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Banking in Nigeria has become a great delight due the massive overhaul in the industry in recent years. Gone are the days you put your money in the bank and go home living in constant fear, not knowing what will be the next news and, developing heart attack over your money. Those days are gone for good! Banks in Nigeria are now better than ever before.

Today, you can work into any Nigerian bank and expect world class services, complete with the beaming faces of smiling and extremely courteous staffs.

There is huge competition among Nigerian banks to out perform one and other and I think this is good for the banking customers because if bank [A] isn’t doing me well, I can easily move my stuffs to bank [B] that offers better services suitable to my need.

SEE ALSO: How To Make Payment Online With Naira Mastercards/VisaCards

However, in the quest to be the best among banks in Nigeria, some are winning while some are getting it all wrong due to factors such as poor customer services, poor internet banking, poor management, and poor facilities in general.

In this list, I’m going to be as objective as possible and rate the banks base on my own perception and that of the general public. Enjoy!

Complete List Of Commercial Banks In Nigeria

22. Union Bank – One of the most reliable bank in those days in terms of keeping your money safe. Union bank is among the oldest banks in Nigeria and is still going strong. But banking has gone beyond just keeping money safe! While banks in Nigeria have made huge effort to improve in their service delivery and customer services, this bank seems to prefer the old way.

Though it may be working well for some people for some reasons, Union bank (to me) is not just getting it right these days. Twice I have had reasons to transact business with the bank, and twice I was disappointed. From old staffs looking like pensioners, to 1960 model computer systems and rusty desks – this bank is a “No” for me. 

21. Mainstreet Bank – To me, this bank is just a paper bank. Nothing different from the Afribank they took over from. In fact Mainstreet is even worse. Granted, Mainstreet bank may be doing some high profile businesses that we don’t know, such as investment banking but, to average customers like me, they are nowhere to be found as a bank. Customer cares are none existent and their facilities are extremely poor.

20. Sterling Bank – They recently acquired Equatorial Trust Bank, that’s a good deal and one would expect greater business and big improvement. The bank is doing well in the stock market, posting revenue of NGN 45.17 billion 2011 financial year. But what is the average customers business with that? Only the investors cares about the revenues!

I visited one of the popular branch to open a business account recently. The first person I asked directed me to a man who took me upstairs and asked me to wait. I waited endlessly for about 40 minutes while the man chat around with other staffs. When I got tired, I just took my leave the way I came. Another customer lost on a platter of gold due to carelessness of ill-trained staffs.

19. Savanna Bank – Nothing much can be said about this bank since they are yet to recommence full banking operation after the restoration of their operational license that was withdrawn years ago. So let’s wait until they are fully into the market. But judging from what happened last time in business, people would always be a little skeptical with Savanna bank this time, at least for now.

18. United Bank for Africa – Probably one of the biggest bank in Africa and they have been around for a very long time. Got into the new generation platform when they merged with Standard Trust Bank in 2005. In those days, Standard Trust Bank used to be the king in Nigerian banking circle. So, it’s natural that people flowed with Standard Trust Bank to UBA.

UBA is still doing their very best to remain on top of the game, like introducing new products and all that, but I think their best is not too good enough. I opened a current account with them in 2008 and my account got compromised within days due to pure carelessness and complacency from UBA. Though my money was refunded, I was never happy with that level of carelessness and inefficiency.

Again, a mischievous client could just pay money into your account, transact business with you and call UBA on phone that he has been duped and UBA will freeze your account instantly without any verification or contacting you in anyway. It happened to me and I am sure it has happened to many customers out there.

17. Enterprise Bank Limited – Formally Spring Bank. I really don’t know much about this bank so I am going to rate them base on Spring Bank. If you are banking with this bank, you have to contend with unavailability of branches and ATMs. Their online banking is zero and I don’t see them with plenty of innovations to compete with the other top banks in Nigeria.

16. Heritage Bank Plc – This bank is not into regular day to day banking. Appointed as a Lagos State revenue collection bank, Heritage bank is one of those banks we see their name only on paper but still doing great businesses.

15. Standard Chartered Bank – British multinational banking and financial services company headquartered in London, United Kingdom. It operates a network of over 1,700 branches including some in Nigeria. They are just international bank with few outlets in Nigeria.

14. Citibank – This is a bank I respect internationally. Citibank has retail banking operations in more than 160 countries and territories around the world. More than half of its 1,400 offices are in the United States. I don’t think they are in Nigeria for retail banking operation. Like Standard Chartered Bank, they are international bank doing investment banking in Nigeria with few outlets.

