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Are these 4 of the worst Ponzi schemes in Nigerian history?

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If there is a sure means of getting the attention of Nigerians, it is any money doubling scheme. Nigerians have shown time and again that they have a high appetite for high-risk, high-returns investment, regardless of the lack of a business model inherent in most of these schemes. Coupled with the continent-high population and sub-optimal economic conditions, most of the founders of Ponzi schemes introduce them to Nigeria as quickly as possible. As a result, over time, Nigerians have lost significant sums to them. These 4 Ponzis are some of the most popular.

Pennywise

Back in 2007, this was the rave of the town especially in South-West Nigeria. With investment as low as N5000 back then, potential investors were promised rewards as high as 100% of their investment within two weeks of investment. The scheme received popular following despite the warnings from the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) and the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN). According to a source, Nigerians lost about N1.93 billion to Pennywise alone between 2006 and 2008. The present value of that amount becomes mind-boggling if the forex issues that have happened since then are taken into account.

Nospectco Oil and Gas

Another wonder bank, this time disguising as an oil and gas investment, Nospectco became popular in 2005. Several Nigerians saw it as an opportunity to reap a big share from the country’s natural resources. However, it all proved to be a sham but the CBN and the SEC were quick to drag the founders to court. At its peak, Nospectco Oil and Gas was responsible for about N49 billion in lost funds, according to the CBN. Most of these claims were never settled.

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Ultimate Cycler

A new generation Ponzi, Ultimate cycler was one of the most popular Ponzi schemes for 2016. It was set up by a network marketer, who went by the name Peter Wolfing. The scheme required members to pay N12,500 after which they would have another 4 new membes placed under them to provide N37,500 as reward. Members were encouraged to bring other people into the scheme to ensure its continuity. As with all things of such nature, the scheme has practically packed up. Data on the amount lost to Ultimate Cycler is scanty as its competitor, MMM, got all the attention.

MMM

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Speaking of MMM, Mavrodi Mondial Movement, Ponzis in Nigeria does not get bigger. If you were not engaged in the scheme in 2016, you were not considered a Nigerian. The scheme had no restrictions on the amount to be invested and sourcing additional people was not compulsory to receive a 30% reward. The scheme became so popular that banking on Tuesdays and Thursdays became a headache for Nigerians not involved in the scheme. As usual, Nigerians ignored several warnings from the CBN and the SEC. MMM’a crash is now an open secret. The CBN gave an estimated loss of N12 billion to Ponzis in 2016. You can be sure that MMM is responsible for more than half of that sum.

Chacha Wabara-Ogbobine is a Legal practitioner with over 9years post call experience. A research Consultant, professional writer and a blogger at heart,owner of four thriving websites with well over 10years of experience. Totally in love with keeping fit and coaching weight loss enthusiasts. I love my quiet time, being with my kids, watching TV series for hours on end.

6 Comments

6 Comments

  1. Duzie (@Duzie_)

    July 26, 2017 at 7:49 pm

    HAHAHA.

    We all fell for these Ponzi schemes didn’t we? The sad part was that many people invested their main funds, eventhough, MMM warned people not to.

    • Fifi

      July 27, 2017 at 11:55 am

      We all didn’t fall. When nairametrics did an article on mmm warning people about the dangers, members responded with very vile words. Those who wanted to fall for it fell.

  2. Anonymous

    July 27, 2017 at 8:49 am

    Do ur research well next time… MMM is still paying n its not a ponzi scheme.

  3. Anonymous

    July 27, 2017 at 10:28 pm

    Take corrections and DYOR(Do Your Own Research) properly. MMM has not and will not crash. It is still paying very well. And we like it as its on a low key for now.

    • Anonymous

      July 5, 2020 at 5:17 am

      Seriously you need to woke up

  4. Badisa

    May 19, 2018 at 11:57 am

    Even though people down here in South Africa have fallen victim to MMM, many still join such schemes that promise unrealistic ROI’s. The latest craze seem to be “Stokfels”, which promise 100% in 24 hours. I’m not sure why our authorities haven’t clamped down on these already.

