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Covid-19 resilience, innovation wins Stanbic Bank top award

Financial services institution, Stanbic Bank, has been awarded the ‘2020 bank of the year’ accolade for the second year running by top banking magazine – The Banker.

A Stanbic Bank (Zimbabwe) branch at Sam Levy's village in Borrowdale Harare (Picture via Sam Levy's)
A Stanbic Bank (Zimbabwe) branch at Sam Levy’s village in Borrowdale Harare (Picture via Sam Levy’s)

Stanbic was recognised for its resilience and innovation in the face of the operational challenges brought about by the menacing Covid-19, which has caused havoc world-wide.

The pandemic presented the banking sector with challenges beyond any previous experience and Stanbic Bank was commended for “providing stability and putting the needs of its clients and employees at the forefront of its operations”.

The Standard Bank Group subsidiary’s award comes barely a month after winning the Best Bank in Zimbabwe at the African Banking Awards hosted by financial services journal, Europe, Middle East and Africa (EMEA) Finance.

The Banker is a member of the Financial Times Group renowned for being one of the trusted sources of global banking information.

Last year Stanbic Bank won the award, regarded as the industry standard for assessing banks globally since 1926, together with stable countries South Africa, Lesotho, Zambia, and Angola.

“The industry has been at the forefront of providing stability and access to vital services at this critical time. The judges this year have placed particular emphasis on which banks have led the way in meeting client needs and maintaining resilience in the face of the pandemic,” said The Banker, which celebrates 95 years in January 2021.

“A rigorous and highly analytical process is made to reach each Bank of the Year decision and our reputation for independence, authority and integrity is applied to each submission.”

Stanbic Bank chief executive, Mr Joshua Tapambgwa, said the institution had to adopt an “It can be” attitude in the face of Covid-19 and was determined not to let their clients and employees down.

“Covid-19 was an unknown virus which took all and sundry by surprise and we really had to think on our toes with our clients and employees in mind. As much as most of our staff members had to work from home, the fact that we are an essential service gave us the determination to overcome our fears of the pandemic, knuckle down and work for our clients,” said Mr Tapambgwa.

Stanbic Bank has also procured protective clothing and sanitisers worth US$200 000 for frontline workers from six referral hospitals and Covid-19 centres throughout the country.

The bank further provided US$2.8 million worth of credit and allocation of foreign currency to clients in the medical and associated industries to facilitate the acquisition of health care items to help fight the pandemic. St Anne’s Hospital, Wilkins Hospital in Harare, Gweru Provincial Hospital, Masvingo Provincial, Thorngrove and Mutare Infectious hospitals were among the beneficiaries of the bank’s donations. The Chronicle.