13. Wema Bank – I have never had any complain with this bank but it’s not uncommon to hear their customers complain of poor services. However, they are one of the most improved banks in Nigeria in recent time. Because they are regional bank and doing very well more than other regional banks, I am giving them 3-star rating.

12. First City Monument Bank – This bank is doing very well in the industry, they are one of the banks that is always upgrading their services, introducing new products and always innovating.  They recently acquired FIN Bank which I am sure will add capacity to their business.

However, most of the staffs in the customer care unit seems to be fond of making their customers look stupid. They would attend to you at their own convenient time no matter how urgent you are. Their online banking is extremely poor and difficult to locate mostly due to bad domain name.

Please, understand that the website’s Domain names that most businesses in Nigeria think is not important could mar your business big time. You don’t just pick any crap and call it a domain – – even a responsible blog wouldn’t go with such Domain Name let alone a professional bank! What happened to FCMB.COM? If it’s not available buy it, it’s the brand you promote and projects to us!

Update! It has been confirmed that FCMB.COM actually belongs to First City Monument bank. That is probably one of the best domain name by any Nigerian owned company. We therefore moved FCMB from 17th to 12th position!!

11. Keystone Bank Limited – Formerly Bank PHB, this is one of the banks Sanusi took over for no reason in my own opinion. The only changes we see are banners on the branches of the former Bank PHB buildings nationwide. Their official website looks like entertainment blog. The bank is certainly not the best option for anyone who wants to bank from outside Nigeria.

10. Skye Bank – Great bank with good products, always on the move and I think they can only get better. However, their online banking really suck. Adding a “Live Chat” that is always offline on a working day is a clear evidence of customer carelessness and irresponsibility. Maybe this bank don’t really know what live chat is?

09. Unity Bank Plc – This bank is doing very well but building micro branches in-place of standard bigger branches like other banks? To me, this is short sightedness and most customers sees it that way and avoid them.

08. Access Bank – Acquired Intercontinental Bank, this bank is getting bigger by the days and have good customer base to show for it. But that hasn’t come without complains. Below is what a customer has to say which is very peculiar with Nigerian banks anyway:

Steve Okoh: Alert! Access bank suspected fraud. I wish to use this medium to call on the management,staff and customers of access bank to investigate the custant unexplanable deductions of small monies from account holders. Is someone repeating the American’s fraud? Where somebody syhoned little negligeble amounts of money from ususpecting account holders & made so much. Eg: if you syphon N10 from one million accounts, the owners may not notice, but you have made 10 million naira. I hope this is not what someone is doing in access bank. My savings account had a deduction of almost N500 in less than 2 months, when i did not do any transaction. Even current account service charges are not that high. Pls access should correct this, else we use all available means to correct them. Meanwhile, if you bank with access, check your ac balance regularly before any further transaction.

My account with GTBank is going through the same problem and the banks always think we wouldn’t notice. Access bank have been accused of wrong doings many times by their customers and was involved with the police pension scam. That alone make them a “No” for me

07. Fidelity Bank Nigeria – This bank is one silent giant bank in Nigeria. Though their adverts are everywhere, people rarely take them very serious. But you need to work in and experience how good they are.

In 2011, the bank was ranked the 7th most capitalized bank in [Nigeria], the 25th most capitalized bank on the African continent and the 567th most capitalized bank in the world –  Wikipedia

The only problem I have with the bank is adding PLC on their website’s domain name, making it difficult to locate them online. That alone is killing their brand on the internet.

06. Ecobank Nigeria – “I love this bank because they are well organized,their ATM service is fast, they attend to their customers on time and they are customer friendly” – happy customer

Recently acquired Oceanic Bank which used to be one of my choice bank. Good product, good services, good online banking.

05. Diamond Bank – – This bank used to be the number one bank on this rating but it seems they are just determined to degenerate at great speed. Diamond bank is expert in choosing poor locations for their branches. For that alone, I am giving them four star rating. Their ATM network is always very poor and their customers do complain a lot and they’ve forgotten what it means to to look good, repaint walls and get new furniture.

04. Stanbic IBTC Bank – A member of Standard Bank Group, this bank is one of the best banks in Nigeria judging by customers comments and general ratings elsewhere. Stanbic IBTC is one of the few banks in Nigeria that really operate on international standards. Great bank!

