Diamond Trust Bank (DTB) on Thursday appointed former Nation Media Group (NMG) CEO Linus Gitahi as chairperson of its board.
The appointment, which was announced to the DTB shareholders at the Nairobi Securities Exchange (NSE) listed firm’s Annual General Meeting (AGM), is geared at accelerating growth and corporate governance reforms.
Mr Gitahi, who has been serving as a Director on the DTB Board, takes over the mantle from outgoing chairperson Abdul Samji, who has served in that capacity for the last nine years.
The appointment of Mr Gitahi is tailored to ensure that the tier II bank grows its asset base from the current Ksh 378 billion, which largely hinges on the lender’s plan to realise its digital transformation strategy.
Speaking after his appointment, Mr Gitahi said that his major target will be to position DTB as one of the leading financial institutions in Africa.
“To achieve this, we will build on and leverage digital solutions, as well as embrace data-driven analytics, to effectively respond to evolving customer needs and aspirations,” he said.
Gitahi also averred that he will be keen to build on Samji’s successes, sentiments which were echoed by CEO Nassim Devji.
“This requires us to continuously pursue an aggressive and expansive financial inclusion agenda, targeting a broad spectrum of customer segment from large corporates, SMEs, micro- enterprises, salaried employees and high net worth individuals among others.” said Devji.
Ms Devji said she is looking forward to Mr Gitahi’s leadership in actualising the DTB’s growth agenda.
“He understands this organisation and has the expertise to take DTB to greater heights and deliver value to shareholders” she said.
She also expressed her gratitude to Mr Samji, saying: “His diligent leadership ensured we remained committed to the company mission, and saw us grow from a mid-level bank to a Tier 1 bank in East Africa”.
Mr Gitahi, who was first appointed to the DTB Board in April 2017, also serves as the Executive Chairman of Tropikal Brands (Africa) Limited, Chairman of Oxygène Marketing Communications Limited and is a Trustee of the Management University of Africa.
In addition, he is an independent Board director of Simba Corp, Outspan Hospital and Medical College as well as Allianz Insurance (K) Limited.
Currently pursuing his doctorate studies at the United States International University-Africa (USIU-A), Mr Gitahi holds a B. Com (Hons) in Accounting from the University of Nairobi, a Diploma in Management from the Kenya Institute of Management and an MBA from the USIU-A.
He is also a Fellow of the Kenya Institute of Management.
He previously served as the Chief Executive Officer of the Nation Media Group and prior to that was the Group Chief Executive Officer for West Africa for GlaxoSmithKline after having held diverse management positions with them.