Story - Delphine Ndiaye


‘Our most important task is to show people they can trust us.’

She adored her father who never took a day off. ‘I work so hard because I want my father to be proud of me, although he’s no longer there’. She’s very athletic: ‘Every day before going to office I have a workout for an hour’, and she works in a man’s world: ‘It’s up to us women to show our abilities.’
‘I had a close relationship with my father; he was my role model. He worked so hard, I can’t remember him taking a day off. Only when he had to stay at home for a month because of a rupture of his Achilles heel tendon, he was not at work. But he couldn’t sit still; he started filming our family and our neighbourhood during our sporting and recreational activities. He always gave the best of himself, so I also want to give the best of myself. I was born in Dakar and we had a wonderful childhood. We lived in Mermoz, an area with many different nationalities. I played with French, Spanish, Danish and African children. Sports mainly, like basketball, tennis, skateboarding. My whole family loves sports; my father started his career as a gym-teacher, my mother was a basketball player in the Senegalese national team. My father did well thanks to his hard work; at the end of his career he was a director at the ministry of Sports.’

‘I started working for Oragroup in 2009. I had studied international marketing in France and had been working for the TV channel Eurosport for five years before going back to Senegal in 2005. After a year and a half working as a sales manager for my own company specialized in 3D graphics and animation, I was a bit bored. So when a friend suggested I should attend a job fair, I went. I left my CV at CBAO’s, one of the biggest banks in West Africa at the time, and after a telephone call and three job interviews I was put in charge of communication.

In 2008, CBAO merged with Attijariwafa Bank Senegal and I oversaw all the communication around the merger. In 2009, my former CEO, knowing my experience in merger communication offered me a job in Togo with a special task: to do all the communication around the rebranding in 2011 of Financial Bank to Orabank. I had some experience in rebranding and I was very excited to be able to start from the beginning. I handled the communication around acquisitions, mergers, in short, all stages that gave its new identity to Orabank. I’m still very proud of having done that. I am now responsible for all the communication of Orabank. That means I deal with and coordinate the head of communication in our twelve branches, our communication agency, our press agency. I take care of the corporate identity guidelines and Orabank’s image.’

‘We are a commercial bank and we always try to be innovative, to change things for the better. We operate in twelve African countries and among our clients you find big international companies, but also individuals with only little savings in their account. We want to be everybody’s bank not only the bank of big corporate. We want to be close to our clients and help them as quick and as best we can. Off course we want to contribute more to sustainability and to a more developed Africa. One of the ways to do this is to create jobs, and I think our activities really matter to help trigger economic development.’

‘For Africans, it’s not self-evident to have a bank account, around 30 percent of the people in Sub-Saharan Africa have one. Take for example an elder in a small village in Togo or Benin. He likes to have his money in his own house, instead of taking it to a bank. We have branches in the cities, but in the rural areas, it’s more difficult; we can’t be everywhere. People don’t like to travel big distances to bring or get money, that’s also a reason people don’t have a bank account. One must be aware of this, doing communication for a bank. For me this is a very important task: show people they can trust us. That we’re there for them.’

‘There are not many women in the banking world and we were lucky to get a female CEO at Oragroup. I have no problems working in a world dominated by men. It’s up to us women, to show our qualities and skills. Like my father always said: you must work hard to get somewhere. But off course, in Africa boys and girls do not have the same opportunities. Especially in the traditional rural areas the women have a traditional role and girls don’t always go to school or must leave at a young age. In the cities things are changing. The question if a girl can have a career, depends highly of the place she was born and of course the wealth of her parents.’

‘I’m divorced, I have a lovely daughter of 15 years and I love horses. Right now, I do a lot of work for the Club Hippique in Lomé, Togo’s capital. I started horse riding one year after my daughter did. She had so much fun, it was catching. And yes, I also played basketball, like my mother. My father was a basketball referee as well. So in my childhood during the weekends, you could find us all around a basketball field.

Where I will be in fifteen years? Certainly, not in Africa, because my daughter wants to study medicine in  the United States or in Australia. She’s a big fan of Grey’s Anatomy you see. But these countries are expensive. Maybe we go to France medicine studies are recognised to be one of the best and where it’s cheaper. But we’ll see, first she must have her diploma. I probably will still do communication, but not for a bank. I have devoted myself a hundred percent at Oragroup; working for another bank would somehow feel a bit like treason!

Delphine Ndiaye

Born in Dakar, Senegal
2000 – 2005
Head of Commercial and Programme Consolidation, Eurosport
2006 – 2009 Director communication, Attijariwafa bank
2009 - director communication Oragroup SA

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