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First naira denominated infrastructure fund lists on NGX

NGX lauds Neimeth for enhancing operations, restoring investor confidence

The first local currency-denominated infrastructure investment trust fund in Nigeria and Sub-Saharan Africa, Nigeria Infrastructure Debt Fund (NIBF) has been listed on Nigerian Exchange Limited (NGX).

The listing, which took place on Thursday October 5 was commemorated with a Closing Gong Ceremony where the management of the Funds engaged market stakeholders with a Facts Behind the Listing presentation.

The Nigeria Infrastructure Debt Fund (NIDF) is a N200 billion public infrastructure investment fund managed by Chapel Hill Denham. The fund, backed by major institutional investors including the Nigeria Sovereign Investment Authority (NSIA), has provided long-term financing in naira for private infrastructure projects. Since inception, it has returned 155percent.

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NIDF’s 853,817,692 units were listed on the Main Board of NGX at N8.39 per share and will remit quarterly dividends to investors by paying out profits from investing in industries like power, transportation, healthcare and education.

Temi Popoola, Chief Executive Officer, NGX, said Chapel Hill Denham has been consistent with immense value addition to the Exchange and a key contributor to capital market growth in the last five years.

“One big innovation in the last three years was the MTN public offer. It included a complete end-to-end digital application process, which could not have been possible without Chapel Hill. We have been trying to showcase Nigeria as an investment destination, and Chapel Hill has been a strong supporter of that system,” Popoola said.

The CEO added that the capital market is increasingly becoming a vehicle for solving key governance problems, especially in the aspect of raising debt funding. He noted that the NIDF is an elegant solution that exist not only in Nigeria but in foreign markets. “The retail investor landscape will find this very attractive. It sells itself,” he explained.

Bolaji Balogun, Chief Executive Officer, Chapel Hill Denham said the listing of the fund is a great move for Nigeria’s economy. “This is the first time an infrastructure debt fund is listed on the Exchange. NIDF has been existing since 2017 and it has distributed successively for 24 quarters. We have increased the diversity of the areas we invest into – transportation, power, education, telecoms, social infrastructure.”

Balogun said the country needs to invest consistently to grow in that area of infrastructure. He also stressed the importance of infrastructure as an asset class.

Read also: Chapel Hill Denham to list N200bn infrastructure fund on NGX

On his part, Anshul Rai, CEO of NIDF gave credit to the fund’s work since its inception in 2017. “Through the good work of the team, we have been fortunate not to have Non-Perfomring Loans. We have had situations where the price of the funds have been very strong with very significant returns,” he added.

While echoing this sentiment, Phill Southwell, chairman NIDF, lauded the listing, adding that by listing on the exchange, NIDF hopes to crowd in retail investors. He also said that the funds investment strategy has ESG integrated into it.