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PEOPLE: Dolika Banda, Arjun Dhillon, Danial Hailu, Amin Manekia

AfSB Staff

Dolika Banda, CEO, ARC Ltd. 

The African Risk Capacity Insurance Co, Ltd. (ARC Ltd.) appointed former IFC director Dolika Banda (above) chief executive officer, effective Sep. 7, 2016. Banda succeeds Simon Young Ph.D., CEO since 2014, who will continue to serve in an advisory capacity. Under YOung, ARC bnegan to push the boundaries of innovation in better managing natural disasters in order to build resilience and underpin economic growth for th emost vulnerable across Africa. Banda is expected to guide the ocmpany successfully through its next phase and toward its goal of insuring 30 countries bu 2020 for $1.5 billion. A Zambian economist and advisor, Banda has more than 25 years of internaitonal banking and financial management experience, with a focus on economic development in sub-Saharan Africa. Most recently she was regional director for Africa at Britain's Commonwealth Development Corporation, and before that served as director of financial markets at the World Bank Group's International Finance Corporation for 16 years, managing its financial markets activities across syb-Saharab Africa, Latin Americam and the Caribbean. Banda has also held senior corporate and merchant banking positions at Barclays and Citibank Zambia. She currently is a non-executive director on several boards, including Ecobank Transnational Inc. ARC is an insurance mutual and financial affiliate of ARC Agency, a Specialized Agency of the African Union. As the continent's first catastrophe risk pool, it sells parametric insurance products on a "modeled loss" basis to eligible ARC Agency member states and pools the risk across the cotinent to bring a sustainable risk financing solution at the lowest possible cost. For the current underwriting year, it is looking to cover up to nine countries for drought risk, and is offering parametric tropical cyclone cover to four countries in the South West Indian Ocean: Mauritius, Comoros, Mozambique and Madagascar.  


Arjun Dhillon, Head - Africa Sales Team, GeoPoll

GeoPoll, a leading mobile survey company and media measurement provider in Africa, hired Arjun Dhillon to oversee and expand its sales team across the continent. Dhillon has more than 15 years’ experience in the FMCG and telecom sectors in Kenya and India, most recently heading Sales and Retention at Safaricom Kenya, Kenya’s largest telecom company.  He has significant experience in building and leading high-performing sales team and will be based in GeoPoll’s Nairobi office, where the staff has grown to more than 30 since GeoPoll began its expansion on the continent in 2014. Under Dhillon’s guidance, the sales team will continue to grow in Kenya and other key countries in Africa, including South Africa, Nigeria, Tanzania, and Ghana. By the end of 2016, GeoPoll expects to add more than 20 sales representatives across the continent who will work with global media companies and brands and other partners to integrate mobile surveys into their data collection projects. This year GeoPoll introduced Pan-African OOH, a data product that measures reach and effectiveness of out of home media across Africa, and expanded its user database to 300 million people in Africa and Asia.  By the end of 2016 GeoPoll expects to expand coverage to an additional 10 countries and reach 500 million users.   


Daniel Hailu, Acting CEO, GE Ethiopia

Daniel Hailu, chief operating officer at GE Ethiopia, has been the firm’s acting chief executive officer since May 1, 2016, when Yohannes Tilahun officially resigned his position as CEO “to pursue other opportunities,” according to Jay Ireland, president and CEO of GE Africa. Hailu will remain acting CEO until a permanent replacement for Tilahun is identified. Tilahun brought years of experience to GE in designing and successfully executing large multi-stakeholder projects and leading teams to deliver results. Prior to joining the company, he most recently was senior director of strategy at Ethiopian Investment Commission (“EIC”). He previously served as a special advisor to the CEO of the EIC, as well as to other government ministers, on such issues as priority focus areas for greater economic development through private sector involvement. Prior to this, he held roles of increasing responsibilities in the United States with Wells Fargo and Morgan Stanley. Based in Boston, Mass., GE is the sixth-largest firm in the U.S. by gross revenue. It plans to expand in Africa in the power, rail and health care sectors, and especially in aviation in Ethiopia and oil and gas in Mozambique. The International Monetary Fund predicts these two countries will grow more than 8 percent this year. In 2014, GE announced plans to invest $2 billion in Africa by 2018 and double its workforce on the continent to about 5,000, Ireland said.


Amin Manekia, Group Executive–Corporate & Investment Banking, Ecobank Transnational Inc.

Ecobank Transnational Inc., (ETI), parent company of the Ecobank Group, appointed Amin Manekia Group Executive of its Corporate & Investment Banking business, effective July 4, 2016. Manekia will report directly to the Ecobank Group CEO, with responsibility for the Corporate Banking Group; Transaction Service Group; Investment Banking Group; Fixed Income, Currencies & Commodities (Treasury); and Securities, Wealth and Asset Management. He succeeds Charles Kié, who vacated the position in late 2015 to become managing director of Ecobank Nigeria. A national of Pakistan, Manekia joins Ecobank with 28 years of international corporate banking experience in transaction banking, commercial banking, credit risk and general management. His career spans various business and regional leadership roles worldwide, notably in the United States, Eastern Europe, Africa and the Middle East. Prior to joining ETI he worked at Citigroup, where he spent 25 years of his career, most recently as managing director and Africa head for Citi Securities & Banking in South Africa. Manekia joined Citigroup in 1988 and moved to South Africa earlier this year. He previously spent two years at the Samba Financial Group in Saudi Arabia with responsibility for rebuilding the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia’s corporate banking portfolio following the financial crisis. Prior to this, he held various positions with Citibank, including his Nairobi, Kenya-based role as managing director and banking head for East and Southern Africa; commercial banking head across Citibank’s Africa platform; country head for Bulgaria; and a six-year tenure in corporate banking roles in Pakistan. 

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