By Amba Mpoke-Bigg
The African Development Bank has appointed Marie-Laure Akin-Olugbade, a Cameroonian national, Vice President for its Regional Development, Integration and Business Delivery complex. The appointment is effective from the 1stof April 2023.
Akin-Olugbade is a seasoned senior executive with close to 31 years of experience delivering technical, managerial and strategic knowledge and leadership in capital markets, treasury, asset management and product development at the African Development Bank.
Before her appointment, she was Acting Vice President for the complex, and Director General of the Bank’s Business Development and Delivery Office for the West Africa Region.
Akin-Olugbade led the development and implementation of transformative strategies, programmes and transactions, positioning the African Development Bank as the “Solutions Bank.” Working with the largest team of country managers in the institution, she was engaged on the full complexity of its lending and non-lending operations in middle-income and low-income countries. These have included transition states, as well as innovative and complex cross border operations.
She oversaw the accelerated delivery of results on the $9 billion West Africa portfolio, engaging with governments, the private sector, regional economic communities, and non-state actors, to achieve significant, life-transforming development impact.
The new Vice President joined the African Development Bank in the trading room of its Treasury Department in 1991 as a finance assistant, where she worked until 1993, when she became an investment officer. She served in that role from 1993 to 1997, managing the Bank’s assets in international capital markets. Subsequently, she became a principal financial analyst in the Financial Technical Services Division, where she was responsible for clients’ financial solutions across the continent.
Akin-Olugbade was appointed Manager of the Bank’s Financial Technical Services Division in 2008 and held that position through 2010. In that role, she oversaw new product development, client financial solutions and risk management services. She also led the team that authored the African Fixed Income and Derivatives Guidebook published in 2010.
Akin-Olugbade is a graduate of the Université Paris-Dauphine in France, where she obtained a masters’ degree in applied economics. She also holds a postgraduate diploma in management from the Université Panthéon- Sorbonne.
After close to 20 years, Akin-Olugbade moved to the African Development Bank’s Operations complex and was appointed Country Manager for the Ghana Country Office, a position she held from 2010 to 2016. There, she managed a $1 billion portfolio of complex lending and non-lending operations, which produced impactful and sustainable results. Notably, she led the team that originated and financed the landmark Accra Pokuase Interchange, the first four-tier interchange in West Africa.
Commenting on her appointment, Akin-Olugbade said: “I am very grateful to the African Development Bank President, Dr Akinwumi Adesina, for the confidence and trust bestowed on me by this appointment. I look forward to working under Dr Adesina’s leadership, with the dedicated and talented team of directors general, directors, deputy directors, country managers, the Bank’s operational complexes, the senior leadership team and our Board of Directors, to enhance the effectiveness, efficiency, and delivery of quality operations for all beneficiaries in our regional member countries.”
Dr Akinwumi A. Adesina said: “I am pleased to appoint Mrs Marie-Laure Akin-Olugbade Vice-President for the Regional Development, Integration and Business Delivery complex of the Bank. She will provide strong and effective leadership to the complex. Marie-Laure is a seasoned and respected professional and business leader. She has extensive hands-on experience in banking and development. She will ensure that the Bank operates successfully across its regional member countries and will oversee the full implementation of all aspects of our regional directorates in furtherance of the Bank’s development mandate.”