Diamond Bank Plc on Tuesday gathered some of Nigeria’s techpreneurs and users at the Landmark Event Centre for Techfest 2018, a programme that seeks to chart a new course for the country’s tech ecosystem by examining how technology can help businesses grow and perform better.
The two-day event, which was an initiative of the bank, was made possible by the collaborative of companies such as MTN, Deloitte, Visa, Interswitch, Nigeria Inter-bank Settlement System Plc and Beat FM.
Addressing reporters prior to the commencement of the main event, Diamond Bank’s Chief Executive Officer, Uzoma Dozie, stated that the whole essence of the event is to demystify technology. According to him, the focus at the event is not just about the developers or the engineers, but specifically about how information technology is being utilised to solve problems and scale up businesses in health, education, etc.
Speaking further, he noted that the programme became necessary as a way of educating entrepreneurs on ways to derisk their businesses while increasing their productivity and ultimately ensuring customer satisfaction.
The whole essence of Techfest is to demystify technology. Here we are not just talking about developers or engineers, instead, we are looking at how to use technology to scale up education, health, etc. In other words, we are looking at how to use technology to increase productivity and create convenience for the customers. -Uzoma Dozie
On the cost implication of organising a two-day event of that magnitude, Mr Dozie stated that the company prefers to see it as an investment. According to him, it is important for Diamond Bank to educate its customers on the importance of utilising technology towards improving and securing their businesses, because only then will it be confident enough to lend to said businesses.
Also speaking during the interview sections was Mr Yemi Saka, a partner at Deloitte, one of the official partners of the event. He stated that his company decided to be a part of the event because Techfest is a first of its kind in Nigeria, with the potential of accomplishing more in the nearest future. According to him, it is impressive to see that a lot of technological innovations are taking place in Nigeria. Deloitte is, therefore, glad to be a part of an event that is poised “to continue to showcase what a lot of our young and vibrant people are innovating within Nigeria.”
Meanwhile, some representatives of MTN who spoke to Nairametrics during the event stated that the company willingly partnered Diamond Bank on the project because technology is what they do. The company was also present at Techfest with the intention of sharing ideas with other people in the sector.
The programme saw two-panel discussions, the first of which focused mainly on big data, how it is taking over the tech space, and how it will impact on businesses today and in the nearest future. The panelists, comprised of Diamond Bank’s CEO, Uzoma Dozie and the CEO of Flutterwave, Inioluwa Aboyeyi, and others, also identified the importance of data to every business; particularly SMEs. According to them, data can, among other things, help companies to understand the behavioural pattern of their customers; and this will, in turn, help business owners to serve their customers better.
The second set of panelists discussed angel investors, who they are, how to attract them, and how to be prepared for them.
The event continues today, during which some of the startups from the different hubs will pitch their businesses for chances of winning a prize.
Former Liberian President to sit on WHO review panel of COVID-19 response effort
Ellen Sirleaf has been picked alongside Helen Clark, to serve as co-chairs of the independent panel.
Following stern criticism by US President, Donald Trump, over their handling of the COVID-19 response efforts, the World Health Organization (WHO) has announced it will implement an independent panel to review said response efforts to the pandemic.
To this end, Liberia’s former President and West Africa’s first female President, Ellen Johnson Sirleaf, has been picked alongside former Prime Minister of New Zealand, Helen Clark, to serve as co-chairs of the independent panel. They will be responsible for selecting the other members of the panel, according to the WHO.
WHO’s Director-General, Tedros Adhanom, announced the panel will produce an interim report in a November meeting of global health ministers. Meanwhile, the substantive report would be produced by May 2021.
Tedros also said that the size of the pandemic calls for the need for a “commensurate evaluation, an honest evaluation”, adding that the WHO would be very serious with the preparation of the report.
The WHO members in May agreed to an independent review of the organization’s response to the pandemic. Ellen Johnson Sirleaf said the review of the body’s response would be challenging but looks forward to her role in doing what she can contribute to the response of the pandemic’s challenges.
