TymeBank appoints Karl Westvig as CEO

Admire Moyo
By Admire Moyo, ITWeb's news editor.
Johannesburg, 08 Jul 2024
Karl Westvig, TymeBank CEO.
Karl Westvig, TymeBank CEO.

Digital bank TymeBank has appointed Karl Westvig as its new chief executive officer.

In a statement, the bank says current CEO Coenraad Jonker will turn his full attention to his role as executive chairman of Tyme Group, where he will drive the growth of the multi-country digital banking group. The changes are effective from 1 October.

The leadership changes come as TymeBank looks to expand its product offerings and services for consumers and commercial clients, as it transforms into a “full-service” bank.

TymeBank chairman Thabani Jali says: “TymeBank has reshaped the banking landscape in South Africa, and the bank is on course to reach 10 million customers this year. We believe the time is right to redeploy key executives into positions that will best serve both TymeBank and the group.

“Coen’s contribution to TymeBank’s growth story so far makes him the ideal person to lead Tyme Group into the next growth phase in preparation for a public listing, and the board has full confidence that Karl can build on Coen’s accomplishments and help us to further grow market share in South Africa,” adds Jali.

According to the digital bank, Westvig, currently TymeBank’s chief executive for retail and business banking, brings a wealth of leadership, lending and fintech expertise, as well as a proven track record to his new role.

As a founder member of various local and international finance companies, including the RCS Group and Retail Capital (now a division of TymeBank), it says Westvig has built a legacy of strong teams and successful start-ups.

Retail Capital has not only provided funding to the SME sector directly, but through embedded fintech solutions, Westvig successfully launched finance products by partnering with over 10 industry-leading and listed companies, it adds.

His adventurous approach to business and leadership pioneered financial inclusion for SMEs in the South African market, says the bank, adding that since joining TymeBank’s leadership team, Westvig has been instrumental in spearheading business banking and charting the bank’s lending proposition.

“A huge thank you to Coen for his exemplary leadership – successfully steering the bank to break-even during an extremely tough economic period, while also firmly positioning TymeBank as a credible alternative to legacy banking in the country is truly inspiring. I am excited about taking up this assignment at such a pivotal time for the business,” says Westvig.

“TymeBank’s rapid growth has been phenomenal, and I’ve clearly joined a talented team with a strong foundation. My focus will be to realise our professed goal of being a top three bank in terms of customer satisfaction, growth in customer numbers and shareholder returns.”

In January, TymeBank said it became the first digital bank to make a profit in South Africa and on the continent, after reaching its first month of profitability in December 2023.

According to the African Rainbow Capital-controlled bank, the milestone, which came less than five years since it launched to the public in February 2019, marked a pivotal moment as SA’s only black-controlled bank.

The bank’s co-founder, Jonker has served as TymeBank CEO for just over two years, leading the company to its milestone of reaching profitability in December 2023.

“I am grateful for what we have managed to achieve together at TymeBank. At a group level, GOTyme Bank is already the fastest-growing bank in the Philippines, with three million customers. We have now entered Vietnam with our first product and aim to be live in Indonesia by the end of the year. Our ambition is to list the business in 2028,” says Jonker.

Currently valued at close to $1 billion (R18 billion), TymeBank is one of the world’s fastest-growing digital banks and the first digital bank to reach profitability in Africa, says the bank, which now has 12.5 million customers.