Forex is not a ‘get rich quick’ scheme; it’s a process – Owolabi
MAYOWA OWOLABI is a financial market coach, entrepreneur, and an alumnus of the Lagos Business School. In this interview with IFEOMA OKEKE, the veteran trader and coach with over 10 years’ experience from Forex to Cryptocurrency, speaks on opportunities for potential investors.
How long have you been in the forex trading space and what has been the experience for you?
I became aware of the Forex Market while I was working as a database manager with one of the banks in Nigeria. I was amazed at how much the bank made on a daily basis and this got my attention because I discovered the financial market brought a lot of volume into the bank. So I said to myself ‘Mayowa, if the banks are successful in playing in the Forex market, then you need to learn and do research on this thing called the financial market’. In 2009 I started learning and trading. I remember in 2009/2010 I funded my first live account and started trading after learning from videos on YouTube.
My experience was that I didn’t have a mentor, I was only trading with the knowledge I got online, YouTube especially for the first 4-5years. It was hard for me because I’d make money and lose money, because I had no mentor or anyone to guide me through the process.
I always tell people that you need a mentor; you need to find those who are succeeding who can help make the journey simpler.
This is 2021; apparently I have been in this space for over 10years. Forex is not a ‘get rich quick’ scheme, it’s a process. You must spend some quality time with someone who will show you the things you should and shouldn’t do.
What inspired you to invest in the crypto space at a time when many people in Nigeria were sceptical about the activities therein?
The Forex market, crypto market and stock market are all instruments in the financial market. One advantage I had is I learnt how the institutions approach the market, hence if I want to trade any instrument (Cryptocurrrency, forex etc), it’s the same way. For me, playing in the crypto space is important for everyone who is less than 60yrs old because in the next 5-30years cryptocurrency and Blockchain will take over almost everything in the finance space. You need to understand that every 100 years, money changes its form.
When people say they are sceptical about cryptocurrency, it’s because they haven’t studied the history of money.
For me, cryptocurrency is the future. I feel everyone should be playing in it, but does that mean they must trade every asset or coin? No! You need to understand that there are some things that make the cryptocurrency work. For example, sometime in March 2020, I told everyone in our community and those who listen to my free trainings on YouTube and Facebook, to go buy BTC at about $4000. How did I know it was going to get to that level? It’s simply because I’m an institutional trader, and I understand where the institutions put their money, and from $4000 it shot up to about $65,000. That’s over 1000% return on investment. For me, it’s the future.
For instance; BTC five years ago was about $558.72, Ethereum was about $12.74, Litecoin was $4.48 and many others I can’t mention now. You can check the price now and do your maths. I don’t want my children to ask me questions, ‘Daddy, were you not aware of Bitcoin, Etherum and others’?
As a veteran trader and coach with over 10 years’ experience playing in the financial market, what would you say are the major challenges and opportunities in crypto trading?
One of the major challenges is that a lot of people need to understand that it’s not a get rich quick scheme. People approach the financial market with the goal of achieving the result of two years in two days. Yes! It’s true that there’s money here but you must be patient with your crypto portfolio. You must understand that the asset isn’t going anywhere. A lot of people do not have the right knowledge to hold their assets for a long time
Another challenge is lack of the right knowledge. You must understand what you’re investing in, because investing in the crypto space is like buying the stock of a project online, hence you must understand the project you’re investing in. So inasmuch as the company doesn’t liquidate you investment is safe
A lot of people approach the crypto space with a trader’s mind-set instead of the mind-set of an investor. The Crypto Market is a very volatile market.
Another challenge is security. A lot of people are worried as to how to secure their assets over a long term. The solution is you can use a cold wallet to store and keep your coin safe, and there are several other ways you can secure it.
Another challenge is regulations. A lot of people become scared when they hear of regulations but they do not understand that you need to give it time. There are several other challenges, however, every challenge is because you’re not aware of the solution.
