FNBL poised for growth: CEO

Lesotho Times - - Business - Bereng Mpaki

FIRST Na­tional Bank Le­sotho (FNBL) Chief Ex­ec­u­tive Of­fi­cer Martin Knollys says he has a “per­sonal mis­sion” to en­sure Ba­sotho de­rive max­i­mum ben­e­fit from the fi­nan­cial in­sti­tu­tion’s ser­vices.

Mr Knollys told the Le­sotho Times this week that his ap­point­ment to the helm of FNBL last Septem­ber was a “home­com­ing of sorts” as he once stayed in the Moun­tain King­dom dur­ing his for­ma­tive years.

“it is a home-com­ing of sorts for me to work in le­sotho be­cause my par­ents were liv­ing in Maseru when i was born in 1972, al­though I was de­liv­ered in Bloem­fontein,” he said.

“i lived in le­sotho for three more years af­ter i was born. Ob­vi­ously, i don’t re­mem­ber much about this beau­ti­ful coun­try dur­ing that time, since i left as a small boy. But, it still feels like a home­com­ing mo­ment for me.”

Mr Knollys said FNBL had made sig­nif­i­cant strides in grow­ing its mar­ket share since the bank’s es­tab­lish­ment in le­sotho 12 years ago. The in­sti­tu­tion cur­rently has eight branches in five low­land dis­tricts of the coun­try, with plans to build more in the other dis­tricts soon. The bank also has an auto teller ma­chine ( ATM) com­ple­ment of 50 around the coun­try.

“My in­ten­tion is to serve in this ca­pac­ity for 3-4 years, be­cause i have a per­sonal pas­sion and de­sire to help trans­form FNBL for the bet­ter­ment of the Ba­sotho na­tion,” said Mr Knollys, who has a 22 years of bank­ing in­dus­try ex­pe­ri­ence un­der his belt.

“While i am here, i will do my ut­most to show­case what FNBL has to of­fer to Ba­sotho for their bet­ter­ment. FNB is a great brand, both lo­cally and in South Africa.”

He said a solid foun­da­tion had been laid over the years for more growth.

“Now is the time for us to grow. So, I be­lieve i was brought to le­sotho to take the bank to its next level,” Mr Knollys said.

“One of the foun­da­tions for our growth is de­liv­ery of ex­cel­lent ser­vices and the pro­vi­sion of unique and un­matched value propo­si­tions. We are build­ing our growth strat­egy on those two aspects.

“When i talk of value for money, i mean an im­proved client ex­pe­ri­ence at a rea­son­able rate. for in­stance, we re­cently re­duced the prices of three of our busiest trans­ac­tional ac­counts by an av­er­age of 40 per­cent. We be­lieve this is a good start­ing point to im­prove value for money to our clients.”

Mr Knollys added: “We are also ag­gres­sively pur­su­ing elec­tronic bank­ing chan­nels for our clients, which are cheaper for them and more ef­fec­tive as well as be­ing ef­fi­cient.

“They are cheaper in the sense that an elec­tronic trans­ac­tion costs less than a man­ual with­drawal or de­posit. They are more ef­fec­tive and ef­fi­cient in the sense that elec­tronic bank­ing ser­vices are avail­able 24hours a day, while banks have open­ing and clos­ing times.”

He said the bank was also work­ing to­wards in­creas­ing its mar­ket share.

“The le­sotho bank­ing in­dus­try is go­ing through some ex­cit­ing times. All the com­peti­tors are at dif­fer­ent stages of the op­er­a­tional life cy­cle,” noted Mr Knollys.

My in­ten­tion is to serve in this ca­pac­ity for 3-4 years, be­cause I have a per­sonal pas­sion and de­sire to help trans­form FNBL for the bet­ter­ment of the Ba­sotho na­tion.

FNBL Chief Ex­ec­u­tive Of­fi­cer Martin Knollys

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