Jim Ovia, renowned as Nigeria’s richest banker and a pivotal figure in the country’s banking industry, has witnessed a substantial increase in the market value of his stake in Zenith Bank — this reflects growing confidence in the bank’s strategic moves in the financial services industry.
Ovia, ranked among Africa’s affluent individuals, has recorded a remarkable surge of N27.18 billion ($29.85 million) in the market value of his stake in Zenith Bank over three weeks — fueled by heightened investors’ interest in shares of the prominent financial services group.
Zenith Bank’s stock surges by 13.8 percent, pushing market cap above $1.5 billion
Zenith Bank, licensed as a commercial bank by the Central Bank of Nigeria, not only stands out as a leading financial services provider in Nigeria and anglophone West Africa but also holds the title of Nigeria’s most profitable bank. It also ranks as the largest listed financial services group on the Nigerian Exchange.
The recent surge in Zenith Bank’s shares on the Nigerian Exchange, climbing from N38.65 ($0.042) on Jan. 1 to N44.00 ($0.048), signifies a gain of more than 13 percent, thus propelling the bank’s market capitalization above $1.5 billion and delivering substantial returns to shareholders — this includes Ovia, who owns a significant stake in the Lagos-based lender.
A closer look at Nigeria’s banking icon and Zenith Bank founder’s $29.8-million gain
Ovia, a key figure in Nigeria’s banking industry’s evolution and digital transformation, founded Zenith Bank in 1990. His 16.2-percent stake in the financial services group, comprising 5,072,104,311 ordinary shares, makes him the wealthiest banker in the country.
According to data tracked by Billionaires.Africa, the market value of Ovia’s stake has increased by N27.18 billion ($29.85 million) over the past three weeks, surging from N196.39 billion ($215.64 million) on Jan. 1 to N223.58 billion ($245.48 million) at the time of writing.
Ovia’s recent gain of $29.85 million cements his position as Nigeria’s wealthiest banker and underscores his success as a prominent businessman in the country. His leadership is expected to further boost Zenith Bank’s financial performance, consolidating its position as a leading player in the financial services sector.