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For VFD Group, Africa is the goal – Adeniyi Adenubi, Executive Director, VFD Group Plc

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Niyi Adenubi is the Co-Founder and Executive Director, Institutional Business & Investor Relations of VFD Group Plc, a proprietary investment company based in Lagos. Adenubi, a trained investment banker with over 10 years of hands-on experience in Private Equity, Venture Capitalism, and Financial Advisory started his banking career in his mid-20s in London and at various instances, he has played specific oversight on Corporate Governance and Financial Advisory roles to numerous firms both in Nigeria and in the United Kingdom, most notably with the Royal Bank of Scotland and ATOS Consulting.

 In this recent interview with Eleni Giokos of CNN Marketplace Africa, Adenubi, bares his mind on a range of  issues including the success of the Group’s digital bank, V bank, and expansion plans.

 At what point did you begin to think of starting a firm?

In my mid-20s, I was an investment banker in London.  After about three or four years in investment banking consulting, I started thinking about my country and the continent. I started thinking of how to build businesses and create values in that space. My only expertise is investment banking so very quickly I set up an investment management firm called Paragon Partners and since that time we created 10-year strategies to build out initially a financial service holding company now a diversified investment company looking at financial services, power, education, and media – which is VFD Group.

Reading through the VFD Group corporate strategies, it is interesting to see a word about holding a positively socially conscious ecosystem. Do you really go in with this socially conscious kind of agenda?

I think the balance is extremely important. When we came up with those concepts, for us sustainability was very important. So, we want a sustainable business that is profitable but is also socially conscious. We are building people; we are lifting people out of poverty; we are giving people a chance to access capital either debt financing for their businesses or equity financing for their businesses as they go on to employ people.  And those things matter to us because without that sustainability you cannot build that ecosystem and a country that has viable jobs for the young population. That was very key to what we were trying to achieve. However, if you do all those things and you do not make money you are also unsustainable

In terms of market shares, what are you aiming for and what is the next phase for you?

Some of that information is private and confidential but what I will tell you is that we are on track till half year 2021 to gain about 15% of the total banking market for our platform and once we do that we’ve ascertained that V bank is already a success. We would go from there to build.  The initial plan was 15% to 20% of the initial banking market and either way, we are on track to meet that target even before half year next year.

What is the most exciting sector for you right now, where are you seeing the best opportunity coupled with the social impact you say. Where are you seeing the best alignment at the moment?

I will say easily it’s in financial technology.  I know that’s been oversold but I think the story of Africa cannot over-sell the concept of involving 80% to 90% of the entire population bringing them into the financial space and banking sector.  Till today, I think we still have about 40 million accounts, out of a population of 200 million. We will probably look at the power sector too as it is also an interesting space; Fintech also, definitely; and as we go along, we continue to transition.

Clearly, you and your team are thinking of the long term so what is the plan in 5 to 10 years, do you want to be a Pan African banking giant or group across many sectors?

We want to be a Pan African Investment company. We are already looking at Ghana and we have started a conversation in Ghana.  We are looking to deploy a small payment bank in Ghana using the V Bank platform. From Ghana, we also looking at Kenya- it’s a very exciting market.  We definitely have ambition for Africa and if we get lucky in our lifetime, we will go global, but I am quite hopeful that we can land in Africa.

CEO/Founder Investors King Ltd, a foreign exchange research analyst, contributing author on New York-based Talk Markets and Investing.com, with over a decade experience in the global financial markets.

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TAJBank Drives Educational Infrastructural Development in Akwa Ibom

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TAJBank Drives Educational Infrastructural Development in Akwa Ibom

TAJBank, Nigeria’s most innovative Bank has reiterated its commitment to contributing it quota to the growth and development of the Nigerian education sector.

This occurred at the recent commissioning of new infrastructure at Saint John Paul School, Akwa Ibom State with several dignitaries in attendance such as Senator Godswill Akpabio, Minister of Niger Delta Affairs, Chairman of the school, Her Excellency, Mrs Uloma Akpabio, The Sole Administrator, NDDC, Mr Akwa Efiong and other dignitaries.