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Cryptocurrency

#EndSARS Nigerian Rights group switch to Crypto

A Nigerian rights group strongly supporting the #EndSARS campaign has highlighted why it is accepting donations in Bitcoin.

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Nigerian millennials in the past few weeks have taken to the streets in unprecedented numbers, kicking against the abuse done by a significant number of law enforcement officers, most specifically, the disbanded Special Anti-robbery Squad (SARS).

As the protest rages on, various rights groups have set up funds to provide participants, support, while they glamour for the long-overdue reforms.

Feminist Coalition, recently gave reasons why it’s now switching to crypto. The group said;

“We’re moving to only accepting donations in Bitcoin using BTC Pay. BTC Pay is a free, secure, decentralized, and censorship-resistant platform, which makes it our best option, given the past few days #EndPoliceBrutalityinNigeria. Please donate here: https://donatebtc.feministcoalition2020.com”

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The fast-rising Nigerian rights group provides logistics, aid to Nigerians pressing for Police reforms via street protests disclosed they raised about 8 bitcoins valued at over $88,0000 and other cash donations.

Why this matters

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The donations are used in providing medical and legal bills for some Nigerians arrested in recent days, and most importantly to hire private security guards in protecting them against armed gangs, who of late have tried to discredit the theme of the peaceful protests.

Another critical macro making many Nigerian millennials use crypto amid protest for reforms is basically because the #EndSARS protests in principle is decentralized. There is no known centralized authority coordinating the protest, and not forgetting, the much advantage cryptos have over fiat currencies are that they are decentralized finance assets, meaning, funds can’t be controlled, blocked or disengaged by any central authority.

Also, crypto donations are very secure, and privacy concerns kept at a minimal level, on the basis you don’t disclose your personal details when making such transfers.

Backstory

Nairametrics had earlier given vital insights on how for years, young Nigerians, mostly via social media, have called for the notorious Police unit to be disbanded and rogue elements in the force brought to justice. Despite repeated promises by the government, they have failed to heed to the demands, triggering a new wave of protests that have now spread across the country.

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Stock Market

#EndSARS protests dampen market liquidity at Nigerian Stock Market

INTBREW led 19 Gainers as against 18 Losers topped by ETERNA at the end of today’s session.

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Nigerian bourse started its first trading session, unsurprisingly ended on a neutral note.

The All Share Index remained the same as the last trading session, closing at 28,658.31 basis points as against +1.11% appreciation recorded on Friday. Its Year-to-Date (YTD) returns currently stands at +6.77%.

  • That said, Nigerian bourse trading turnover plunged by -41.26% as against the +42.93% uptick recorded on Friday. ZENITHBANK, UBA, and FBNH were the most active to boost market turnover.
  • CHAMS led the list of active stocks that recorded an impressive volume spike at the end of today’s session.
  • Market breadth closed positive as INTBREW led 19 Gainers as against 18 Losers topped by ETERNA at the end of today’s session – an unimproved performance when compared with the previous outlook.

Top gainers

  1. INTBREW up 9.94% to close at N5.86
  2. CONOIL up 9.72% to close at N15.8
  3. ARDOVA up 5.83% to close at N12.7
  4. GUINNESS up 4.75% to close at N17.65
  5. GUARANTY up 1.48% to close at N30.8

Top losers

  1. ETERNA down 8.98% to close at N4.46
  2. MAYBAKER down 7.69% to close at N3
  3. CADBURY down 3.11% to close at N7.8
  4. ZENITHBANK down 2.55% to close at N21
  5. WAPCO down 1.86% to close at N18.5

Outlook

Nigerian bourse ended neutral amid rising crude oil prices at the first trading session for the week.