There are several opportunities in the cryptocurrency space. You can trade it, you can buy at $1 and sell at $2. You can do what I call crypto-banking. Can you start saving or investing in cryptocurrency for the future? Like you have land assets, you need to have cryptocurrency assets. You can stake it; here your coins work for you while you’re sleeping. You’re earning while investing. Another is the liquidity pool. There’s also the cryptocurrency airdrop
There are several ways to maximize the crypto space. I have a paid training/tutorial on these which I would give for free because it’s my birth month. Just send me an email and you’ll get it for free.
What has been the effect of the federal government ban on cryptocurrency activities in Nigeria?
Placing a ban on Cryptocurrency activities is not the way forward. I believe that when it comes to Cryptocurrency, education is needed. Even the federal government needs education on how they can leverage the Blockchain technology to better the systems of governance like other nations are doing today.
Examples: Australia is set to use it for taxation; UAE is using it for data and documentation of citizens; Switzerland is known for its crypt valley with a lot of innovations created from blockchain and many more.
The effect of the ban in Nigeria has both an advantage and a disadvantage. The disadvantage is that the ban affected the direct exchange of Cryptocurrency with the exchanges. Companies like Luno who only engage in direct exchange are the ones majorly affected.
The advantage is that the ban made Cryptocurrency go viral. But you must understand that the ban was placed on the exchangers, and not the cryptocurrency (Bitcoin, Ethereum, e.t.c), it is only the activities that were limited.
There’s what’s called Peer-to-Peer, which means you can purchase or exchange your crypto from one person to another. You can’t ban Cryptocurrency.
By implication a lot of these businesses lost an arm of their business which resulted in loss of jobs for those in that area.
Economically, it has hindered a lot of new technologies coming up with solutions that could create jobs for the youth and better the economy of the nation. But the truth remains that you can still trade; buy and sell Cryptocurrency in Nigeria.
What are some of the success stories you have experienced operating in the Cryptocurrency space?
I have a lot of amazing stories in the crypto space. I have been able to do a lot for myself and people who I have trained
Just this year, not to mention the previous years, I bought into some assets with amazing projects; one is called Axle (AXS) which is a game project, we bought it at $1.43 and the price has gone up to about $27, it gave us over 2000 percent in just about less than six months amongst many others.
I have also been able to empower a lot of people with proper education; we have quite amazing students who have learned from us and are able to make a lot of money from the crypto space. We have quite a number of assets and we are waiting on to deliver more.
The beauty of the crypto space is that there’s no competition; once you understand the project and the potential or possibilities the project has, then you’re good to go. Invest and give it time. A lot of people do not want to give it time.
We hear the knowledge of Cryptocurrency is growing globally. Could you tell if this is the same for Nigeria?
This I can tell you over and over again, Cryptocurrency is growing both globally and here in Nigeria. People are getting to know the opportunities in the Crypto-space, through P2P, Staking, trading, e.t.c. People are gaining exposure on a daily basis. At the last Bitcoin conference, one of the merchants confirmed the volume they got from Nigerians.
Nigerians still feel the risks of investing in Cryptocurrency are high and the regulatory body is also not encouraging people to invest in this space, especially with the recent ban. How can you address this perception?
Naturally if you’re not doing a business that doesn’t have a risk, then you’re not going to make money. But the truth is, it is education that can reduce the risk in Cryptocurrency. Gain knowledge! Get the right knowledge; know when to get in and what position to get in. You need the right information. The risk of not taking risks is even riskier. Investing in Cryptocurrency is an asset, it is just about evolution. You only need to understand how it works. Create time to learn and get exposed to what it takes to be successful in the Crypto-space.
For instance, I was educating those in our Crypto community. I said to them we want to grow for the next 5 years. Can you save a substantial amount of your savings in Cryptocurrency every month for the next 5-10 years.
We’ve seen this work over and over again. If we go back to when bitcoin came into existence about 10 years ago, we see that it has given us about 227,000 percent returns on investment.