Meet Dr Akinsola Babalola; the Newly Appointed Special Assistant to the AfDB President

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Dr. Akinsola Babalola, a Nigerian banking and finance management professional with over two decades of experience working in Sub-Saharan Africa has been designated as the Special Assistant to the President of the African Development Bank (AfDB) Group.

Prior to this appointment, Dr. Babalola held the position of Assistant Vice President at Ecobank Transnational Incorporated in Lome, Togo, where he served in various strategic capacities for a period of 11 years.

Between 2012 and 2017 at Ecobank, he served in the capacity of Business Performance Manager in the office of the Deputy Chief Executive Officer in this role, he was responsible for supervising the financial performance of Ecobank subsidiaries in over 30 countries.

He was responsible for enhancing the Bank’s enterprise-wide controls by evaluating compliance risks and executing regulatory adjustments across the subsidiaries of the Ecobank Group in his role as Assistant Vice President for Regulatory Compliance Monitoring, a position he held from 2017 to 2018.

From 2018 to 2021, he assumed the role of Chief of Staff to the Group Execution for Operations and Technology. During this period, his responsibilities were integral to the coordination and execution of core functions within the largest division of the Ecobank Group, ensuring alignment with the institution’s strategic objectives.

He spearheaded organizational reforms and played a key role in implementing various banking and financial systems initiatives. This encompassed leading the team responsible for centralizing and virtualizing cross-functional operational activities throughout the Ecobank Group. He also established the Group Payment Operations in response to the growing need for efficient payment solutions in sub-Saharan Africa, addressing the competitive landscape in the region.

Dr. Babalola most recently served as the head of both regional processing centers located in Lagos and Abidjan, where he managed operational activities for Ecobank subsidiaries. He also held the position of head of the Group Payment Operations Center, responsible for overseeing all digital transactions.

In 2008, Dr. Babalola briefly worked at Shell International Petroleum Company in the United Kingdom, where he assessed strategic business prospects in the gas-to-liquid markets. During his tenure, he also crafted a competitive positioning model for four niche applications.

He holds a Doctoral degree in Business Administration from the University of Manchester (United Kingdom, 2022), a Master of Business Administration from the University of Oxford (United Kingdom, 2008), a Master of Managerial Psychology from the University of Ibadan (Nigeria, 2006), and a Bachelor of Psychology from the University of Ibadan (Nigeria, 1998). He is a Fellow of the Association of Certified Chartered Accountants (United Kingdom).

Dr. Babalola in his new role will offer strategic assistance to the Bank’s President across various levels, both internally and externally, including interactions with the boards of directors, senior management, and staff.

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