Sally is a 1986 law graduate from the University of Lagos with over 35 years of corporate professional experience, having spent over 25 years in Banking and Finance, over 10 years in the Oil and gas sectors, 2 years in Manufacturing, 1 year in Information Technology, all at Executive Director levels and over 6 years in Public Service; was appointed Director General of Nigeria’s apex tourism agency, The Nigerian Tourism Development Corporation (NTDC) in 2013. At the expiration of her tenure, she began financial Consulting for Oil and Gas and Information Technology sectors until she was invited in 2018 by His Excellency, Chief Willie Obiano, the Executive Governor of Anambra state to serve in his cabinet, initially as the Honourable Commissioner for Ministry of Diaspora Affairs, Indigenous Artworks, Culture and Tourism, and most recently in charge of the Ministry of Petroleum Resources, Solid Minerals, Tertiary Education, ICT, Science, Innovation, and Meteorology.
She began her career in 1987, as a pioneer staff in the Treasury department of Abacus Merchant Bank Limited (one of the first indigenous banks in Nigeria) and subsequently in 1989 joined International Merchant Bank Limited (former First National Bank of Chicago, where she spent 17 years, variously, in Treasury Department, International Trade Department, Operations Department, Loan Recovery Department, Capital Markets Department, managed Shareholder/Community & Investor Relations, handled Human Capital Management, and General Administration.
She was the Chief Foreign Exchange Dealer of the Bank before her appointment as the Company Secretary/Legal Adviser to the Board, and Head of Support Services division, the youngest at the time for a publicly quoted company in Nigeria.
Sally managed two Public Offers for the Bank that later became known as IMB Plc and now FCMB Plc. She also actively led 3 restructuring exercises for the bank and propelled its conversion from Merchant banking to Commercial banking, whilst managing its relationships with the CBN, NSE, SEC and other regulatory authorities.
Having built strong contacts in Government Agencies, Regulatory Authorities and the Public Sector, she rose through the ranks to the position of Director of Business Development in 2002 in IMB Plc. and a non-Executive Director of IMB Morgan Plc., whilst still the Company Secretary/Legal Adviser. She was instrumental to resolving a major shareholder crisis in IMB in 2003.
In 2004 Sally was headhunted by Lafarge Africa Plc as the Company Secretary/Legal and Head of Support Services, the most senior female executive in Africa at the time. She successfully led a change management exercise called ‘New Dawn’ whilst also supervising the Community Relations department, Communications department, Government Affairs department, Legal department, Board Secretariat and Administration Departments.
She managed Community, Shareholder/Investor Relations, successfully resolved shareholders’ versus Management discontent and calmed community agitations for Lafarge Africa Plc whilst stabilizing the operations at the manufacturing plants.
Sally subsequently managed a Public Offer for Lafarge Africa Plc before being invited to Coca-Cola Africa as the Public Affairs, Community and Communication Director for ten countries in Africa.
At Coca Cola Africa, she led the team for the FIFA World Cup trophy tour to Nigeria and worked closely with the Government to secure top level approvals for the Company’s Tariffs and Excise Duties for Raw Material Imports and Product Launch Initiatives of the Company. Sally was also a Director of the American Business Council, a private sector consortium of American-owned companies that proffered solutions to public sector challenges faced by private sector operators.
She also managed Coca Cola Africa’s relationships with NAFDAC, SON (Standard Organization of Nigeria) and the Presidency.
In 2006, Sally was invited to Allied Energy Limited, an upstream oil & gas company, as Group Executive Director, Finance and Administration, a company in a Joint Venture with Nigeria Agip Exploration and Oando Plc. Her scope of work covered the restructuring of the Group of Companies, in which she streamlined operations, initiated business process re-engineering, and handled strategic planning for the Group. She was a Director in Arc Oil & Gas Ltd, Alliance Oil Producing Ltd, and Oceanic Consultants Ltd.
Sally also managed the Allied Energy Group’s relationships with the DPR (Department of Petroleum Resources), NNPC, PPMC, Oando and Petroleum Ministers of Oil Producing West African countries. She was also the Chairman of the Agip/NAOC/Allied Financial Committee (FINCOM).
Sally arranged an IPO (Initial Public Offering) for Allied Energy in 2008.
In 2009 Sally began to run her own group of companies (TSM Microfinance Bank Limited & TSM Professional Services- a tax audit firm) whilst veering into Social Entrepreneurship through ‘‘The Sally Mbanefo’’ (TSM) Foundation which she set up in 2007 on HIV/AIDS Awareness, Youth Education and Empowerment, supporting over 20 schools to date.
In 2011, she was appointed by the Central Bank of Nigeria to Keystone Bank Ltd as Executive Director, Commercial Banking South South, South East, and Mid-West to be part of a team to restructure the bank and bring it back to profitability. She later became Executive Director Commercial Banking, covering the North and South Bank, and acting MD of the bank at intervals until her appointment as the Director General of The Nigerian Tourism Development Corporation (NTDC) in 2013.
She introduced the Domestic Tourism Campaign in Nigeria and worked very closely with the Embassies and foreign community to promote collaboration between Nigeria and the foreign community, also worked with the Immigration Office to initiate the “Tourism Visa on Arrival”.
At the expiration of her tenure, Sally began Consulting in the Oil and Gas sector until her appointment in 2018 as a cabinet member of Anambra State Government; initially to manage the Ministry of Diaspora Affairs, Indigenous Artworks, Culture and Tourism, and in 2020 she took charge of the Ministry of Petroleum Resources , Solid Minerals, Tertiary Education, ICT, Science, Technology, and Meteorology, until the end of the administration in February 2022; at this point she registered for an executive MBA programme at the university of Lagos and took up a job as the Deputy Managing Director of ATMX Group Dubai ( LTT OIL & GAS , Africoat, PAI Engr., Niger Onshore Off shore).
Sally is a member of The Society for Corporate Governance Nigeria, a member of The Institute of Directors (IoD), an Honorary Senior Member of The Chartered Institute of Bankers, Past Director, American Business Council, a member of the Nigerian Bar Association, member and fellow of the Academy for Entrepreneurial Studies. Also a member of the Lagos Motor Boat club and the Lagos Yacht Club.
AFRICAN DIASPORA ECONOMIC COMMUNITY
She was also a serving board member of:
She was a member of the following Governing Council Committees for state owned Tertiary Institutions:
She is a prolific Artist, Sculptor and Painter, who loves riding horses, reading, travelling, and working with the youth. Sally is also a Prayer Coach.
Sally is blessed with warm and loving children aged 30, 28, 26 years, as well as a grandchild.