By Adedapo Adesanya
The foreign exchange market on Wednesday, March 11 witnessed further depreciation of the Naira against the US Dollar and other major currencies amid heightened fears of devaluation and global economic crisis.
At the Investors and Exporters (I&E) segment, the local currency lost 0.43 percent or N1.58 against the greenback to trade at N368.33/$1 compared with the previously traded rate of N366.75/$1.
Business Post gathered that the decline occurred despite the ease in the demand for forex at the market window yesterday. The value of transactions at the investors’ segment reduced by 79 percent or $392.09 million to $106.04 million from $498.13 million exchanged at the previous session.
At Bureaux De Change (BDCs) segment in Lagos, the Naira also depreciated against the Dollar by N6.50 to close at N365/$1 in contrast to N358.50/$1 traded at the previous session. The domestic currency also depreciated by N12 against the British pound to N485/£1 from N473/£1 and lost N9 against the Euro to trade at N412 compared with N403/€1.
In the capital city of Abuja, the local currency lost N9 against the greenback to trade at N368/$1 after it closed at N359/$1 at the previous session. The Nigerian currency fell by N11 against the pound to N482/£1 from N471/£1 and declined by a whopping N45 against the Euro to N414.50/£1 from N369/€1.
At the Kano BDC market, according to data obtained by Business Post from Association of Bureau De Change Operators of Nigeria (ABCON), the Naira depreciated by N5.50 to N365/$1 from N359.50/$1 on Tuesday. It lost N15 against the Euro to sell at N414/€1 compared with the previous value of N399/€1 and then closed flat against the British currency at N470/£1.
In Port Harcourt, the Naira was down by N7 to N365/$1 from N358/$1 and then lost N16 against the Euro to N413/€1 from N397/€1. It depreciated by N5 against the Pound to close at N480/£1 from N475/£1.
At the black market, the Naira fell by N12 against the United States currency to N375/$1 from N363/$1 and then declined by N10 on the Pound to quote at N485/£1 against the previous rate of N475/£1 before going down by N10 against the Euro to N413/€1 from N403/€1.
However, the domestic currency maintained its stability against the Dollar at the interbank window as the official Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) exchange rate remained at N306.95/$1.
Experts Foresees NGX Technology Board Deepening Capital Market
By Aduragbemi Omiyale
Experts in the Nigerian financial markets have expressed optimism about the proposed NGX Technology Board’s positive impact on the capital market and the economy.
The Nigerian Exchange (NGX) Limited plans to establish this platform to attract the listing of technology companies, giving them an avenue to raise funds to expand their operations.
On Thursday, October 6, 2022, the exchange held a seminar themed Enabling the Next Wave of Growth for Technology Companies in Africa. It was held to allow stakeholders to discuss ways to make things better for players in the sector.
Speakers at the event included the Senior Special Assistant to the President on Digital Transformation, Mr Oswald Osaretin Guobadia; Kendall Ananyi, Chief Executive Officer, Tizeti; Vice President, Cardinalstone, Mrs Onyebuchim Obiyemi; CEO, Opay, Mr Olu Akanmu; Managing Director, Nigerian Capital Market Institute, Timi Agama; Head, Financial Markets Support and Development Division, Financial Markets Department, CBN, Mr Demenongu J. Yanfa; and President, Pension Funds Operators Association of Nigeria (PenOp), Oguche Agudah.
Others were the CEO, Central Securities and Clearing System (CSCS) Plc, Jalo Waziri; Partner, Fund the Gap Alliance, Segun Cole; Associate Dean, Lagos Business School, LBS, Prof. Olayinka David-West; Representative of London Stock Exchange and Director, Tech Sector Specialist, Shah Neil; Co-Founder/COO, One Watt Solar Director, Jubril Adeojo; CEO Future Africa, Iyinoluwa Aboyeji and Chief Growth officer, Halo Invest, Nnenna Onyewuchi.
In his remarks, the Chairman of NGX, Mr Abubakar Mahmoud, represented by NGX board member, Mrs Angela Adebayo, said that Nigeria is home to several unicorns like Flutterwave, Andela, Jumia, Opay which have valuations surpassing $1 billion.
“As a sustainable exchange championing Africa’s growth, NGX is positioned to support the growth of the next wave of technology companies.
“It is stimulating the capital market, providing a tailored platform for tech companies in Nigeria and wider Africa to access growth capital whilst providing exit opportunities for all investors.
“The next wave of growth for home-bred technology companies needs to be anchored on sustainability, agility, collaboration and digital innovation, and these are elements that NGX represents,” he said.
Director-General of the Securities Exchange Commission (SEC), Mr Lamido Yuguda, represented by Dayo Obisan, Executive Commissioner, Operations, SEC, while delivering his goodwill message, noted that with the several developments recorded in the technology space, Africa remains a continent with the highest potential when it comes to tech and innovations and as such, its ability to determine its future digitally must be accelerated by strengthening its technological capabilities.
According to him, “Africa has the potential to grow into a technological giant with the right enablement, and SEC will support laudable initiatives aimed at improving on the capacity of our market to develop a robust ecosystem for the Nigerian capital market.”
Also, the CEO of NGX, Mr Temi Popoola, while speaking on the proposed NGX Technology Board, said, “The exchange, in conjunction with other major stakeholders, including SEC, CBN, CSCS and PenOp, are working tirelessly to launch and on-board a new asset class.
“The specialised technology board aims to encourage the listing of companies in the technology space, provide increased transparency, and visibility on foreign investment activities in tech companies and local tech startups.”
Giving the keynote address, the Deputy Governor, Financial Systems Stability Directorate, CBN, Mrs Aisha Ahmad, noted that tech had grown from an enabler of business to a fully-fledged sector as some of the largest companies in the world like Meta and Google.
