- SEC Extends Recapitalisation Deadline
Again, the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) has announced the extension of the deadline for market operators to comply with the minimum capital requirement by three months, from the initial December 31, 2016. This means that operators have till March 31st to increase their capital base.
The extension followed a plea by stockbrokers, who had requested additional six months to enable them comply successfully. The fact that the market regulator keeps pushing forward the deadline is indicative of the extent of illiquidity in the market, which is characterised by economic meltdown and dwindling purchasing power of the masses, thereby making investment in stocks unattractive.
But full compliance of the Minimum Operating Standards (MOS) for dealing members would help the market to develop robust controls; strong governance framework and effective human capital. This will enable them achieve best-in-class operations in order to compete on a global level for the benefit of investors and the capital market.
SEC, Nigeria’s apex capital market regulator had, last year, granted an extended window of 15 months to December 30, 2016, from the initial September 30, 2015 deadline to capital market operators that failed to meet the initial recapitalisation deadline to comply with the new minimum capital requirements for their functions.
The Commission had in December 2013, announced major increases in minimum capital requirements for capital market functions under a new minimum capital structure that was initially scheduled to take off by January 1, 2015. It however extended the deadline to September 30, 2015.
A breakdown of the new recapitalisation requirements are as follows:
Broker/dealer from N70 million to N300 million – 329 per cent rise;
Broker from N40 million to N200 million – 400 per cent;
Dealer N30 million to N100 million – 233 per cent;
Issuing houses N150 million to N200 million;
Underwriter N100 million to N200 million – 100 per cent; Trustees N40 million to N300 million; Rating agencies, and portfolio and fund managers N20 million to N150 million – 650 per cent respectively;Registrar N50 million to N150 million;Corporate investment adviser unchanged at N5 million, and; Individual investment advisers N500,000 to N2 million – 300 per cent.
The new Executive Committee, Association of Stockbroking Houses of Nigeria (ASHON), led by its Chairman, Patrick Ezeagu, during a courtesy call to the Commission last week, had solicited for the grace period for the recapitalisation to be extended by six months.
But the Director General, SEC, Mounir Gwarzo, granted the Association’s request by extending the recapitalisation exercise by three months.He restated the Commission’s resolve to promote the development of Commodity Exchanges in the country, noting it is willing to support the Lagos Commodities & Futures Exchange being midwifed by ASHON.
Gwarzo insisted on the three months extension, aligning with their argument that stockbrokers carry equities in their balance sheet and prices of equities have gone down thus affecting their capital
The Group also noted with concern the proposed amendment of Rule 56(1) – Function of Brokers (Harmonisation of Registration requirement for incidental functions). According to them:“The development will preclude brokers from providing Investment advice to their clients/Public.”
ASHON, while acknowledging not knowing the thinking behind the proposed amendment, solicited for the reconsideration of the proposal. The call is based on the backdrop of the so called value addition provided by brokers/dealers in providing investment advice to their clients.
They argued that “a lot of stock broking houses had well established research desks that not only help to broadcast market information on a continuous basis, but also carry out in-depth analysis and provide opinions to complex financial issues to their clients.”
The Association also expressed their dismay over the Federal Government’s sole reliance and emphasis on monetary policy for macroeconomic management to the detriment of the capital market, while accepting to look at the Investment and Securities Tribunal (IST) funding proposal being championed by SEC and NSE.
Farmforte, Others Signs MoU To Strengthen and Sustain Growth in Agricultural Sector
Farmforte Limited has signed a strategic Memorandum of Understanding with the Agricultural Fresh Produce Growers and Exporters Association of Nigeria; HYBR, a pan-African innovation firm; and ALTS, a consulting and strategy development firm.
The firm said in a statement on Sunday that the partnership would strengthen common interest cooperation and stimulate inclusive and sustainable growth within the agricultural sector, by capitalising on the synergy and comparative advantage offered by each organisation.
Speaking during the signing ceremony, Farmforte Co-Chief Executive Officer, Osazuwa Osayi, said, “Our mid to long-term strategic goals are further reaffirmed, as this partnership will facilitate the sharing of knowledge, ideas, and expertise across the agricultural sector.