  • Ongoing protests among a significant number of Nigerian youths in urban areas weighed on Monday’s trading activity, as economic activities were disrupted at Nigeria’s economic hub, thereby leading to a plunge in trading activities.
  • Furthermore, gains recorded by Conoil, GTbank got neutralized, as selling pressure observed in  Eterna, Cadbury, and Zenith bank intensified.
  • Nairametrics envisage cautious buying as many Nigerian millennials still remain on the street protesting for other reforms, and the rising caseloads of COVID-19 in Nigerian’s international markets would most likely affect its major export earnings in the mid-term.

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Commodities

Nigeria’s $1.5 billion steel plant set to produce 1 million MT of steel annually

Nigeria nears steel independence as $1.5 billion steel plant in Kaduna is set to produce 1 million MT of steel annually.

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Nigeria's $1.5 billion steel plant set to produce 1 million MT, FG earmarks over N190 billion for road construction in the 6 geo-political zones by 2021, FG approves $3.1 billion for automation of Customs, targets $176 billion revenue, Nigeria close to securing $3 billion World Bank facility, Budget deficit, ECOWAS economy grows by 3.1%, expected to hit 3.3% by end of 2019 , Dangote Refinery would help save $10 billion in forex - FG,, FG monitoring ‘Eco’ adoption by ECOWAS members amidst threat to Naira, FG suspends plan to obtain $22.7 billion loan

The Federal government of Nigeria has disclosed that it is expecting an annual output of one million metric tonnes of steel from its $1.5 billion steel plant in Kaduna.

This was disclosed by the Minister of Finance, Budget and National Planning, Mrs Zainab Shamsuna Ahmed while inspecting the steel plant facility at the African Natural Resouces and Mines Limited in Kaduna.

READ: Why Ajaokuta Cannot Make Steel

READ: CBN restricts forex for milk import to Nestle, Chi, Friesland, 3 others

According to The Punch, Mrs Zainab Ahmed during the inspection of the facility said that the $1.5 billion steel plant which is now nearing completion, would produce one million metric tonnes of steel annually. She emphasized that the facility is critical to the nation as it is tactical to the looming steel revolution in Nigeria.

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READ: Maize Scarcity: Premier Feeds, Crown Flour, 2 others import 262,000MT of Maize

What you should know

The $1.5 billion steel plant built by African Resources and Mines Limited, a subsidiary of African Industries Group (AIG) is at an advanced stage of completion.

The plant which is billed to commence the first phase of production in the mining of Iron ore, and production of Direct Reduced Iron in a matter of months is expected to produce one million metric tonnes of steel annually.

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(READ MORE:FG to provide support to Aviation investors)

Why this matters

This development is expected to resuscitate Nigeria’s steel industry which has been lifeless for a while, and help put an end to the importation of steel in Nigeria. This will also reduce the pressure on the Nation’s foreign reserve, and bolster the foreign reserve of the country.

It is expected to boost domestic steel production and attract foreign investors’ participation in the industry, especially auto producers around the world.

However, the facility will create employment opportunities for Nigerians both directly and directly and indirectly.

READ: House of Representatives oppose concession of Ajaokuta Steel Plant

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What they are saying

Alok Gupta, the Group Managing Director of AIG, said the firm would be mining iron ore to produce direct reduced iron, which would enable the company to produce higher-grade steel more efficiently.

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He explained that the investment by the company in the Nation’s steel industry will dramatically increase domestic production, and this will have multiple effects on the Nigerian economy.

READ: CBN moves to reduce cassava derivatives import worth $600 million  

READ MORE:FG slashes 2020 budget by N318 billion, sends to NASS

The Minister of Finance emphasized that the recent investment in the steel industry by AIG which is about to yield gains both for the company and the economy will attract the auto industries of the world to come into Nigeria and produce cars in Nigeria for Nigerians, and other countries in West Africa.

READ: Kachikwu advocates refineries repair as petrol landing cost reaches N180 per litre

Bottomline

The investment of AIG in the steel industry is expected to drive the country towards steel independence, and pave the way for Nigeria’s steel revolution and the development of the automobile industry in the nation.

Explore Data on the Nairametrics Research Website

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