First National Bank Ltd review 2021

Posted on January 3, 2021 by Staff Writer

Rateweb | South Africa


First National Bank
Type Division
Parent First Rand Limited
Sectior Financial Services
Industry Banking
Address 4 First Place Bank City,
South Africa
Website wwww.fnb.co.za

First National Bank (FNB) is South Africa’s oldest bank, having been founded in 1838, the bank is one of the big 5 banks in South Africa. The other include Absa, Nedbank, Capitec Bank and Standard Bank.

FNB is a division of First Rand Limited, which trades on the Johannesburg Stock Exchange under FSR. The company serves customers in South Africa, Namibia and Botswana. Furthermore, FNB maintains its banking subsidiaries which it owns partially or wholly.

Subsidiaries are in Mozambique, Swaziland, Tanzania, Zambia, Ghana, India, Lesotho, Guernsey, SA, Namibia and Botswana.

A brief history of First National Bank

1838 – 1912

First National Bank is the oldest bank in South Africa, formed in 1838 in Grahamstown. The bank was the financier of wool in the region of Grahamstown as a result of a boom in the export of wool at the time. The bank did well, reporting profits in its first year of existence.

By 1874 the bank had expanded to four branches in the country. The banks were situated in Grahamstown, Middleburg, Craddock and Queenstown. FNB was bought in the same year by Oriental Bank Corporation and this was attributed to recession in the country.

Oriental Bank Corporation experienced financial difficulties in India resulting in the bank’s withdrawal from South Africa. Thus, Bank of Africa was formed in 1879 to takeover Oriental Bank Corporation’s business.

Due to the discovery of gold in the country, the government started a company named the National Bank of the South African Republic Limited. The company would later buy the National Bank in 1912 and NBSAR Limited made further acquisitions to become one of the largest banks in South Africa.

1913 – 1987

National Bank suffered from bad debts and losses in the 1920s. This lead to the bank merging with Anglo-Egyptian Bank and colonial bank in 1925 to form Barclays Bank. Barclays Bank would later restructure and in 1971, its South African operations were renamed Barclays National Bank Limited.

In 1986 Barclays was forced to reduce its shareholding due to disinvestment campaigns towards South Africa and its apartheid policies. It was in 1987 that the bank was renamed First National Bank of South Africa and became a wholly-owned South African company.

1988 – Present

Rand Merchant Bank then bought shares in First National Bank to become the major owner. RMB Holdings merged with Anglo – American Corporation to form First Rand Limited in 1998. Today FNB is a wholly-owned subsidiary of First Rand Limited.

First National Bank has assets in Southern African countries and is the biggest profit maker in the First Rand Limited group. With a net income of over R8 billion.

First National Bank products and services

Personal banking

Personal banking services include transacting, savings and investments, borrowing and insurance. There are also rewards that can be earned by banking with FNB through the eBucks rewards program.

Personal bank accounts

FNB offers five types of cheque accounts that can be bundled with a credit account. The accounts are for different types of income earners from low-income earners to high net clients. FNB also has a non-resident account facility.

Income required start from R120,000 to R1,5 million. However, the Easy account doesn’t require any minimum income to be earned and is considered the entry-level account.

FNB Gold account is a 1st tier cheque account from FNB. With the Gold cheque account, you get access to the gold credit card or you can bundle your cheque and credit accounts with the FNB Fusion Gold Account. To qualify for the gold account you need to earn a minimum of R120,000 per annum.

The Premier account is an account for professionals. To qualify for the FNB premier account you need to earn a minimum income of R300,000.00 per annum. As a holder of thePremier account, you also qualify for a premier credit card or you can get an all in one card called the FNB Fusion Premier Account.

If you are earning R750,000 per annum then you qualify for the FNB private clients cheque account. The account is for private banking whereby you get access to a private bank and more than 1000 airport lounges across the world.

For the ultra-wealthy, FNB offers the Private Wealth cheque account. One of the most prestigious black cards in South Africa. With the private wealth cheque account, you get a private banker and you also get access to the wealth and investment management platform. To qualify for the Private Wealth cheque account you need to earn at least R1.5 million per annum or own assets worth R15 million or more.

Personal financial planning

You can plan for emergencies with FNB by taking out a savings or investment plan that will allow you to access your investment whenever you need it.

There are different options to choose from, such as a basic savings account, 7-day notice account, money on call and money maximiser. Money maximiser requires the highest minimum balance of R100,000.00 with a savings account requiring any amount.

You can save for child education by opening a fixed deposit account that yields interest. Other accounts available to save for child education include 7-day notice plan and 32-day Flexi notice plan.

FNB allows for the planning of retirement by investing in annuities. Whether you want to start with a lump sum or save regularly, FNB does help with retirement savings.

The annuity plan helps with maintaining your lifestyle during retirement. FNB also offers Umbrella pension and Provident fund for retirement or in case of job loss.

FNB Estate planning services help in making sure that your estate is apportioned accordingly to the right beneficiaries. The services include Will drafting, a Trust set up and executor services so that your estate planning needs are met.

