Absa Bank has promoted Michelle Knowles to pan-Africa group head of trade and working capital, it announced last week.

Knowles succeeds Bohani Hlungwane, who now becomes managing director and group head of cash management at Absa. She was previously the bank’s pan-African head of trade and working capital product, a role that will now be filled by internal hire John Molanda.

In her new position, Knowles will be responsible for strategy setting, execution and profit and loss ownership.

She tells GTR that her priorities will be to focus on delivering growth and improving the bank’s market position as well as future-proofing the business by defining its structure in terms of markets, corridors, segments and products.

Knowles has over 25 years of trade finance experience, having previously worked for Barclays Africa and other regional banks before joining Absa in 2020. She also serves as the secretary/treasurer for the Bankers Association of Finance and Trade.

Knowles tells GTR: “In the last decade, we have established a strong business, and our performance shows the commitment of our employees and our excellent team of leaders. We are dedicated to taking the business to the next level and achieving the ambitions we have set.”