New-age financial solutions powerhouse, Zedcrest Capital Limited on Thursday announced the launch of a wholly-owned subsidiary and new investment management firm aimed at digitally democratizing investment in Africa.
The new company, Zedcrest Investment Managers (“ZIMVEST”), will introduce digital private wealth and investment management, and help clients grow wealth by beating inflation and currency risks through multi-currency investments, via best-in-class paperless processes.
According to Saheed Adedayo Amzat, CFA, Founder & Group CEO of the Zedcrest Group, ZIMVEST’s differentiating factor will come from the renowned expertise of the group in the global financial markets. This is evidenced by the leadership position of its global markets business, Zedcap Partners which bagged the 2019 Best Brokerage Service Award of FMDQ OTC. The Group also has a wide distribution experience garnered from setting up another subsidiary, Zedvance, a top-three consumer lender in Nigeria.
“The launch of the Asset Management business ties in nicely with our plan to dominate every important vertical of Financial services: our four pillars of global markets, investment management, lending, and payments,” said Adebisi Sanda, Chairman of Zedcrest Group and former managing partner of Ernst & Young.
Sanda noted that despite some growth in the last decade, capital formation in Nigeria is still relatively low compared to its frontier/emerging market peers. “The total AUM of the contributory pension scheme, at 10 trillion is just under 10 percent of GDP compared to South Africa at 63 percent of GDP. The non-pension AUM at about 1.2 trillion is very low and represents a clear growth opportunity, one which we are going after,” he added.
Gbenga Adigun, the newly hired head of Asset Management who left his ‘posh’ job at one of the country’s top three asset management firms, believes ZIMVEST would leverage on the Group’s remarkable capacities and capabilities to launch the firm into the top five players in 5 years.
“I am delighted at the focus and vision I met on ground at Zedcrest Group and excited at the unique opportunity we have to create a tremendous impact. In the coming months, we will be unveiling new well-thought-through products to meet the investment needs of the public. We would have propositions for the salaried employees, entrepreneurs, HNIs, corporates, governments, and family offices”, Adigun said, who also praised the management of the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC), for the support in granting the operational license in record time.
With the current thrust of the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) to drive inclusive growth in the economy, returns have fallen tremendously as fund managers have been locked out of the ‘juicy’ Open Market Operation (OMO) market, in favor of foreign investors who bring the much needed foreign currency inflows. Most fund managers are expected to have negative real returns in 2020, a situation Zedcrest attributes to the unusual dependence on risk-free government securities investments.
A recent guideline from the central bank elongates the available CBN futures yield curve to 5 years from 12 months. The management of Zimvest believes this is to encourage foreign direct investment in critical sectors of the real economy and would significantly give Nigeria a growth lifeline.
“The Nigerian rising narrative is about to be rekindled and we believe this is the best time for us to be setting up. We have a clear opportunity to bring alternative investment products to the market and reduce the focus on government securities. We would be creating products for underlying investments in infrastructure and the agricultural value chain,” noted Stella Duru, another Zedcrest Director.
Zedcrest Investment Managers (ZIMVEST) is a subsidiary of Zedcrest Capital Limited and is duly licensed by the Securities & Exchange Commission (SEC) as a Funds/Portfolio Manager. The company is committed to growing wealth for its esteemed clients. Products are designed to offer inflation and currency protection, risk management and sustainable growth.