The special guest of honour, Minister of Niger Delta Affairs, Senator Godswill Akpabio, commended the Bank for believing in the vision of the school and accepting to provide financing for expansion of the institution’s infrastructures. This, he said, was an evident indication of the Bank’s willingness to collaborate with credible bodies in its drive to contribute to the significant improvement of the nation’s education sector.

Senator Akpabio also urged the Bank to open a branch in Uyo as a priority once it gains its national license.

Representing the Bank at the event, Mr Nasir .T. Usman, acknowledged the enormous strides that the leadership of Saint John Paul School Akwa Ibom has made to fill in the gap of quality education in Nigeria taking into cognizance critical factors such the need for affordability to the general populace. He noted that the results were evident in the school’s nine years of existence as it had succeeded in molding students of great intellectual output and high moral standing.

In just over one year of operations, TAJBank has recorded several milestones. Recently, the Bank was awarded Bank of the Year by Leadership Newspapers Group for its remarkable performance and efforts in driving financial inclusion to people at the grassroots.

TAJBank offers an array of products and service offerings which are widely available to customers. Some of these products include: Partnership (Mudarabah) Term Deposit, Lease (Ijarah) Finance, Partnership (Mudarabah) Savings/Current Accounts, Qard Savings and much more.

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Prada’s Profits Drop by $219 Million, Sales in China Up by 60%

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Prada’s Profits Drop by $219 Million, Sales in China Up by 60%

The year 2020 has been a truly challenging year for all kinds of businesses, including the most popular luxury brands. Due to store closures, Prada Group as well as luxury groups LVMH and Kering gained underwhelming financial results and tremendous losses in the first two quarters of 2020.

According to the research data analyzed and gathered by Comprar Acciones, Prada Group swung to a $219 million loss in Q1 and Q2 2020. In comparison, it was able to attain profits of around $190 million in the same period last year.

Prada’s Sales in China Up by 60% in Q2 2020

Due to the closure of 70% of its stores, Prada sales in the United States fell by 42%. Sales also dropped by 44% in the Middle East, 41% in Europe, while both the Asia Pacific and Japan experienced a 39% decline.

Other luxury brands such as LVMH and Kering also experienced drastic declines in their retail and wholesale sales. In the first half of 2020, Kering’s revenue collapsed by 29.6%. LVHM, the world’s biggest luxury group, also experienced a dramatic drop. From Q1 to Q3 2020, its total revenue stood at $36.9 billion, down by 21% year-over-year.

On the other hand, its sales in China have sharply recovered since the end of March 2020 when its stores have been reopened for the public.

By the end of Q2 2020, Prada registered a 60% sales growth in China. In July 2020, its sales were up by 66%. Additionally, a massive 44% of the company’s total global sales came from the Asia Pacific region.

Based on a study by American consultancy company Bain & Company, 37% of the total sales in luxury goods worldwide in 2019 came from Chinese shoppers. The bulk of these Chinese customers were travelling abroad at the time of their purchase.

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BUA, Sinoma CBMI of China to Sign Contract to Build 3 Additional Production Lines of 3mmtpa Each

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BUA to Sign Contract to Build Three Additional Production Lines of 3mmtpa Each

BUA, Nigeria’s second-largest cement manufacturing company, on Tuesday announced it is in the process of signing a contract to build three additional production lines of million metric tonnes per annum each this week.

The leading cement manufacturer disclosed this in a statement issued via the Nigerian Stock Exchange.

It said the contract will be between BUA and Sinoma CBMI of China, the company that will do the construction in Adamawa, Edo and Sokoto States.

The statement reads, “BUA Cement Plc hereby notifies the Nigerian Stock Exchange, its esteemed shareholders and the investing public that the Company will sign a contract for the building of additional three production lines of 3 million metric tonnes per annum each this week.

“The contract will be signed between the Company and Sinoma CBMI of China and the Production lines will be located at Adamawa, Edo and Sokoto States.”

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