KCB names Rwandan unit boss National Bank MD

Mr George Odhiambo

Mr George Odhiambo, the outgoing managing director of BPR Bank Plc Rwanda, who now takes charge of the National Bank of Kenya. PHOTO | COURTESY

KCB Group has picked the managing director of its subsidiary Banque Populaire du Rwanda (BPR), George Odhiambo, as the new MD for the National Bank of Kenya.

He replaces acting NBK boss Peter Kioko, who was picked in June last year after Paul Russo was named KCB Group CEO, taking over from Joshua Oigara, who retired.

Mr Kioko was the director of finance and strategy at the KCB Kenyan subsidiary.

Read: NBK names finance director as acting MD to replace Paul Russo

Mr Odhiambo is credited with turning around the Rwandan operations and was appointed to lead its merger with Banque Populaire du Rwanda (BPR) in April last year.

He has been replaced by Patience Mutesi, who until last week was the Rwanda country director of TradeMark East Africa, a role she has held since July 2016. Ms Mutesi will take charge of BPR effective February 1, 2023.

“We are delighted to have Patience on board, and particularly pleased with the experience she will bring with her invaluable background in Finance and Trade Development,” said BPR chairman George Rubagumya in a statement.

“On behalf of staff, management, and board, I would like to thank George for his undivided commitment during his time as Managing Director. I believe we are in a strong financial position to foster our desired momentum in the coming years. I wish him all the best in his future endeavours,” he added.

BPR Rwanda Plc is currently the second-largest lender in Rwanda, after local lender — Bank of Kigali Plc Ltd.

Read: KCB’s stake in Rwanda unit rises by 10.8pc after merger

Joining KCB

Mr Odhiambo joined KCB Rwanda in 2009 as head of the business analytics and transformation project. He was promoted to head of Retail Banking in 2013 and to managing director in 2017.

After the KCB Bank merger with BPR last year, he was picked to lead the operations.

His replacement, Ms Mutesi, was the head of corporate banking at Ecobank Rwanda prior to joining TradeMark. She has been a non-executive member of BPR Bank Rwanda Plc, MTN Rwandacell Plc and Rwanda Cooperation.

She holds an MBA in finance from Maastricht School of Management in the Netherlands and a BSc Honours in Quantitative Economics from Makerere University in Uganda. She is an Eisenhower Fellow and an alumnus of the Swedish Institute Management Programme.

BPR upgraded its core banking system last week as part of the last mile of merging operations.

KCB, which is listed on the Nairobi Securities Exchange, reported a 20.9 percent growth in net profit in the nine months ended September last year to Sh30.6 billion, up from Sh25.2 billion last year.

The contribution of group businesses, which excludes KCB Bank Kenya, stood at 16.3 percent, up from 15.2 percent driven by new businesses and the impact of BPR acquisition, according to official statements by the lender.