World’s Best Private Banks 2023: Africa

Global Finance presents the best private banks in Africa.


The face of private wealth in Africa is changing fast. Although African wealth declined by 7% over the past decade, according to the Africa Wealth Report 2022 by London-based investment consultancy Henley & Partners, the long-term outlook is positive. Total African private wealth is forecast to rise by 38% over the next decade to hit $3 trillion, according to the report.

Today, rising stars like Mauritius and the Seychelles are challenging the dominance of traditional wealth holders like South Africa, Egypt and Morocco. “The rise of frontier economies and megacities, along with the diversification of wealth-creating sources are just some of the trends driving the creation, flow and preservation of capital across the continent,” comments venture capitalist Vusi Thembekwayo in the report.

Already, investments in digital transformation, pursuit of growth opportunities such as offshore banking, new efforts in mitigating wealth-erosion risks, and other initiatives show banks in Africa are borrowing templates from global pacesetters.


BEST PRIVATE BANK IN AFRICA

Attijariwafa Private Bank

Private banking is big business for Morocco-based Attijariwafa Bank. Headquartered in a country with 5,000 high net worth individuals (HNWIs) and $125 billion in total private wealth, the bank has a huge domestic market and is replicating success there across 15 African markets. In Morocco, Attijariwafa controls nearly half of the private banking market—$8.9 billion in assets.

In Africa, the bank is building a base concentrating largely on the North and West African regions, in its “@mbitions2025” strategic plan. Built on principles of innovation, agility and strong relationships, the plan is designed to meet changing needs in the private wealth market. To ensure success, the bank is leveraging digital and big-data technologies while aligning to best international standards in terms of operational efficiency, risk control and compliance.

BEST PRIVATE BANK FOR SUSTAINABLE INVESTING

FirstBank

With a deep appreciation of clients’ investment objectives, risk appetites and life cycle stages, and a holistic view of the prevailing financial environment, FirstBank is keenly focusing on sustainable investing. In 2021, transactions valued at $14 billion were screened across a whole spectrum of environmental, social and governance metrics. FirstBank prides itself on $34.8 million in assets under management (AUM) and 2,000 clients with an average net worth of $2 million. The bank understands that customizing wealth management solutions with a bias toward sustainable investing is a masterstroke not only in growing wealth for clients but also in strengthening client loyalty and retention

BEST PRIVATE BANK DIGITAL SOLUTIONS FOR CLIENTS

Fidelity Bank

After a comprehensive review of its technology, Fidelity Bank redesigned its digital infrastructure to support organic growth strategies. The efforts have paid off. The bank posted 58% and 15.7% growth in AUM for 2020 and 2021, respectively. In 2021, AUM stood at $252 million, up from $217.8 million the previous year. Apart from AUM, the overhaul has been instrumental in market share growth. The upgraded digital platforms provide end-to-end self-service features for various products. In effect, the increased levels of accessibility have proven appealing, particularly to the upwardly mobile new generation breaking into the HNW and ultrahigh net worth brackets. Digital platforms have also reduced the costs of wealth management services.   

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