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This profile was last updated on 12/31/14  and contains information from public web pages and contributions from the ZoomInfo community.

Mr. Jim Ovia

Wrong Jim Ovia?

Board Member

Local Address: Nigeria
Zenith Bank Plc
39 Cornhill
London EC3V 3NU
United Kingdom

Company Description: At Zenith Bank we are committed to providing the best service to our customers. An important step to help improve our service is to listen to you, our customers,...   more

Employment History

Board Memberships and Affiliations


  • honorary degree of Doctor of Science , Finance
    Lagos State University
  • B.Sc degree , Business Administration
    Southern University
  • Master's degree , Business Administration
    University of Louisiana , Louisiana
  • Harvard Business School
  • Bachelor's degree , Business Administration
    Southern University
  • Executive Education of Harvard University
97 Total References
Web References
As expected, Mr. Jim Ovia ..., 31 Dec 2014 [cached]
As expected, Mr. Jim Ovia (MFR) has been confirmed as the Chairman of the Board of Zenith Bank Plc, the commercial bank he co-founded more than two decades ago.
When he was appointed a Non Executive Director of Zenith Bank Plc on June 16, 2014, market commentators had imagined this was a precursor to his emergence as the Chairman of the Board upon the expiration of the term of Mr. Steve Omojafor, who resignation last month further cleared the path for today's announcement.
About Jim OVIA
Mr. Jim Ovia, MFR is a co-founder of Zenith Bank plc and served as its Group Managing Director and Chief Executive Officer from 1990 to July 10, 2010. Before his appointment as the Chairman of the Board and Non Executive Director of Zenith Bank Plc (since June 16, 2014), his over 25 years banking experience started at IMB as a Financial Analyst in 1980 from where he moved to the management centre in 1987. He headed the Corporate Finance department of Merchant Bank of Africa from 1987 to 1990. His interest in computers was picked in 1977 when he worked as a part-time Computer Operator at Baton Rouge & Trust Company, Louisiana.
Mr. Ovia is a holder the Member of the Order of Federal Republic (MFR). He holds a B.Sc. degree in Business Administration from the Southern University, Louisiana, U.S.A. (1977), a Masters degree in Business Administration from University of Louisiana, USA. in 1979, and is an alumnus of Harvard Business School "OPM", Boston, U.S.A.
Jim ..., 29 Dec 2014 [cached]
Jim Ovia
Jim Ovia (CON) is the pioneer entrepreneur that established Zenith Bank Plc, one of Nigeria's largest and most successful financial institutions. Jim has held a long-term passion for technology, spurring him to establish Visafone in 2008, which has grown to become Nigeria's fourth largest mobile phone company. Other private equity ventures undertaken include Cyberspace Networks Limited an IT infrastructure company that designs, builds, manages, and optimizes customized networks and network-related solutions. Jim is a noted philanthropist and the founder of the ICT/Youth Foundation. Jim holds a Master's of Business Administration from the University of Louisiana, USA, and a B.Sc degree in Business Administration from Southern University, USA, and he is an Alumnus of Harvard Business School; (OPM) Executive Management Program.
Mr. Jim Ovia, chairman of ..., 28 Oct 2012 [cached]
Mr. Jim Ovia, chairman of Visafone, stated, "This partnership represents a big step forward in Africa's mobile history and we are very excited to be at the forefront of such a ground-breaking development in the Nigerian market.
Another banker to look at is ..., 22 Feb 2014 [cached]
Another banker to look at is Jim Ovia, a man who went round all his uncles to look for money to start Zenith Bank, but they all turned him down, not believing in his dreams at that time. Today, Jim is the highest unit holder in Zenith banks even as a retiree; he is a regular face on Forbes list of richest Nigerians.
Jim Ovia of Zenith Bank and owner of Visafone followed closely with the power of diversification.
Welcome to Zenith Bank > About Us > Management Team, 24 July 2013 [cached]
Jim Ovia
Jim Ovia is Co-Founder and pioneer Managing Director/CEO of Zenith Bank Plc. He has over 25 years banking experience.
He is the Chairman of the Nigeria Software Development Initiative (NSDI) and also Chairman, National Information Technology Advisory Committee [NITAC]. He is a member of the Governing Council, Nigerian Investment Promotion Council [NIPC] and also a member of the Honorary International Investor Council.
Jim Ovia is a member of the Governing Council of Lagos State University, Lagos and also a member of the Board of Trustees, Redeemer's University For Nations, Lagos. He is the proprietor of the proposed University of Information and Communication Technology, Agbor, Delta State; he served on the board of American International School, Lagos [2001 -2003].
Jim Ovia headed various Non-Governmental Organisations [NGO] at various times including being the first President of the Nigeria Internet Group [2001-2003]; member, Tsunami Disaster Relief Committee and co-ordinator Nigerians United To Save Niger Republic [NUSAN].
He is the founder and Chairman of Mankind United to Support Total Education (MUSTE), a philanthropic organization focused on providing scholarship for the less privileged, of which some of the beneficiaries are now qualified Medical Doctors, Lawyers, Engineers etc.
Jim Ovia is also the founder of the ICT Foundation for Youth Empowerment, which focuses on improving the socio-economic welfare of Nigerian Youths by inspiring and motivating them to embrace Information and Communication Technology. The initiative holds annual Youth Empowerment conferences.
In November 2000, Jim Ovia was conferred with the national award of Member of the Order of the Federal Republic (MFR) by the President, Federal Government of Nigeria. He had earlier received the Zik Award for professional leadership in April 1999. He was also conferred with the honorary degree of Doctor of Science [D.Sc) in Finance by the Lagos State University in October, 2005.
Jim Ovia has a Master's degree in Business Administration from the University of Louisiana, Louisiana, USA in 1979 and a B.Sc degree in Business Administration from Southern University, Louisiana, USA (1977). He is also an Alumnus of Harvard Business School (OPM).
Jim Ovia is a motivational speaker and has delivered speeches at several conferences. He has authored several published and unpublished works and he is in the vanguard of promotion and propagation of Information and Communication Technology in Nigeria.
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