In late 2015 and early 2016, there was a spate of banking failures in Nairobi. Among these was an institution, The Chase Bank Kenya Ltd. There is no relationship between this Chase Bank Kenya and the more august JPMorgan Chase Bank, headquartered in New York.

More recently, and closer to home, we have watched the debacle around SAA financing through "boutique financier" BnP Capital, at a fee high enough to make a taxpayer weep (SAA: Running on empty). As in the case with East Africa, BnP Capital has no links to the stately BNP Paribas, headquartered in Paris.

What’s in a name indeed? Some people may be tempted to think this sort of naming is crafted to make partners, customers and the public believe the institution is of more substance than it actually is.

That the board of SAA seemingly gets fooled by such a cheap trick smacks at the very least of commercial naiveté, if not gross incompetence. The great SA public deserves better.

Dick Coates,

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