03. Zenith Bank – This bank would want us to believe they are the gods in banking in Nigeria. N50,000 before you open a savings account, N100,000 if you wants to open a current account, and N200,000 for business account? Who exactly are they trying to filter in this 21st century where banks are looking for customers? They are certainly top bank in Nigeria but not even my number two.

02. Guaranty Trust Bank – This is the bank where I have all my major accounts. Savings, Current, Domiciliary, MasterCard, Business account, Domiciliary again! GTBank is a bank I like so much but that doesn’t qualify them to be number one on this list.

I tried to buy Norton anti virus online with my GTBank master card early this year; Norton declined the transaction and GTBank still retained my N15,000! When I went to their customer care to find out why, they told me they have to hold on to the money for 21 days to be sure Norton wouldn’t come asking for for it.

It is so sad that a top bank in  Nigeria don’t have a clue about how automated online transaction is. That one can only download or get any goods supplied by merchants only after they have successfully charged an account. However, I think they have improved in this regard.  GTB is the bank to beat in the industry. They have one of the best if not the best online banking system among Nigerian banks.

01. First Bank of NigeriaA bank that understands customer convenience and satisfaction. First Bank have overtaken Diamond Bank in this rating as our number one bank in Nigeria. From old generation bank with rusty infrastructures to world class bank with first class branches spread across the nation, First Bank of Nigeria has improved like no other banks in Nigeria.

Unfortunately, Nigerians don’t go with the best most times, they go with the trend that’s why some banks are taking them for a ride. First Bank is a bank that stands out in terms of quality banking and service delivery, you need to walk in to any branch of the bank to experience what I am talking about! Base on these and many more, First Bank is hereby rated in this review as the number one bank in Nigeria!

What do you think about these banks in Nigeria? Share your opinion using the comment box below.

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  • Menelon September 10, 2013

    I completely agree with your list and rating.this is the most comprehensive list i've ever seen. I must add, the way GTBank and UBA are cutting their account holders money is becoming unbecoming, maybe you should write something about that too.

  • Anonymous September 12, 2013

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  • Mansur Gwarzo September 15, 2013

    well, u have tried and ur level of exposure has been exposed. Keep it up.
    But, to be sincere, are u not advertising the CAN's bank? Where have u put Jaiz bank? Does it not exist? Or it is yet to be qualified for even one star?

    • Darlinton Omeh September 15, 2013

      Mansur, Pls pardon my ignorance but I just have to exclude any business that has strong religious connotation from It doesn't matter whether Christian or Muslim. All the banks mentioned are contemporary, non religious banks

      • chindaya March 12, 2016

        oga, I think you really need to understand that JAIZ BANK choses as a business model the Interest Free Banking system which is globally accepted as a valid banking model. that islam happens to promote that model of banking does not in anyway Islamize the bank. go look at the list of JAIZ BANK share holders/promoters, customers and employees, perhaps that will help your undastanding.

  • Adewale Rabiu September 23, 2013

    Your ratings on Guaranty trust Bank and Diamond is very correct. As for first bank, i don't think they even deserved the 4 star ratings as they still work in the old ways. I have an account with them but i have systematically moved my main transaction to GTB and Diamond bank because they offer better customer service.

    • Darlinton Omeh September 23, 2013

      The reason I gave First Bank the 4-star rating is mainly because they managed to stand out among other old generation banks like Union Bank and Afri Bank

  • Anonymous December 21, 2013

    Your effort is quite commendable and rating seemed to be fair,however, I dont know the measured used to arrive at this conclusion. Have they empirically tested?Or is it merely based on observations and peoples comments? .

    • Darlinton Omeh December 21, 2013

      The rating is based on customers experience (mine and that of others) and mere observations too. First impression matters a lot in business, when you walk into any of these banks, you'd get some impression as to what level services they could offer, the general appeal. We put all these into consideration as well as their online banking capacity and the ease of use to come up with the rating.

  • Anonymous January 9, 2014

    Stering bank as am concerned is one of the best bank eversince I have be operating with them.

  • Anonymous February 1, 2014

    Anyway this is nothing but ur personal opinion which we never can say is free of interest & personal ideology. Thanks all the same.

