Visa Inc., a global payment company, has appointed Oluwakemi Okunsanya as its new general manager for West Africa, effective September 1, 2017.
A statement on Tuesday stated that Okunsanya joined Visa from MoneyGram International, where she was head of Anglophone Africa.
According to the company, Okunsanya, in her role, will lead the team based in Lagos to drive core business growth in Nigeria, Gambia, Ghana, Liberia and Sierra Leone.
It added that she would be responsible for the overall strategy in the region, including building long-term relationships with clients, regulators and other key stakeholders to drive the adoption of cashless payments.
Speaking on the appointment, the President, Visa Sub Saharan Africa, Andrew Torre, said, “We are excited to welcome Oluwakemi to the Visa team. She is a local manager with a proven record of success working with a broad range of stakeholders in the financial services industry, including with regulators and financial institutions.
“She is also a strong and successful people leader. Nigeria is one of the most enthusiastic and successful adopters of technology in Africa, presenting huge opportunities for us to digitise commerce and connect millions more people to the global economy. Oluwakemi joins us at a great time to help drive Nigeria’s move away from cash into more reliable, secure and innovative forms of payments.”
Commenting on her appointment, Oluwakemi said, “Visa’s promise is to bring the benefits of electronic payments to everyone, everywhere. Nowhere is that a more exciting challenge than in Nigeria and the wider region, where we have a wonderful opportunity to combine technology and partnerships with a broad range of people to drive truly transformation change in the way that the economy transacts.
“It gives me great pleasure to join the Visa team, and I am looking forward to meeting with our financial institution, merchant and government clients to see how Visa can be a better partner and a catalyst for societal change here and across the region.”
Prior to her leadership role at MoneyGram, Okunsanya had a 10-year stint with Zenith Bank Plc, where her responsibilities spanned sales and marketing strategy, as well as management of the branch liability and asset portfolios, according to the statement.
The appointment comes in affirmation of Visa’s commitment to bringing the best of human capital and services to West Africa, it added.