative is to create opportunities where UBA staff across the continent voluntarily commit their time to their communities, teaching youths various skills such as cooking, agriculture, foreign languages, photography, fashion design, music, reading, writing and much more, to empower youths with knowledge, which in future will facilitate their financial independence and support enterprenual development.

In Uganda, the team launched the project at Bugema Adventist Secondary School where UBA staff donated literature books, agricultural material, planted trees and trained students on financial literacy and entrepreneurship.

The ‘Each One Teach One’ initiative will be rolled out across the country in areas of operation.

‘We believe the youth are the future of this country and the education they receive does not singlehandedly prepare them to succeed in the future. Through the UBA foundation and the ‘Each One Teach One Initiative’, we hope to give the youth a head start by equipping them with the necessary skills to succeed,’ said Johnson Agoreyo, the UBA Uganda Managing Director and CEO.

According to officials at the Bank,UBA Foundation through its four major areas of focus – education, environment, economic empowerment and special projects will continue to positively impact the lives of Uganda youths and communities.

United Bank for Africa (UBA) is one of Africa’s leading financial institutions, with operations in 20 countries and 3 global financial centers: London, Paris and New York.UBA has evolved into a Pan-African, provider of banking and related financial services through diverse channels globally.

United Bank for Africa Uganda represents UBA’s pioneer country activities in the East and Southern African sub-region. With a growing network of branches and ATMs across the country, the bank continues to expand the retail and commercial playing field in Uganda by delivering unique financial products and solutions.

UBA banking officer arrested for forging academic documents

Makerere University Police are investigating a former staff of United Bank of Africa accused of forging academic transcripts of Makerere University Business School-MUBS. The suspect is Godfrey Moses Kasibante, the former Risk Officer at United Bank of Africa.

Kasibante was picked up on Friday last week from the Senate building for allegedly forging academic transcripts of Makerere University Business School-MUBS showing that he is a graduate of Bachelor of Business Administration. He recorded a statement at Makerere University Police and was released on police bond.

Police swung into action on a tip off from Makerere University Academic Registrar, Alfred Masikye Namoah.  Before joining UBA as a Risk Officer six months ago, Kasibante worked at New Vision. According to information obtained by URN from Makerere University Police, UBA asked staff to submit their full academic papers for confirmation of employment.

As a result, the bank authorities took Kasibante’s academic transcript to Makerere University for verification but his registration number 07/U/3826/EVE couldn’t be traced in the system. The university decided to file a case of forgery and impersonation at Makerere University police, which was recorded under SD 12/27/01/17.

“On Friday we were alerted by the academic registrar that this man was claiming to have rightfully attained qualifications from MUBS. The bank had come with him to verify his papers and they found he had fake documents. We arrested the man and he has confirmed that there is someone who made for him the transcript. We are now investigating the matter to establish the details,” said Denis Kasibante, the Officer in Charge of Makerere University Police.

Adding that; “We are left with recording statements from the human resource manager of the bank and the academic registrar to conclude the file and proceed to court. Only that the academic registrar has not yet found time to record his statement. But we are still pursuing him because we cannot conclude the file without the statements.”

The accused couldn’t be traced by URN for a comment on the matter.