  • Anonymous March 28, 2014

    I commend your effort but i do not agree with your rating because their is no basis for it it. just personal opinion. But a nyc job i must say

  • Anonymous May 4, 2014

    Hello i am uju mary, i am looking for a caring and understanding man i am 26yrs female banker. feel free to add me on my blackberry pin: 265af90b

    See yah

    Please only serious people should add

  • Anonymous May 18, 2014

    I recommend ur effort in writing this. About d access bank case, I think dats rily true, they kept on deducting money from ur account. But now it has reduced, I think it must av come from customers complain jst as u quoted some one on ur blog. On d union bank case I solely believe in d ranking. To me dats d worst bank so far in nigeria, with d worst service

  • Anonymous June 21, 2014

    Thanks for nothing; update based on your personal opinion and not industry rating. Please be objective going forward.

    • Anonymous July 4, 2014

      Yeah, when you guys treats us like shit you forget we are human beings with voices. Some that can be heard miles away.

  • Anonymous July 4, 2014

    This review is interesting! I think you should get someone to proofread before you publish – there are quite a lot of grammatical errors. For starters, it is "courteous" not "cautious". I must add that I don't think your opinion is objective. I have had cause to interact with your top three banks and I haven't been impressed. FYI, I'm a business owner. You claim that your review is based on personal opinion and opinions from other customers (I hope they are not your friends?) but could we have a figure for the total number of people "interviewed"?
    Unfortunately, at this time I have to advise that this report shouldn't be taken seriously until we get more information as it isn't clear how objective it is.
    Thank you Darlington for trying!

  • Anonymous July 4, 2014

    Is that your plan? To be petty and destroy people's businesses? Karma is real and you can never get away with bad stuff. Just saying

    • Joseph August 24, 2014

      You seem not to appreciate simple intellectual analysis the way someone sees it. Write your own that will promote them.

  • objective August 27, 2014

    Great piece,i think it's fair. For me no parameter for evaluation is as important as customer feedback,and dats wat u'v used. thumbs up

  • Blessing August 27, 2014

    I agree with your FirstBank. Though FirstBank service delivery varies from location to location. In V.I, you get classy experience while in Ajegunle, you get terrible experience.
    But as for Diamond Bank, they are the worse in terms of technology. Their ATMs are pathetic. I don't advice anyone to use their machine because it most often trap cards without reason. I have experienced this 3 times, out of which 2 times at Diamond Bank Yaba.

    • Anonymous August 27, 2014

      The problem may just peculiar with that particular branch in Yaba. Diamond bank ATM is known to issue mint naira

  • Zakariyya Abdullahi April 25, 2015

    Your writeup is incredible. I agree with you

    • Darlinton Omeh April 25, 2015

      Thank you Zakariyya, I have made some interesting observation among the Nigerian Banks over the last 12 months and very soon, I'll be updating the list based on that

  • Anonymous June 28, 2015

    Like you said…your opinion…top banks in your mind not an accredited list…when you get the attention you crave..I'm sure it will change

  • henry wallace musoke April 26, 2016

    well i think these banks are credible and are worth checking out.

  • Chinenye July 12, 2016

    You need to update this post……Union bank has gone way past being the last on the list. They have upgraded real good with good customer experience as well. Please update.

  • Kehinde Adetiloye December 27, 2018

    Your observations are largely correct. Each of the banks has one major flaw or the other. The matter at issue concerns what is contributory to their growth or degeneration. The case of GTB is clear in spite of long queues that form S to the main roads customers are ever thronging the place. You, though disappointed in the practices did not mention why you prefer them. Many of the banks are just cheats, charging the customers for what they cannot explain. Imagine going to deposit into your savings account and getting a amount less by NGN52.5 and the regulators are not doing anything. This is why many of he policies of financial inclusion would fail. Access Bank Ecobank and some others are fond of this practice. Some of the banks invest in the info-tech for profit such is the case of GTB and UBA. Some banks are trying to innovate and constantly to change their business model such is the case of Ecobank and Firsts bank. Most of the growing banks have leveraged on some points to record their organic growth.

  • kolawole olumide January 10, 2019

    great work for starters..about access bank, for me the bank literally deal with supposed ‘private accounts’ the way they feel like.just as their name spells, they access people accounts at their own will without seeking proper consent.this they exhibited with my very first transaction.i never ticked the option for a debit card but this bank went ahead to deduct from my account money for their card without proper notice.the second thumbs down experience i had with this bank was of recent.i wanted to make a transfer to someone operating a different bank.i had 3 unsuccessful trials doing this and on the three occasion my account was debited 20naira,amounting to 60naira for an unsuccessful transaction.i was livid and i vowed the next opportunity i have in one of their outlets i will request my account be closed.ACCESS Bank really sucks.

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