National Bank of Fujairah PJSC (NBF) announced the launch of “NBF GenNext”, a leadership programme designed to help the children of the bank’s corporate and institutional banking clients develop business skills for when they take on leadership roles within their family businesses.
Developed in conjunction with Fitch Learning, a leading provider of learning and development solutions for the financial services industry, NBF GenNext was launched in the bank’s Dubai offices yesterday. Industry experts and NBF bank management presented insights on how to successfully run a business and sustain it for future generations.
The inaugural GenNext group of 14 students, mostly fresh university graduates and all scions from established family-run firms within the UAE, were guided through management and financial principles ranging from identifying shareholder returns to developing corporate funding strategies that are appropriate for their businesses.
The one-week complimentary programme also gave participants the opportunity to network with NBF management and senior practitioners in the bank’s specialist areas from treasury to trade finance. The bank plans to make NBF GenNext an annual client engagement programme and tailor it to the different succession planning requirements of its corporate customers.
Vikram Pradhan, NBF’s Head of Corporate and Institutional Banking, said that the programme is an extension of NBF’s strong tradition of differentiated customer service and thought leadership that has allowed the bank to cement its reputation as a trusted partner for businesses within the UAE.
“Kinship and family are important components of the Middle Eastern cultural heritage, and it’s a well-known fact that family businesses continue to form the bedrock of the region’s economic success. By helping our clients develop a strong pipeline of capable young leaders that would help grow their businesses and preserve them for future generations, we are not only reaffirming once again our commitment to the local economy but showcasing the dedication and value that NBF brings to its client relationships for over 30 years.”
Whilst NBF GenNext is the bank’s first ever specialised training programme developed exclusively for clients, it follows similar knowledge-sharing activities that the bank routinely hosts for customers such as the NBF Corporate Day in April, a yearly event that updates clients on the latest trends in global trade and best practices.
NBF GenNext also builds on the bank’s ongoing partnership with Fitch Learning. This was established in 2013, when it provided a 24-month-long credit risk management training programme to over a third of NBF staff as part of a broader effort to improve service levels within the bank.
Andreas Karaiskos, Chief Executive Officer at Fitch Learning said: “Research by the Family Business Network GCC has shown that only a third of family businesses in the GCC are successfully transferred to the next generation, and an even smaller proportion is transferred onto the third. Many family business consultants have cited the failure to develop effective succession plans as the key reason for this trend. Therefore, it is encouraging to see NBF take a proactive step to not only raise awareness of this important issue amongst its clients, but to also leverage our expertise in financial training programmes in support of efforts that will ultimately foster further growth of the UAE economy.”