NGX deepens strategy to boost millennial participation in N30tr stock market
•Appoints advisory panel on digital technology products
Efforts by the Nigerian Exchange Limited (NGX) to develop a focused strategy that would woo financial technology (Fintech) firms and millennials to the nation’s stock market may have yielded some progress with the appointment of an advisory panel on digital technology products.
The panel is expected to provide a forum for the NGX to interact with the capital market community and the fintech ecosystem to enhance NGX’s digital product offerings.
Already, the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) had in December 2022, approved the rules for listing on the NGX technology board to encourage investments in indigenous technologically inclined companies and others across Africa and provide greater visibility to these companies.
According to the NGX, responsibilities of the panel include but not limited to providing insights into product innovation and proposing ways to increase technology listings on NGX; recommending ways to boost data and digital market liquidity; providing thought leadership by developing whitepapers, creating frameworks and making recommendations; and a host of advisory matters like market trends, risks and sentiments.
There has been a call for the NGX to attract Fintechs to the stock market and leverage their fund-raising capability to boost liquidity. Despite years of stability of the NGX, many Nigerian youths have continued to diversify and hedge their investment portfolios through virtual currencies, online bets and international stocks with no interest in short term instruments.
Findings showed that Nigerian fintechs are approaching investors and getting funded, especially from venture capitalists in countries such as the United States, United Kingdom, Switzerland and Belgium. From these offshore destinations, these fintechs have raised over $876.5 million in the last six years.
From 2014 to 2020, for instance, fintechs raised about $600 million in funding, attracting 25 per cent ($122 million) of the $491.6 million raised by African tech startups in 2019 alone – second only to Kenya, which attracted $149 million.
The exchange disclosed that the creation of the committee is part of a continuous process to further scale its capacities in the technology ecosystem.
Chief Digital Officer, NGX. Dr Olufemi Oyenuga said, “Technology and innovation are the driving forces of progress, and at NGX, we are committed to leveraging both to transform the Exchange into a leading force of product development in the capital market.
He stated that with the establishment of the committee, the exchange was poised to explore new frontiers, pool groundbreaking ideas and unlock exciting opportunities for the future through creativity, innovation and sustainability.”
Members of the panel include Tope Kola-Oyeneyin (McKinsey); Iyin Aboyeji (Future Africa); Kola Aina (Ventures Platform); Idris Saliu (Ceviant).
Others are Fope Adelowo (Helios Group); Richmond Bassey (Bamboo); Tayo Oviosu (Paga); Wale Ayeni (International Finance Corporation); Ahmad Zuaiter (Jadara Capital Partners LLC) and Adedeji Olowe (LendsQr).