There is an analogy that can be noticed in the way boards across industries pick top talent to run their firms. Take the premier league as an example. When Chelsea Football Club have a run of bad results, the last 10 years has seen many managers of high football pedigree take over the reins. Although exits in Zambian modern businesses are different from the
English premier league, there are signals that can be observed from board decisions when they pick replacements for exiting CEOs.
That is why it is exciting to know that Stanbic Zambia’s announcement is finally out. Leina Gabaraane takes over from Charles Muduwa (who now has a ‘Swahili’ assignment post Boys 2 men) as Stanbic’s new CEO. Leina is a “bank man”. He has been with the bank in Botswana since 2002 according to the Botswana Guardian. Organically grown we must add. Appointed as Chief Executive in 2008, Lenia holds a Masters in Business Administration (MBA). Credit to the bank in Botswana for grooming one of their own and subsequently elevating him to CEO.
Stanbic Zambia’s new leader comes with profit in mind (like all CEOs). In addition, he looks certain to ensure that bank remains one of the top 5 banks in Zambia. This is evident from his performance in Botswana were he kept the bank in the top four alongside First National Bank Botswana (FNBB), Barclays Bank Botswana (BBB) and Standard Chartered Bank Botswana.
Leina leaves indelible mark on his board. According to Stanbic Bank Botswana Chairman, Craig Granville, he was quoted by the The Monitor Botswana saying “For us, this is especially exciting in that we have a truly great example of Botswana talent being exported within the Group, not only flying the Botswana flag high, but that of Stanbic Bank Botswana”.
The macro economic landscape Lenia will find will be very different from Botswana. With many executives continuing to ponder on what Government and the IMF’s next move will be, he will find that this will now become his concern his concern as well. Gross domestic product (GDP) drivers for both countries are different. According to the World Bank GDP of Botswana stood at 15.27 billion USD (2016) while Zambia’s was 19.55 billion USD (2016). In addition, there is the small matter of population with Botswana having 2.25 million (2016) and Zambia 16.59 million (2016). All these factors will be considered as he adopts a new strategy for his new role in Zambia. We look forward to reviewing his performance in Q1 2018.