Called to the Nigerian Bar in 1999, after graduating from the University of Lagos, Obasi practiced in Northern Nigeria and Lagos for five years, post-Call, before joining the banking industry in 2003. His last banking job was as (Senior Manager) Country Head, Business Support and Resolution (BS&R) – the debt management and recoveryarm of Stanbicibtc bank Nigeria, where he had responsibility for 47 Team Members, handling the Corporate and Investment Banking, Business and Commercial Banking as well as the Personal Banking Credit portfolios. In that role he reported directly into the Chief Executive of the Bank, with dotted lines to the Heads of BS&R for Personal & Business Banking and Corporate & Investment Banking for the Rest of Africa Division of Standard Bank, in Johannesburg.
The record of his leadership and performance on the role is the stuff of legend, to say the least, as the team crashed NPL ratios to below 5 percent in each of the last three years of his stewardship, drove up NPL recoveries to over 4bn annual average over the same period and progressively moved the After-Write-Off Recoveries from N150m in 2015(having joined in August of that year), to N1.5bn in 2016, N2.1bn in 2017, N2.5bn in 2018. When he exited in 2019 November, AWOR was on N2.3bn and still counting, with at least N2.5bn awaiting approval to close with distress sales that had buyers standing-by.
In the period 2015 to 2019, his team pulled over fifty lawsuits out of Court, reaching compromise settlements that released written-off funds to the bank, saving it both Contingent Liability botheration and litigation costs. Property sales records went up over 600 per cent under his watch, and a hitherto docile and pedantic BS&R Team bloomed, blossomed and performed real wonders under his leadership.
Recovery-related litigation and Negotiation, Receivership and Insolvency, Loan Monitoring, Restructuring, Rehabilitation and Customer Assistance, as well as Legal Drafting and Conveyancing are his special practice areas. Obasi is also an avid scholar in the area of Cybersecurity Law, and is the Alternate Legal Adviser of the Information Security Society of Africa, Nigeria (ISSAN). He is also on the Board of Trustees of the Information Security Institute (currently in formation).
Obasi’s hands-on experience garnered over 16 years in debt recovery roles in various banks – IMB, FINBANK, UBA, Mainstreet, Union Bank and StanbicIBTC are an invaluable resource to the firm.