“Africa is a $2.7 trillion economy, and for this growth to translate into broader economic impacts, we need more local investor participation. I’m particularly excited about NGX’s Technology Board plan, which will help grow the listings of Nigerian and African tech companies. It will aid price discovery of tech industry valuations and channel capital to tech and other sectors,” she said.
Panellists at the first panel titled The Path to Tech Listings – Leveraging Capital Market for Exponential Growth agreed that the proposed launch of NGX Technology Board is timely as it addresses challenges startups face with funding and capital formation during their developmental stage.
Additionally, they noted that having major stakeholders like NGX, SEC and CBN champion the Board would attract foreign investor participation, especially in terms of liquidity.
The second panel, themed Beyond Tech – Regulation as an Enabler for Technology Board Listings and Investor Protection, highlighted policies and the right standards as key factors in creating an enabling environment for tech listings and investor protection.
The panellists noted that regulators should be concerned about the companies listed, the governance structure, evaluations, returns and their positive impact on Nigeria’s economy, such as introducing new founders to the market and creating employment for Nigerians.
Helicarrier Acquires Stake in Accrue to Drive Crypto, Stock Investment
By Adedapo Adesanya
Helicarrier, the owning company of Buycoins and Sendcash, has announced that it has completed the signing of definitive agreements to acquire a significant equity interest in Accrue.
As part of this agreement, Buycoins Basic will be transitioning into Accrue effective immediately.
This means Buycoins Basic will now be onboarded on Accrue and position the company for more growth as it pursues cryptocurrency acceptance and adoption in Africa while helping users to grow their wealth with low-risk investment options.
Mr Timi Ajiboye, CEO of Helicarrier, said, “Embarking on this partnership underscores our dedication to democratising wealth building on the continent. Accrue has built the perfect wealth-building tool for the internet-powered African, and we’re excited to bring that experience to 100k+ Buycoins users.”
In a statement sent to customers and seen by Business Post, Helicarrier and Accrue have a long history together as the company was the first investor in Accrue, which ex-Helicarrier teammates founded.
“The mission to help Africans build wealth by leveraging transformational digital currency technology is a shared driving force for both companies,” the statement read.
On his part, Mr Clinton Mbah, co-founder of Accrue, noted that, “Everything you love about Helicarrier culture and its products — ease of use, timely customer support, fantastic product sense, execution speed, technical chops, and tenacity in the face of adversity, are tenets we brought over to Accrue. We’re committed to these tenets forever.”
Accrue is a long-term wealth-building app built for beginners to invest. Users can save in Dollars (stablecoins), earn up to 6 per cent annual interest, and auto-invest in top-performing stocks and cryptocurrencies with minimal risk and likelier profit.
Accrue is available for users across Ghana and Nigeria, with support for more African countries coming soon.
Helicarrier, founded in 2017, has several interests in the African fintech space, and its products include Buycoins Pro, the order book for advanced crypto traders, Sendcash which lets users send money to and from Africa easily powered by crypto for the best exchange rates and fastest delivery times.
Helicarrier also owns significant equity in other pioneering products like Abacus.
Inflation in Nigeria Will Remain High Through 2023—S&P
By Aduragbemi Omiyale
A rating company, S&P Global Ratings, has projected that inflation in Nigeria will remain high through 2023 as a result of rising energy prices and tensions in the food-producing regions of the country, majorly the northern part.
The National Bureau of Statistics (NBS) last month said inflation increased by 20.52 per cent in August 2022, forcing the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) to increase the Monetary Policy Rate (MPR) by 1.50 per cent to 15.5 per cent from 14.0 per cent.
For S&P, the central bank may have to continue to hike the rates because inflation will continue to face north till next year unless the government takes action to ease the energy crisis and insecurity in the country.
“Rising production costs for the corporate sector, due to high energy prices, and tensions in the food-producing middle belt, will likely keep inflation in double digits through 2023,” the agency said in a statement made available to Business Post.
In the disclosure, the firm warned that Nigerian banks could see a decline in their earnings. It further said the lenders could suffer weaker lending growth and asset quality due to the rate hike by the apex bank.
S&P further disclosed that the increase in the cash reserve ratio to 33.5 per cent from 27.5 per cent last month by the CBN could likely lead to a freeze in lending in the short term and squeeze net interest margins, especially if raised higher.
It was also stated that the harsh macroeconomic situation in Nigeria would deplete banks’ earnings as non-performing loans (NPLs) increase and net interest margins decline.
“We expect the banking sector’s NPL ratio will deteriorate to 5.5 per cent on average in 2022 after improving to 5 per cent at year-end 2021, while the return on equity moderates to 13 per cent from 14 per cent,” the agency said.
Latest News on Business Post
- NGX Group Reorganises Board, Picks Umaru Kwairanga as Chairman October 6, 2022
- Experts Foresees NGX Technology Board Deepening Capital Market October 6, 2022
- Nigeria Re-elected to ITU Council Seat Till 2026 October 6, 2022
- Helicarrier Acquires Stake in Accrue to Drive Crypto, Stock Investment October 6, 2022
- NMDPRA Faults Lokoja Flood for Fuel Scarcity, Queues in Abuja October 6, 2022
- Inflation in Nigeria Will Remain High Through 2023—S&P October 6, 2022
- Mottainai Releases Numbers for Waste Evacuation in Oyo October 6, 2022
- Former Mastercard Director Emmanuel Efenure Moves to Flutterwave October 6, 2022
- Effective Fiscal, Monetary Policies Will Revamp Nigerian Economy—Standard Chartered Bank October 6, 2022
- How to Download 1xBet App in Nigeria? October 6, 2022