- Chinese Companies’ Investments in Nigeria Hit $20bn –CCCN
The quantum of investment in the Nigerian economy by Chinese companies has hit $20bn, the President, China Chambers of Commerce in Nigeria, Mr Ye Shuijin, has disclosed.
He explained that the 160 Chinese firms operating in the country had also employed over 200,000 Nigerians, noting that the companies were promoting what he called the ‘people to people’ cultural diplomacy of the Belt and Road Initiative of the People’s Republic of China in Nigeria.
Speaking to journalists in Abuja on Wednesday, Shuijin, who is the Managing Director, China Geo-engineering Company, stated that his company, which was established in Nigeria in 1983, had offices in 30 states.
He said that CGC, a construction firm, had faced and surmounted various challenges, adding that the improved infrastructure development in the country, however, was encouraging many more Chinese businessmen and firms to invest in the economy.
He said, “I believe the Chinese investment in Nigeria now is about $20b and we have employed over 200,000 Nigerians. Our workforce is 95 per cent Nigerians.
“We also worked with the Industrial Training Fund to train over 1,000 Nigerians last year and we have similarly trained 350 Nigerians in agriculture export. We have sponsored 30 students to China on scholarship as part of our advanced capacity building for Nigerians.”
The CGC boss insisted that members of the Chinese Chambers of Commerce were held to the strictest standards in service delivery.
Shuijin noted that the Chinese investors faced a difficult time during the 2015 recession, stating that many companies could not pay their workers because they were owed by the Federal Government.
When asked if the FG had paid off its debts to the Chinese firms handling various projects, Shuijin stated, “The government still owe us for the Murtala Muhammed expressway project in Abuja which was completed in 2010. In 2015, we faced payment issues because of the recession, but what we did was to ensure the payment of our members of staff, not only CGC but all our chamber’s members.”
He added, “Many Chinese companies had to bring in money from China to pay their workers. The recession almost wiped off Chinese companies in Nigeria. At the end of 2016, the government commenced payment, but we still have many challenges.”
The Chinese Chambers President refuted reports that ex-prison inmates were being brought into the country to work as expatriates, insisting that it was not possible to do such a thing, adding that the Chinese embassy monitored the Chinese companies.
Commenting on the allegation of land-grabbing levelled against the Ogun-Guandong Free Trade Zone by the host community, Shuijin advised the parties to engage in dialogue over the issue or seek legal redress.
FBNQuest Mutual Funds returns 104%
FBNQuest Asset Management, a subsidiary of FBN Holdings, has held yearly general meetings for five mutual funds managed by the firm.
The funds are the FBN Balanced Fund, FBN Smart Beta Equity Fund, FBN Eurobond Fund, FBN Bond Fund and the FBN Money Market Fund.
The Fund Manager continues to deliver commendable results, as demonstrated by strong performance across all its funds.
The FBN Bond Fund was the best performing of the mutual funds, returning 104.20 per cent over five-year while its US Dollar fund, the FBN Eurobond, returned 48.43 per cent in US dollars over the same period.
The Managing Director of FBNQuest Asset Management, Ike Onyia, said: “Our strong performance track record is premised on the research capabilities, insights and experience of our portfolio management and research teams. Our mutual funds serve as useful investment options useful in formulating unique and value-adding investment strategies for various client segments. This is because our range of mutual funds cut across various asset classes including equities, bonds and money markets.”
“Our funds remain easily accessible, as our goal is to continue to drive financial inclusion and democratise wealth creation, by supporting the financiainclusion and democratise wealth creation, by supporting the financial security aspiration of investors” he added.
Increasingly, financial markets are becoming complex to navigate and as a result, it will not be out of place for investors to actively seek the inclusion of mutual funds in their investment portfolio, which will serve as the structured gateway to such markets. Seeking the help of experienced financial planners to assist you in establishing your risk tolerance levels and advise on suitable options is highly recommended.
SEC Warns Against Proliferation of Unregistered Investment Platforms
The Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) has warned the investing public to be wary of the proliferation of unregistered online investment and trading platforms facilitating access to trading in securities listed in foreign markets.
SEC’s warning was conveyed via a circular issued in Abuja, Thursday to capital market operators.
It advised the investing public to seek clarification as may be required via its established channels of communication on investment products.
The circular read: “The attention of the SEC has been drawn to the existence of several providers of online investment and trading platforms which purportedly facilitate direct access of the investing public in the Federal Republic of Nigeria to securities of foreign companies listed on securities exchanges registered in other jurisdictions.
“These platforms also claim to be operating in partnership with capital market operators (CMOs) registered with the Commission.”
The Commission categorically stated that by the provisions of Sections 67-70 of the Investments and Securities Act (ISA), 2007 and Rules 414 & 415 of the SEC Rules and Regulations, only foreign securities listed on any exchange registered in Nigeria may be issued, sold or offered for sale or subscription to the Nigerian public.
Accordingly, the SEC notified CMOs who work in concert with the referenced online platforms of the Commission’s position and advised them to desist henceforth.
Public to seek clarification as may be required via its established channels of communication on investment products advertised through conventional or online mediums.
SoftBank Reaps $33 Billion Coupang Windfall
SoftBank Group Corp on Thursday racked up a roughly $33 billion gain on paper through the public market debut of South Korea’s largest e-commerce company, Coupang Inc, the latest sign of a dramatic turnaround for its $100 billion Vision Fund.
Shares of Coupang opened 81% above their offer price on Thursday, after the company raised $4.6 billion in the U.S. stock market’s biggest initial public offering this year.
SoftBank paid around $3 billion for a 37% stake in the company, according to sources familiar with earlier fund-raising, giving it a roughly $33 billion headline profit if prices hold.
Coupang’s hugely successful stock market launch is welcome news for SoftBank, which is grappling with the collapse of billions of dollars worth of funds linked to Britain’s Greensill Capital, a supply chain finance start-up.
Vision Fund is Greensill’s biggest backer.
The Japanese conglomerate last month reported third-quarter net profit ballooned more than 20 times thanks to a recovery at the Vision Fund, a huge venture capital operation famous for investing early in Uber and other tech industry startup successes.
Only a year ago, SoftBank had been smarting from the flopped IPO and collapse in value of office sharing firm WeWork, raising questions over whether Chief Executive Officer Masayoshi Son had lost his midas touch and threatening plans to establish a successor to Vision.
The COVID-19 pandemic has also forced Son to sell assets but a second deal reported by Reuters on Thursday bodes well for VF II, a second, smaller fund.
The $225 million late-stage funding round for healthcare startup Forward Health was its first major investment this year, following a pickup in activity and the group’s fortunes in the second half of 2020.
The Vision Fund also made $11 billion on a blockbuster market launch of DoorDash Inc in December, which valued the food delivery company at more than $70 billion.
It also made gains on home seller Opendoor Technologies Inc’s initial offering in December.
The fund still holds large stakes in China’s biggest ride-hailing firm Didi, as well as Uber’s Southeast Asian rival Grab.
SoftBank is also trying to ride the mania for special purpose acquisition companies, launching a handful of blank-check firms this year, although none of them have found investment targets yet.
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