Standard Bank has confirmed that Vetumbuavi Mungunda has stepped down as chief executive, and has left the Standard Bank Group effective 30 April 2021 in accordance with the advance notice published in August 2020.
This has allowed for a smooth transition process that resulted in the selection of Mercia Geises as the incoming chief executive, effective 1 May 2021.
Herbi Maier, chairman of the board, said “Vetumbuavi has been the chief executive for the last seven years, and has provided outstanding leadership, strategic direction and a clear vision for the bank during a very difficult and challenging time which included, among others, a difficult economic environment, the Covid-19 pandemic and the implementation of the bank’s new core banking system.”
Mungunda also championed the bank’s modernisation and repositioning as a digitally innovative and customer centric universal financial institution. He also successfully spearheaded the listing of the group on the Namibia Stock Exchange, which broadened the bank’s shareholder base, ensuring the inclusion of close to 2000 employees as shareholders.
“The Buy-a-Brick Initiative, which has so far built 600 across the country, and which was conceptualised and brought to life by Vetumbuavi Mungunda’s leadership, is one such programme that not only leaves a lasting impact, but will be celebrated for years to come.”
Said Mungunda: “I am deeply appreciative of the numerous learning and growth opportunities I was given to continue developing as a leader, and to impact so many lives both within Standard Bank and the country at large. I am looking forward to new opportunities and challenges, and while these will be outside of Standard Bank, I will remain the bank’s most loyal advocate and supporter.”
Meanwhile, Geises has been welcomed as the new Standard Bank Namibia chief executive. She has for the past five years served as Head of Personal and Business Banking (PBB), and has deep experience and exposure in the financial industry and banking sector.
She is an admitted attorney, with a B. Juris (UNAM), LLB and LLM Mercantile Law (University of the Free State), and an MBA (University of Stellenbosch). Geises joined Standard Bank in 2016, and was previously chief executive officer of Old Mutual Investment Group, where she worked for 12 years.
As she takes over the helm, Geises is expected to continue the transformation drive to turn the bank into a strong, digital, future-ready business focused on creating value for clients and shareholders. Over the past five months, she has worked closely with Mungunda to ensure a smooth and seamless transfer of the leadership baton.
Said Geises: “Vetumbuavi is the bravest of hearts, and I am privileged to have worked with him. After the transition period, I will be commissioning my solo flight on 1 May, and I appreciate the confidence that the board has in me.”