Recently making a giant stride in the Gulf Anthony Onyemechi Elumelu TOE as he is fondly called is one of Nigeria’s or should I say Africa’s leading businessmen and philanthropists.
He is the chairman of Africa’s foremost banks UBA, Heirs Holdings, Transcorp and founder of The Tony Elumelu Foundation.
The launching of UBA in Dubai has positioned UBA as one of the leading Nigerian and indeed African banks when it comes to having a global footprint.
TOE has proven to be futuristic in its recent moves because Regional and global trade will surely dominate how businesses are conducted in the next few years and it’s not difficult to see what UBA is trying to achieve here.
Under his leadership, the bank now has over 20 branches/subsidiaries outside Nigeria and is the only Nigerian bank with a deposit license in the United States.
Elumelu was born on March 22, 1963, in Jos, Plateau, Nigeria, to Suzanne and Dominic Elumelu of Onicha-Ukwu, Aniocha North Local Government Area, Delta State. He was raised by four siblings, one of whom is Ndudi Elumelu, a minority leader in Nigeria’s Federal House of Representatives.
He earned a Bachelor of Science and a Master of Science in Economics from the University of Lagos after studying at Bendel State University (now Ambrose Alli University).
In 1985, he worked as a Youth Corp member of the National Youth Service Corps at Nigerian Bank Union Bank before beginning his career as a salesman. Elumelu later joined Allstates Trust Bank in 2005, and United Bank for Africa (UBA) was acquired shortly after.
Elumelu led a small group of investors to take over a failing Crystal Bank in 1997. (later renamed Standard Trust Bank). Within a few years, he had turned it profitable, and in 2005, he led one of Sub-Saharan Africa’s largest banking mergers by acquiring United Bank for Africa.
He led the company as Group Managing Director from a single-country banking group to a pan-African bank with subsidiaries in 20 African countries, France, the United States, and the United Kingdom following the merger of Standard Trust Bank and United Bank for Africa in 2005, eventually stepping down in 2010.
TOE currently serves as the chairman of the board of directors of the United Bank for Africa.
He also runs Heirs Holdings, a family-owned investment holding company, and the Tony Elumelu Foundation, a philanthropic organisation.
He established Heirs Holdings, his family-owned investment holding company, in 2010. In the same year, Elumelu established the Tony Elumelu Foundation, an Africa-based foundation that promotes entrepreneurship in Africa.
In 1993, Elumelu married Awele Vivien Elumelu, a medical doctor. They have a total of seven children.