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Ifiesimama “Ifie” Sekibo was born in Port Harcourt, Rivers State on April 18th, in the year 1965. He attended both primary and secondary schools in Port Harcourt before proceeding to the University of Science & Technology, Port Harcourt where he obtained a degree in accountancy. He attended the Harvard Business School between 2006 and 2009. He holds a PhD Credit Management from the London Post Graduate Credit Management College, UK, an affiliate of American University, London. In 2002, Sekibo became a fellow of the Institute of Chartered Accountants of Nigeria.
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Sekibo began his career as an Auditor with the Rivers State government’s Audit department in 1988. He thereafter joined KPMG in Lagos as an Audit Trainee in 1989 before moving to ELF Nigeria ltd as a Cost Controller. Between 2000 and 2002, he became a member of the Executive Management of Rims Merchant Bank, while also serving as Financial Controller and Head of Administration in Monipulo Limited (Petroleum Development) from 1999 to 2002. In 2003, Sekibo emerged as the Group Managing Director of International Energy Insurance, a foremost insurance company in Nigeria, and led his team to acquire Global Assurance Company Limited, previously under the technical management of the National Insurance Commission. The company under his leadership also undertook successful capital raise and was listed on Nigerian Stock Exchange. In 2009, he led another team of professionals which nurtured the rebirth of the erstwhile Société Générale Bank in Nigeria and began to operate as Heritage Banking Company Limited. In 2014, it acquired Enterprise Bank Ltd to become Heritage Bank Ltd.

Heritage Bank

As the Managing Director/CEO of Heritage Bank (Nigeria), Sekibo positioned the bank to become the most innovative banking service provider in Nigeria.
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The bank has won several awards under his leadership including Best SME Bank in Nigeria by Capital Finance International (CFI) 2018, Agriculture Bank of the Year at Nigeria Agriculture Awards (NAA) 2018, and many other awards. Currently, the bank has 127 branches and 202 automated banking centers with over 350 ATMs in all states of the federation and the Federal Capital Territory (FCT) of Nigeria.

Awards and achievements

  • Man Making a Difference, Goal Attainment Made Easy (GAME), 2014
  • Leader of the Year Award, Leadership Clinic GOTNI, 2016


Though there are some philanthropic gestures made as a private citizen, the bulk of Sekibo’s societal interventions are done by Heritage Bank, Nigeria’s most innovative bank, where he is the head honcho.
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His passion for education philanthropy made him sponsor the launch of a book titled Let Us Speak Ikwerre (A KWU IWNUROHHNA), in Port Harcourt, Rivers State. The book originally written in the English Language was authored by Mrs. Oyintarela Umeri and translated to the Ikwerre language by Dr. Tony Enyia, an indigene of Rumuor-Ogbakari, Emohua Local Government of Rivers State. Though he stumbled on the idea to translate the English language to Niger Delta languages when he was invited by his friend Timi Alaibe to the launch of ‘Izon fie’, a book written in Izon language, he immediately took action and sponsored the Niger Delta Books Limited to launch an audio CD in the Kirike language (Okrika dialect) titled: Speak Kirike, which was successfully launched in 2017. In September 2021, he was named the most reputable bank CEO in Africa alongside Yemisi Edun, CEO of First City Monument Bank.

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This article was first published on 14th June 2022


Jeremiah is a scholar and a poet. He has a keen eye for studying the world and is passionate about people. He tweets at @jeremiahaluwong.

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