The inauguration ceremony at Avenue Avenue Houdaille, Place de la République in Abidjan’s main commercial district of Plateau, took place with Ivorian Prime Minister Daniel Kablan Duncan as main guest of honour. The Prime Minister paid homage to the Ecobank Group as “an indefatigable pioneer of African economic integration that continually champions economic development on the continent and in Côte d’Ivoire particularly.”
Established in Côte d’Ivoire in 1988, Ecobank Côte d’Ivoire is one of the 36 subsidiaries of the pan-African banking group Ecobank, under the group’s parent and holding company Ecobank Transnational Incorporated (ETI). Ecobank Côte d’Ivoire finances 13 per cent of the Ivorian economy, having paid 14 billion CFA francs ($23.5 million) in taxes to the Ivorian Treasury in 2014.
With 655 employees and 55 branches across the country, the Ivorian subsidiary has total assets of 850 billion CFA francs ($1.4 billion) and recorded profit before tax of 17 billion CFA francs ($28.7 million) in 2014.
Albert Essien, Group CEO of Ecobank, said after the ceremony, “Ecobank Côte d’Ivoire is a pearl in our network and we are proud of our subsidiary. It provides us with an important platform through which we can continue to contribute to the economic development of Côte d’Ivoire as we offer our Ivorian customers access to banking services and financial resources.”
The Mayor of the host district of Plateau, Bendjo Akossi, emphasised that Ecobank Côte d’Ivoire’s new head office building was designed by African architects. The building’s main architect, Ibrahima Konare gave a presentation showing the various stages of construction and highlighted the avant-guard design of the building.
Pierre Magne, Chairman of the Ecobank Côte d’Ivoire Board of Directors, said the new head office was constructed at a cost of roughly 12 billion CFA francs ($20.2 million), which, “Showed the confidence of the Ecobank Group in the future of Côte d’Ivoire and its firm commitment to support the country in its journey to towards the 2020 development horizon.”
Evelyne Tall Daouda, Deputy Group CEO of Ecobank, said, “This head office building illustrates the firm commitment of the Ecobank Group to consolidate its position in Côte d’Ivoire, to contribute to the development of the Ivorian economy, to take part in the creation of wealth and tangible employment for young people, and to provide banking services for more and more Ivorians.” She also warmly congratulated the Managing Director of Côte d’Ivoire, Charles Daboiko and his team for bringing the building project to fruition.
Speeches were followed by the official ribbon cutting ceremony by Prime Minister Duncan to declare the building officially open. The Prime Minister and invited guests were then invited to sign the official guest book and take a tour of the building’s banking branch. A cocktail reception by Ecobank brought the ceremony to a close.