Personal borrowing

FNB securities-based lending provides lending based on your securities investment and holds these as collateral. Depending on your Investment portfolio you can access an amount that is relative to your investment portfolio. Although, interest will be subject to your credit profile.

You can get a personal credit card or a petrol card from FNB. Credit cards are different and each credit card has a requirement. Minimum annual income required for a credit card is R84,000 up to R1,500,000.00.

FNB offers vehicle finance services for those buying a new or used vehicle. Home financing is also available to those who want to buy a home or switch to FNB. The bank also caters for Shari’ah property finance.

Personal loans are also available. You can get a personal loan of up to R300,000.00 payable within 60 months. There is also an overdraft facility and a revolving loan facility available for individuals.

Personal Insurance

With FNB you can insure over life, funeral, accidental death, car, home, travel and debt protection. Insurance covers are subject to an assessment of health and personal assets.

Business Banking

Business accounts

FNB offers business accounts and those for specialised industry such as law and accounting and also Islamic business accounts.

A First business zero Account is a digital solution account from sole proprietors. The account is easy to open and comes with a zero monthly account fee. This is still a new product from FNB and many owner-managed businesses enjoy using the account.

The Gold business account is for entry-level companies with a turnover of less than R5 million per year. The account comes with added features such as instant accounting, roadside assistance and industry-specific banking services.

The Platinum business account is for businesses that are growing and with an annual turnover of R5 million to R60 million. The card allows you to access slow lounges both local and international.

Enterprise Business Account is for flourishing businesses with an annual turnover of R60 million or more. You get access to slow lounges worldwide. Also, you get industry-specific banking services tailor-made for your industry needs.

Business borrowing

Businesses can get assets finance from FNB. Assets finance include finance of medical equipment, office equipment, motor vehicles, manufacturing equipment, commercial vehicles and agricultural plan and equipment. Options include buying a brand new asset, buying a second hand or leasing of an asset.

Commercial property finance assists businesses with finding a perfect property finance solution. Property loans are for companies that want to expand into Africa, develop property, owner-occupier and property investor. All these property loan types can be partially or fully funded depending on the company loan needs.

With selective invoice discounting, FNB selects invoices for selected pre-approved of that are then sold by a company to release funds. This helps businesses in meeting their immediate cash flow needs by staying liquid. Selective Invoice Discounting service comes with interest.

Leverage and Acquisition finance from FNB enables businesses to pursue strategic growth opportunities. This is done by providing specialized term debt tailored for specific requirements of your business.

Leverage and acquisition finance include finance over expansion, leveraged recapitalization, acquisitions and generational transactions.

Vumela financing aims at financing equity investments to high growth SMEs struggling with access to finance. Finance include BEE Capital, Growth finance and Expert growth support for SMEs.

Available are business loans and overdraft facility for businesses. Business loans include booster loan, ecoEnergy loan, revolving loans and business loan. These loans are payable within 5 years and are accessible at any time to qualifying businesses.

Business savings and Investments

Easy Management account provides an easy to use investment platform for companies. This investment platform allows you to manage multiple different investments online. The platform helps with tax reporting to SARS and has built-in segregation of duties to ensure greater internal security and efficiency.

The 3rd party Investment manager helps businesses with short and long term business savings and Investments. The minimum amount that can be deposited is R5000 on the Money call and 32 day Flexi Notice plan. The highest amount that can be deposited is R1 million on the cash intelligence plan.

Business Insurance

Businesses can take insurance for their employees or association members to contribute to a funeral. The cover is for the unexpected death of an employee or an association member. Cover starts from R20000 to R60000 with double pay if the main member passes away because of an accident.

Key employees can be insured with key player insurance. Insurance pays up to R200,000.00 should a key player in a business die. This insurance covers for the unforeseen tragedy of key employees and pays a lump sum benefit to a business.

Protection plan covers the business in the event of death or disability of a director or member. The insurance covers outstanding FNB business debt. There are no medicals or underwriting requirements and the cover is immediate.

Benefits and Rewards for businesses and individuals

Businesses can get eBucks rewards from FNB by simply transacting using an FNB business account. FNB further offer businesses a lot of free services that other banks don’t offer.

Instant accounting solutions help small businesses with accounting needs, from capturing journal entries, invoicing, payroll and cash flow monitoring. One can register a company with FNB and also apply for BBBEE certification.

Individuals are rewarded with eBucks points when they use their card at partner stores. You can also access slow lounges if you are a holder of a premier or private clients or private wealth account.

First National Bank Executives

Name Position
Jacques Celliers Chief EEecutive Office
Sizwe Nxedlana CEO : Wealth and investment
Mark Nasila Chief Risk Officer


First National Bank started as a wool financing company to becoming one of the leading banks in Southern Africa. The bank now offers services in many areas of banking.

Since it became a First Rand subsidiary in 1998 the company has rapidly grown to become one of the main competing banks in the SADC region. Expanding to Namibia, Botswana, Mozambique, Tanzania, Lesotho and Swaziland.

First National Bank has managed to use technology to its advantage by helping FNB clients transact wit non-FNB clients using just a cellphone number. With the FNB app, you can now pay for your license disc, check your credit score, cancel debit orders and much more.

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