News & Events


Jul 2014

Nigeria moves to 2nd position on sovereign wealth ratings

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Nigeria has moved to the second position on the rating of sovereign wealth funds in the world.

This follows the improved rating of the Nigeria Sovereign Investment Authority (NSIA) as a sovereign wealth fund by the Linaburg-Maduell transparency index administered by the Sovereign Wealth Institute.

In the official statement announcing the second quarter 2014 ratings, the Institute singled out the NSIA for special mention stating that the Nigerian Sovereign Investment Authority (NSIA) has been upgraded to nine points out of a possible 10 from a score of 4 in the previous rankings.

This rating translates into a leap from a position of joint 33rd to joint 2nd; the only African sovereign wealth fund so ranked.  With the latest rankings, NSIA is in credible company alongside sovereign wealth funds from the USA, France, South Korea, Brazil and Malaysia.

Okonjo Iweala, Nigeria's Minister of Finance and Coordinating Minister for the Economy

Okonjo Iweala, Nigeria’s Minister of Finance and Coordinating Minister for the Economy

More significantly, the improved transparency ranking validates NSIA’s commitment and adherence to the highest prescriptions of the Santiago Principles with respect to corporate governance, investment strategy, disclosures and SWF best practices.

The NSIA believes that the capacity to deliver on its statutory mandate, for the benefits of all Nigerians, depends on these values hence the unwavering commitment to best practice standards in all policies, procedures and systems.

The Linaburg-Maduell Transparency Index was developed at the Sovereign Wealth Fund Institute by Carl Linaburg and Michael Maduell and is a method of rating transparency in respect to sovereign wealth funds.

In arriving at the rankings, the index amongst others considers the following principles -  Fund provides history including reason for creation, origins of wealth, and government ownership structure, Fund provides up-to-date independently audited annual reports, Fund provides ownership percentage of company holdings, Fund provides total portfolio market value, returns, and management compensation, Fund provides guidelines in reference to ethical standards, investment policies, and enforcer of guidelines, Fund provides clear strategies and objectives if applicable, the Fund clearly identifies subsidiaries.


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Jul 2014

Unilever Boss lures investors to opportunities in Nigerian market

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Investors from all over the world have been advised to take advantage of the numerous opportunities available in the country and its huge potential to establish thriving business ventures in Nigeria.

The President, Unilever for Africa, Russia and Middle East, Mr. Alan Jope, gave the advice at the opening of the two-day Unilever investment forum tagged: ‘Partner to Win Africa Conference’ in Lagos on Thursday.

He said Unilever Africa brought the conference to Nigeria because of the huge potential of the country, the high return on investment, abundance of natural and human resources and the fact that Nigeria’s economy was now the biggest on the continent.

Similarly, the governments of Lagos, Ogun and Kogi states promised serious investors attractive enabling environments and incentives for them to set up businesses in the states.

For instance, Governor Babatunde Fashola of Lagos, who was represented by his Commissioner for Commerce, Mrs. Olusola Oworu, said his administration was ready to assist genuine investors and had removed impediments to easy conduct of business.

He added that the government had put in place a Public-Private Partnership department in his office to deal with the issue of investors who were willing to partner with the government and that the state was also ready to render any assistance to make investment easy.

“In the last seven years, we have embrace the PPP in our industrialisation drive and this has considerably paid off. We have improved the procedure of acquiring land in the state as issuance of Certificates of Occupancy has been fast-tracked to assist the investment drive,” Fashola said.

His Ogun State counterpart, Ibikunle Amosun, while calling on investors to take advantage of the vast arable land available in the state, said only about 0.5 per cent had so far been utilised, adding that investors could take advantage of this by bringing their ventures to the state.

He said, “We have 12,000 hectares of virgin land and we will be willing to assist any investor who is ready to do business in the state in whatever capacity we can. We have the largest concentration of industries in the country and with a population of about seven million people, we have available manpower for any investment and our GDP is among the fastest growing in the country.

“Lagos and others states are taking advantage of our land. Currently, Lagos is growing rice in our state and other states too are doing so. Unilever should, aside having 80 per cent of their investments in the state, also come to the state to have farms to grow their raw materials. We are not also relenting, as the state, with our efforts, can also feed your company with raw materials in the nearest future.”


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Jul 2014

Experts optimistic about Nigeria’s business growth despite security challenges – KPMG Survey

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Chief Financial Officers, CFOs  in Nigeria have expressed  optimism about the prospects of business growth despite challenges insecurity, infrastructure, and multiple taxations.

This was revealed by a survey conducted by KPMG involving over 40 CFOs drawn from different companies across various sectors, including finance, telecoms, oil and gas, manufacturing, etc.

Addressing news men at the pre-launch press conference for the survey report in Lagos, KPMG’s Partner and Head of Audit Services, Tola Adeyemi said the firm decided to go out and survey Chief Financial Officers, CFOs because of the crucial role they play in the lives of businesses, adding that is important to get their pulse and real thoughts on matters that affect them.

He said the survey focused  three broad areas which are:  perception on economic growth prospect for Nigeria in 2014, the role of internal audit in businesses and how the role of CFOs have evolved in Nigeria, given the way in which the economy and the complexity of business have also evolved.

On the key findings in the survey, Adeyemi said the CFOs were cautiously optimistic in terms of economic outlook, adding that besides insecurity, they expressed concerns with power, taxation, infrastructure and regulation.

Explaining the findings of the survey, he said: “The key message regarding the outlook is that CFOs in Nigeria are cautiously optimistic about the prospects for their businesses in 2014.

There are two elements to that. The first element is the optimism. We asked them the question that says, how do you see the growth in revenues, growth in their gross margins and growth in cash flows evolving for your business in 2014?


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