CEO trends in corporate banking culture & role model of Abrar A. Anwar

-Md. Shafiqul Alam FCA, FCMA, ACS
C-Suite also called ‘C-level executives’ are vital corporate leaders nowadays. To coup with the modern corporate trends, these types of hierarchy reflect to various entities omitting or parallel to Managing Director, Executive Director, Director Finance or Director Marketing to Chief Executive Officer (CEO), Chief Operating Officer (COO), Chief Financial Officer (CFO), Chief Marketing Officer (CMO) and Chief Information Officer (CIO) etc. Let’s face the CEO inclination in the Banking sectors of our country.
The drift of deployment of Bangladeshi CEOs in national and multinational banks operating has been increasing with time is really exhorting sign for us. With the competences and hard working, they are being able to display themselves brightly in the national and international corporate arena. Being the skipper of any organization, CEO, an integrated thinker, needs to play multitasking role and in banking sector no doughty gets the big role than others entities. Let’s speak about a local made international exposed CEO.
Abrar A. Anwar is such kind of key officer of the London-based Standard Chartered Bank (SCB) who is one of the first Bangladeshi CEOs of any multinational banks operating in this country.  The mountainous triumph and dignity for Bangladesh corporate market, especially in the banking sector, has come with the proclamation of his having been nominated for the top position of SCB Malaysia though Bangladeshi national Nasreen Sattar was the CEO of SCB Afghanistan during 2007 – 2009. Muhammad A. (Rumee) Ali was the first Bangladeshi CEO of Standard Chartered Bank and ANZ Grind lays Bank, Bangladesh. In fact, Ali was the first Bangladeshi to hold the CEO position in any major multinational company in Bangladesh.
Standard Chartered Bank Malaysia Berhad has appointed Anwar as its Managing Director and Chief Executive Officer, effective from this November 01 where he took over the responsibility of Mahendra Gursahani. The sound Banker and prominent corporate leader Anwar joined SCB Bangladesh in 2011 as head of corporate and institutional clients and served this bank as CEO since January 2015 after nine years in the country office of Citibank NA. Anwar started his banking career with the then ANZ Grind lays Bank in 1991. As a successful banker, he has 26 years of experience in corporate and investment banking in Bangladesh, India and the UK.

For the kind information of the readers, its lag far behind that there is no solid statistics of the total CEO in the Country and how many of them are local or hired from abroad. Moreover, it also gets hindering to obtain how many Bangladeshi CEOs are performing in the international arena especially in banking sectors. Being a consistent performer, integrated thinker, problem solver and sound orientation of the market, Anwar bought the attention of the giant bank group successfully and subsequently he was picked up for the zenith position.

Apart from being the global C-suit arena, his achievements include setting up the first “syndication and structured finance” business in Bangladesh (for ANZ Grind lays Banks). His courageous and visionary life can be ecstatic news and guidance for young bankers who are yet to set their big goals of being next global leaders.

With the entering of Anwar in the corporate banking market, he didn’t have to look back for a while, as his good understanding with the group, the capability of understanding the interest of the group, professional attitude, glamorous charisma, working with the complex market in easy ways made him attractive to all.

Let’s face the other example. India, as in our neighboring country, is now a big example of producing world’s most C Level Executives in the global market.  Whereas, when we are exporting semi-skilled or non-skilled people for working abroad, they are exporting their best people for dominating in the global corporate arena. It is quite easy to figure out that, thousands of unskilled workers cannot earn compared to a single key officer. Their educational strength, exceptional talent over the years, necessary skills and business acumen to head critical business functions, and being comfortable working in different geographies and in different business cultures have made it happen. Experience working in the emerging markets in complex business environments, highly skilled managerial competencies and being adept in English are the utmost importance to expose oneself as a top leader in the global market.

If we provide these skills to our aspired leaders, we will be able to export many C-level officers, like Anwar, in the world’s topmost companies.  In this way, it should be our premier duty to work for making our leaders worthy in the global market. Most importantly, expanding high-quality education and diminishing Dhaka based working mentality to our bosses are the want of the time.

We believe that with professional endeavor and experience, Anwar will be a successful leader in the Malaysian market and will bring more positive impact in our corporate arena. Anwar, an iconic C-suite business leader from Bangladesh set up an example for other Bangladeshi bankers to follow him and become an impactful regional leader. Many other bankers of our country might get good guidance and a way to show their hidden talents to the world. It is our long cherished dream that our Executives will dominate the corporate market in Asia-Pacific region and the Middle East, along with the other countries, following fulfilling our local demands.  As a result, they will be more financially solvent than before, and this will put a gigantic effect on the development of our economy.


Picture of the writer, Md. Shafiqul Alam FCA, FCMA, ACS




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