Nigeria remains potential investment destination despite macroeconomic challenges facing the Africa’s most populous black nation, experts have said.
Dave Uduanu, managing director/CEO, Sigma Pensions, joined by other cooperate executives and experts made the remark at the PFAs business roundtable with the theme ‘Preserving Value in Turbulent Times” held recently.
Panellist at the roundtable where the Ugo Obi-Chukwu, chief marketing officer Ikeja Electric; Femi Ogunjimi, co-founder/ managing director, CardinalStone Capital Advisers; Tosin Ojo, vice president Sahel Group; Folaseto Akin-Olugbade, principal at Actis; and Funke Okubadejo, director, Real Estate, Actis.
Speaking on the investment climate in Nigeria, Uduanu said: “Nigeria could be at an inflection point and for us to come out stronger we have to believe in our market, especially with unifying exchange rates.”
He stated that there are huge potentials yet untapped in organising the informal sectors, technology as well using funding assets.
He added: “ In terms of investments, there is a renewed focus on every alternative, whether it is real estate, or private equity. However, I would like to highlight on asset financing. Today, everybody, every school, every hospital, owns their real estate. You don’t need to own your real estate especially as the PFAs have a lot of liquidity and this liquidity can be used to finance assets.”
On his part, Ogunjimi said: “I think Nigeria is definitely investable. I have a bit of a contrarian view when it comes to investments. In addition, I think is usually in situations of turmoil that you create generational wealth because if you have a perfect environment, it’s hard to get any kind of investment, particularly when all the problems have been solved. So the question is, how do you look at the problems we have as opportunities? I do agree that those problems create a lot of challenges, especially for us as institutional investors but for people as individual investors, I think there are a lot of opportunities.”
He added: “What we see is that, it’s still going to be a good market and there are several reasons why. Number one is the number of start-ups that are coming up and still continues to increase. There are so many more people now that are willing to write $20,000 cheques $50,000 cheques on their $100,000 c cheques.”
“Secondly, there is a lot of dry powder, a lot of money both institutional and otherwise, that is actually looking for where to invest globally. And so, as long as you have businesses that have good promoters that are willing and have the maturity to position themselves well, and as long as people are solving real-life problems, as long as entities are solving real-life problems, you’re going to continue to see interest.”
On her part, Akin-Olugbade on investing in Nigeria noted that investments should be targeted towards investing in companies and products that offer solutions to the problems we have in Nigeria.
She said; “Nigeria is totally investable; I think fundamentally investors should invest in businesses that are addressing the basic necessities of life.”
While Okubadejo harped on careful investments and urged participants to hold value in real estate and seek for investments that offer inflation protection.