Apple co-founder hosted by First National Bank in SA

FNB yesterday hosted Steve Wozniak, co-founder of Apple Computers together with the late Steve Jobs and credited as the brain behind the Apple I and Apple II computers, at its annual Leadership Conference.

Managing to get Wozniak to come to South Africa for the Leadership Conference is a coup for FNB, with the bank this week recognised globally as the most innovative bank at the BAI-Finacle Global Banking Innovation Awards 2012, as reported by HumanIPO.

Wozniak is the Chief Scientist at Fusion-IO and published author and NY Times best-selling autobiography – iWoz: From Computer Geek to Cult Icon.

Michael Jordaan, CEO of FNB, said that the bank was honoured to host Wozniak.

“His genius changed the face of personal computing and technology forever. He was motivated to create the first Apples by his desire to make personal computers user-friendly. The FNB culture is very similar as we seek to create a far-reaching ethos of creativity and believe that innovation coupled with ongoing optimism are the keys to success in any organisation,” he said.

“Innovation and leadership are core FNB values. However, we continually seek to re-invigorate this culture in the bank. I encourage my colleagues to continually create new ways of doing things and in so-doing, we are creating entirely new banking products such as the first Banking App in Africa,” he added.

Wozniak elaborated on his involvement with the conference by saying: “I have addressed many conferences, but this is one of the first where I felt that I was so impressed by financial innovations, some of which we have not seen in the US, and are truly game-changing for all other banks. This is one of the few occasions where I have met bankers who think like IT geeks.

“After my short time with the FNB leadership team, it is evident that they live by their culture of creativity and their passion to develop new banking technologies for years to come.”

According to Jordaan, FNB will be announcing its 2012 Innovators Awards that showcase the bank’s internal creativity and new products.

“Innovation is at the very heart of our business success. Companies that fail to innovate will not only fall behind their competitors, they are unlikely to survive in an intensely competitive economy,” he said.

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