Absa's share price rose nearly 2 percent as markets opened to trade at R178.33 after news that Maria Ramos will retire from the Absa Group and Absa Bank at the end of February 2019. René van Wyk will take over March 1, 2019 as chief executive officer until a suitable replacement is found.
Van Wyk has been an independent non-executive director of the boards since February 2017. Prior to that, he held the position of bank secretary at the South African Reserve Bank and retired in May 2016. Van Wyk has 19 years of experience with Nedbank including Chief Risk Officer of Nedcor Investment Bank. He was also executive director of the Imperial Bank.
Ramos has been the group's chief executive for 10 years. Absa is South Africa's third-largest lender. As stated by Bloomberg, FirstRand, Nedbank Group and Standard Bank Group are "on the average number of products per customer and the loyalty of their customers. It also lost market share among youth groups, mass market, middle income and affluent. And, above all, Absa was the worst performance of 2018 in the six-member South African banking index. "
In a statement from Sens to the African bank, Ramos led the group through significant milestones, including the aftermath of the global financial crisis and the acquisition of Barclays Africa's subsidiary banks in 2013.
"She indicated the desire to resign
previously agreed but agreed to see the group through the separation negotiations with
Successive key settlement and separation milestones, including
PLC achieving regulatory deconsolidation and renewing the Absa brand identity.
With the separation on the track and our new strategy as an independent financial
institution, Maria feels that this is the right time to retire.
She chose to retire when she turns 60
February and is eligible to do so. "