Ghana International Bank partners with Jaywing for regulatory compliance

10 April 2018

The UK arm of Ghana International Bank has entered into a partnership with Jaywing, a UK-based risk specialist consulting firm, to develop improvements in its operational response to regulatory change. The firm will specifically assist with credit grading and corporate banking programmes. 

While banks across the world are still recovering from the Global Financial Crisis that rocked the financial world a decade ago, banks in Africa are thriving. A report from management consultancy McKinsey & Company earlier this year revealed that ROEs on the continent are currently just under 15%, compared to the global average of 8.6%.

However, a key component of success is an international scope of operations, which brings with it the issues that are plaguing banks across the world. While digital disruption is a worldwide phenomena, one extra burden that banks operating in Europe now have is ensuring compliance with GDPR and IFRS 9 regulations.

Ghana International Bank (GHIB) is one African bank that is now having to contend with European woes. The bank originated as the Ghana Commercial Bank, which opened an outlet in London in 1959. The London outlet was subsequently acquired by the Ghana International Bank, which is owned, for the most part, by the Ghanaian government.

The bank offers personal and commercial banking services, leveraging its presence on the African continent to offer an integrated approach to banking. In another example of the Ghanaian public sector turning to the consulting industry, the bank has now employed the services of Jaywing to assist with regulatory compliance, among other functions.

Ghana International Bank + Jaywing

Specifically, Jaywing will assist GHIB with IFRS 9; an international regulatory framework for financial reporting and accounting, which covers three main aspects of reporting, namely the classification and measurement of financial instruments, the impairment of financial assets, and hedge accounting.

The framework has been adopted this year, which has put additional pressure on financial institutions operating in Europe such as GHIB. Anticipating the struggle for regulatory compliance, Jaywing devised a comprehensive solution to IFRS 9, which, incidentally, matches the magnitude of GHIB’s operations.

Jaywing will also assist GHIB with a number of other important functions, including the devising of a more nuanced credit grading system, improvement and optimisation of provisioning policy, designing infrastructure, as well as creating effective strategies for the bank going forward.

Commenting on the project, Bill Eagleton, Chief Risk Officer at GHIB said, “At GHIB we place a great deal of emphasis on the importance of compliance and having robust banking practices. We were impressed with Jaywing’s approach to protecting and enhancing our credit grading framework and look forward to partnering with them as we continue to develop bespoke solutions in an ever-changing environment.”

Head of Capital and Regulations Practice at Jaywing, Chris Rollason added, “We’re delighted to be partnering with GHIB to help futureproof its credit grading framework and bolster the Bank’s existing policies across its core services. Getting more granular with credit gradings, particularly in a market characterised by high competition and increasing credit risk, it will help GHIB to selectively grow its loan portfolio and to improve both Risk Management and profitability.”

Founded in 2006, Jaywing is a consulting firm with a firm grounding in data science, which, alongside a strong expertise in compliance with data regulations such as GDPR, offers services in brand management & strategy, artificial intelligence and the PR & media domain. 

Mercer and Alexander Forbes launch Arrive financial services programme in Kenya

05 April 2019

Pan-African financial advisory firm Alexander Forbes has entered into a partnership with global health and wealth management consultancy Mercer to develop a financial solutions programme by the name of “Arrive” for individuals in Kenya as well as across the entire continent.

While foreign investment has been on the rise in Africa – given that the region boasts a substantial and young population and a number of resource-rich economies that are looking to diversify – a number of firms have struggled with developing products and solutions that are suitable across the wide variety of economies and cultures on the continent.

Several consulting firms have rushed in to support with this integration process, and the Arrive programme is designed with precisely such an objective in mind. The programme – to be developed jointly by Alexander Forbes and Mercer – is designed to help international firms with tailoring solutions across African markets.

Mercer and Alexander Forbes launch Arrive financial services programme in Kenya

The solution will take into consideration the various regulatory and economic conditions of each country, while endowing its services with knowledge from international best practices in the domain of health, wealth and career management. The collaboration comes at a time when firms across Africa are struggling with digital and regulatory disruption.

Mercer has come to be increasingly active in supporting this transition across the continent, through a number of collaborations. Just earlier this year, the firm announced a strategic partnership with Learning Organisation in Ghana to offer comprehensive HR solutions in the country.

Commenting on the partnership, Peter Botha, CEO of Mercer Africa said, “With Arrive employers can enjoy improved efficiency, easy decision-making and affordability from a single point of contact while enabling employees to arrive at financial well-being, a rewarding career and better health throughout their life journey.”

Dawie de Villiers, Group Chief Executive at Alexander Forbes added, “Because each country has its own regulatory and benefit rules, it makes it difficult for multinationals to standardise benefits when operating in multiple jurisdictions and countries.”