Fintech champion to head United Bank
The National Bank of Ethiopia (NBE) has approved the appointment of Melaku Kebede, who was serving United Bank as a senior Deputy CEO –Strategy &Technology, as the new Acting Chief Executive Officer (CEO) replacing Taye Debekulu, who has led the bank for six years.
According to the banks press release sent to The Reporter, Melaku’s most recent role as project lead in the development of the Bank’s 2030 strategy has made him the right pick to take United further in the coming years. Apart from that, Melaku is also credited for a number of Fintech applications that the Bank uses currently, giving United the competitive edge it needs to continue as one of the top 5 private banks in Ethiopia.
With a collective 14 years’ experience in the banking industry, Melaku has served the Bank for more than a decade including as the Vice President for Systems & E-Banking and as a manager of the banking department. He was also the Vice President for Technology with another private bank Zemen, where he was tasked with the overall project implementation in technology and is credited for his outstanding leadership.
“Unique to the industry’s practice of bringing foreign experts, Melaku is renowned for developing innovative financial solutions and applications in-house, empowering local expertise,” the press statement read. And, according to Bank, the new CEO has been recognized for utilizing Fintech projects with local capacity on multiple occasions.
Furthermore, Melaku was instrumental in the launch of interest Free Banking (IFB) window, new ways of handling the local remittance services called BLMT (Broad Band Local Money Transfer), loan origination work flow and many more, the Press release said.
Other key projects that Melaku has left his mark on include “The establishment of EthSwitch (Switch system connecting all bank-ATMs in the country), in the preparation of the Financial National Cyber Security Framework for Ethiopia FIs (Financial institutes) together with INSA and NBE few years back.”
Before he had his run-in with the banking industry, Melaku also worked for Unity University as an instructor and registrar and member of University Senate for over 15 years, according to the press statement. Prior to finding his focus in Fintech, he has also worked as a young auditor for both the Amhara and the Federal Auditors General.