The panel will also report monthly updates on the body’s response and will not only review the WHO’s response but also the International community’s response. Tedros added that it’s time for an honest reflection on the global response, saying a response will help with lessons on the pandemic.
Presidency dismisses allegation of Osinbajo receiving N4 billion from recovered loots
The accusation was described to be an obvious campaign of lies and calumny.
The office of the Vice President has reacted to a series of tweets accusing Professor Yemi Osinbajo of instructing the embattled acting Chairman of the EFCC, Ibrahim Magu, to release the sum of N4 billion out of N39 billion that was recovered from alleged looters.
These allegations have been described as “false and baseless”.
A statement that was signed by the Senior Special Assistant to the Vice President on Media and Publicity, Laolu Akande, said, “with all emphasis at our disposal, let it be firmly stated that these are totally false and baseless fabrications purposing to reflect goings-on at the probe panel investigating Mr Ibrahim Magu”.
Ibrahim Magu was relieved of his duties this week, after a probe was conducted on his activities as Acting Chairman of the nation’s anti-graft agency. He has since been replaced with Mohammed Umar.
Meanwhile, the statement by the Presidency also complained about the recent rise in people being paid to “peddle blatant falsehoods” against the Vice President and says Mr Osinbajo “will not be distracted by these obvious campaigns of lies and calumny”.
The statement added that the online publications “being criminally defamatory in nature” have been referred to law enforcement agencies for investigation.
OFFICE OF THE VICE PRESIDENT
— Presidency Nigeria (@NGRPresident) July 8, 2020
Stanbic IBTC observes closed period, as directors set to consider H1 results
The directors will also consider a proposal to pay an interim dividend to shareholders.
Stanbic IBTC Holdings Plc announced earlier today that its board of directors will meet on Wednesday, July 29, as part of preparations towards the release of the company’s consolidated and separate audited financial statements for half-year 2020. The directors will also consider a proposal to pay the company’s shareholders an interim dividend.
A statement issued by the Stanbic IBTC to the Nigerian Stock Exchange (NSE) noted that the scheduled board meeting is in tandem with guidelines contained in section 1.2 of the NSE’s rules book.
In the meantime, the bank Hold-Co has already commenced observing its closed period ahead of the release of the half-year financial statements. Specifically, Stanbic IBTC began observing its closed period on June 1st, 2020, the implication being that all insiders and their relatives have been prohibited from trading the company’s shares for more than one month now.
Note that the Stanbic IBTC’s closed period will continue until the half-year financial statements are released. Part of the statement which was signed by Chidi Okezie (Company Secretary), said:
“In accordance with the provisions of Section 1.2 of the Rules of The Nigerian Stock Exchange (The NSE) relating to Board Meetings and General Meetings of Issuers, we would like to notify The NSE and our Shareholders, that a meeting of the Board of Directors of Stanbic IBTC Holdings PLC (the Company) is scheduled to hold on Wednesday 29 July 2020 at 1:00 pm. The meeting will discuss amongst other items, the Company’s Consolidated and Separate Audited Financial Statements for the Half-year ended 30 June 2020 as well as a proposed interim dividend.
“In view of the above, the closed period for the release of half-year results, which commenced on Monday, 01 June 2020 will continue to be in effect until the release of the Company’s Half-year audited financial statements.”
Recall that the last earnings report that was released by Stanbic IBTC Holdings Plc was for Q1 2020. The unaudited report showed that gross earnings stood at N61.4 billion as against N58.7 billion in Q1 2019, even though interest income for the period declined by 12% year on year to N27.5 billion. Meanwhile, profit for the period stood at N20.6 billion, an increase when compared to N19.2 billion in Q1 2019.
Stanbic IBTC Holdings’ share price closed at N30.25 at the end of today’s trading session on the Nigerian Stock Exchange. Year to date, the stock has declined by nearly -20%.