“We will collectively address initiatives and approaches concerning agricultural investments, food security, and the overall robustness of the value chain.”
He said the collaboration would also unlock the full potential of the sector and place it on a renewed path for success, especially within a post-pandemic economy.
The President of AFGEAN, Tajuddeen Dantata, said, “By creating dialogue and fostering investment in the horticulture sector, this partnership will endeavor to support Farmforte in its exporting efforts by improving operational efficacy and cost-savings, while ultimately driving socio-economic growth in the country.”
The Chief Executive Officer, HYBR, Charles Ojei, said to drive inclusion, sustainability, job creation, and Nigeria’s overall economic growth, the optimisation of the agriculture value chain was critical.
“This collaboration is a fusion of the complementary capabilities of all partners to move a bigger agenda forward.”
The Managing Partner, ALTS, Akintunde Sawyerr, said, “The goal of this partnership is to support Farmforte’s vision of becoming the largest agribusiness by 2035 via scalable and world-class innovation across its enterprise.”
OctaFX Launches Dual Life Campaign
International Forex broker, OctaFX has launched a socially conscious marketing campaign called Dual Life aimed at simplifying forex trading and helping Nigerians create wealth.
A statement by the organisation on Monday said that the marketing campaign would celebrate the superpowers of Nigerians who committed their time and efforts to two or more jobs and were successful at each one of them.
It stated that the #DualLifewithOctaFX campaign had influencers in the Nigerian lifestyle and entertainment space such as Toke Makinwa, Bovi, Denola Grey, Timini Egbuson, and others at the core of the engagements, establishing the other sides of the celebrities and influencers as entrepreneurs.
While speaking about the campaign, the Marketing Manager, EMEA, OctaFX, Ali Nwadike said, “We wanted to position forex trading as that activity young Nigerians and everyone else, can engage in, even while focusing on their careers.
“From findings, most young Nigerians today work two or more jobs to pay the bills and attain financial freedom. But, we don’t get to talk about this often or appreciate the efforts, hence the #DualLifewithOctaFX campaign.
“While some see their jobs as a burden, we want people to see it as an achievement; and promote the school of thought that says one, two, many jobs is not bad especially when you are trying to create wealth.”
Nwadike added that more Nigerians would be exposed to the beauty of keeping their regular jobs and careers while making more money from forex trading with the OctaFX Trading App.
The statement also affirmed that OctaFX had made necessary arrangements from assembling forex experts and compiling training guides in the simplest and relatable form.
AfDB Appoints Dr. Beth Dunford as Vice President
The African Development Bank Group (AfDB) has announced the appointment of Dr. Beth Dunford as its Vice President, Agriculture, Human and Social Development. The appointment becomes effective from July 1, 2021.
A statement explained that Dunford, a national of the United States of America, brings extensive experience to this role. She has held senior-level leadership positions in the US government, where she managed large and complex programs, working with the private sector, civil society, and multilateral and bilateral institutions, as well as with African governments, to deliver agricultural, social and human development impact at scale.
Prior to her appointment, Dunford worked as the Assistant to the Administrator in the U.S. Agency for International Development’s (USAID’s) Bureau for Resilience and Food Security, as well as the Deputy Coordinator for Development for Feed the Future, the U.S. government’s global hunger and food security initiative.
“In this dual role, she coordinated Feed the Future across multiple U.S. government agencies, oversaw a $1 billion annual budget and leveraged millions of direct private sector investment annually. In this capacity, she also coordinated a $2.3 billion Feed the Future presidential initiative across 11 US government agencies and forged partnerships within the private sector and civil society targeted at reducing hunger and poverty.
“She also led USAID’s technical and regional expertise focused on improving agriculture-led growth, resilience, nutrition and water security, sanitation and hygiene,” the statement added.
President of the African Development Bank, Dr. Akinwumi Adesina said he was delighted to appoint Dunford as Vice President to lead the Bank’s work on Agriculture, Human and Social Development.
“Beth is a strategic and effective leader with deep knowledge and impressive track record in designing and delivering highly impactful large-scale programs that have helped in lifting 27 million people out of poverty in 36 countries,” he added.
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