Investment One, a financial services firm recently launched Ziing a personal finance app.
Nairametrics was one of the guests invited to the exclusive launch and had a brief chat with Nicholas Nyamali Investment One’s Group Managing Director.
How long has the idea behind this been in development?
Nyamali stated that while the app had been in works for the last one year, the company had framed the concept in the last 10 years.
You can look at it in two ways. Longer view is 10 years ago when Investment One started. We were trying to solve a problem:
- Help people manage their investments
- Help people achieve their investment goals
So, conceptually, this is a 10-year journey we’ve been on. But as a digital product, in the last one year, we wanted to provide an app which, from your fingertips, enables you to take complete control of your finances.
Is this a play to reach out to younger investors?
While the app will help the firm reach a younger audience, it is also targeted at customers looking for convinience.
Yes that is right, with a technology platform we are trying to reach younger people, but it’s also for those who we won’t categorize as young but want convenience.
If today I want to buy shares in a company, I can call a broker, who takes my order, then goes to the floor of the stock exchange to buy the shares for me.Alternatively, with the app, I can trade directly on the floor of the exchange with no intervention from a broker.
With the Ziing app on your phone and at your fingertips, you can buy and sell shares on the floor of the stock exchange, you can buy treasury bills, you can invest in mutual funds, you can redeem your investment in mutual funds, you can invest in fixed deposit, all at your fingertips on your phone.
Do you have any concerns about workers being replaced by Technology?
In his view, increased adoption of technology means professionals in the finance space would have to upgrade their skills.
So the question is about the jobs for tomorrow. We’ve asked ourselves that question but you see, two things are at play here: I think artificial intelligence and technology at large will impact jobs. But, I also believe that it will force the rest of us to upgrade our skillset and what we do.
He then gave an example of how technology had changed the banking space.
Look at banking as an example. Nobody does bulk cash counting anymore. With the payment systems functions available on the phones and ATMs, cash in circulation is being reduced. This means those who count cash will be forced to find employment elsewhere. This app suggests the job of brokers and Advisors is on the line, but if they develop themselves, they can be participants in the new work environment of the future where technology will be the mainstay
In the pipeline
In conclusion, Nyamali also stated the firm would add more features to the app before the end of the year.
You can look out for improvements and new additions on the Ziing app. Also at the end of this year or early next year, look out for us to take the app beyond the shores of Nigeria as we try to engage international investors
Founded in 2008, Investment One is licensed by the Nigerian Stock Exchange (NSE), Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC), and Nigerian Pensions Commission (PENCOM) to provide a buffet of financial products and services.
The company was formerly known as GTB Asset Management, a wholly owned subsidiary of Guaranty Trust Bank, before Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) reforms in the financial sector led to GTB divesting its ownership in 2012.
In 2010, the CBN mandated that Commercial banks divest their non-banking subsidiaries or form a holding company.
FG announces schedule for 4th evacuation flight from the USA
The evacuees will be expected to present an original COVID-19 negative test result not older than 14.
The Federal government has approved the fourth evacuation flight for Nigerians stranded in the United States of America for July 28.
According to a statement that was signed by the Consulate General of Nigeria, the Ethiopian Airline with flight number ET509 will depart Newark Liberty International Airport, New Jersey on Tuesday 28 July 2020 by 21:15hrs and arrive Nnamdi Azikiwe International Airport, Abuja on Wednesday 29 July 2020 by 13:25hrs.
“All prospective evacuees duly registered with any of the three Nigerian missions in the USA should purchase their one-way tickets at a cost of $1250 for economy class and $2800 for business class for adult/child fare including all taxes with the usual percentage reduction for infants under 2 years,” the statement read.
READ ALSO: FG acquires profiling robots for airport
In line with the earlier announced protocols from the Nigerian Presidential Task Force on COVID-19, the evacuees will be expected to present an original COVID-19 negative test result not older than 14 days on the day of departure at the airport.
There will also be a temperature check at the airport, and any intending evacuee with a body temperature above 38°c or any symptoms suggestive of COVID-19 will not be allowed to check-in.
Evacuees are also required to wear a face mask as a matter of necessity and be in possession of hand sanitizer for intermittent use during the flight, while also adhering to the instructions of the
Furthermore, all returnees are enjoined to adhere strictly to all instructions of Port Health Services (PHS) officials and observe other entry screening protocols on arrival.
Notice on the FOURTH Evacuation Flight from the United States of America to Nigeria. #StayHomeSaveLives #COVID19Nigeria #COVID19 #PTFCOVID19 @NigeriaGov @DigiCommsNG @USinNigeria @FMICNigeria pic.twitter.com/NFVWWDGgSx
— Geoffrey Onyeama (@GeoffreyOnyeama) July 10, 2020
Covid-19: British High Commission to resume visa application in Nigeria
Nigerians who want to visit the UK can do so as soon as international flight operations resume.
The British High Commission in Nigeria has announced plans to resume visa processing in the country. It revealed that it will soon begin receiving visa applications from Nigerians who want to travel to the United Kingdom (UK).
This was disclosed in a public statement by the British High Commission in Abuja on Thursday, July 9, 2020.
It said that Nigerians who want to visit the United Kingdom can do so as soon as the international flight operations resume in the country. The statement said:
“We know there are many Nigerian nationals hoping to be able to travel to the UK when flights resume, both for employment and to see family members.
“UKVI are working closely with TSL contact, our commercial partner, to reopen visa application centres that were suspended due to COVID-19. UK visa application centres are reopening in phased manner globally when it is safe to do so and when we can operate an effective service.
“TSL contact are putting appropriate measures in place and working hard to reopen in Nigeria. We will share details of when VACs will reopen soon,”
READ MORE: US to stop issuing visa for Birth Tourism
It can be recalled that the Federal Government had shut down the airports to both domestic and international flight operations in March as part of measures to contain the spread of the coronavirus disease.
Following the gradual resumption of domestic flight operations, Nigerians are expecting that international flight operations might be resuming soon.
Nigeria’s excess crude account falls to $72 million
Nigeria’s excess crude account has now fallen by a whopping 98% in just 5 years.
Nigeria’s Excess Crude Account (ECA) now stands at $72 million as the country continues to grapple with an unprecedented revenue crisis not seen since the early eighties. The ECA account has now fallen by about 98% within the last 5 years.
The information on the excess crude account was revealed by the Minister of Finance, Zainab Ahmed in a National Economic Council Meeting during the week. The ECA is a savings account retained by the Federal Government and is funded by the difference between the market price of crude oil and the budgeted price of crude oil as contained in the appropriation bill.
There were major concerns last November when it was reported that the ECA balances held just $324.5 million one of the lowest balances recorded at the time. At $72 million the ECA is in low territory highlighting the effect of the fall in crude oil prices this year. Crude oil prices have crashed to sub-zero in March and have risen back o just over $40/barrel in recent weeks. However, it still remains low from Nigeria’s previous budget benchmark.
ECA in the news
About a year ago Nairametrics reported Nigeria’s Excess Crude Account has dropped to $480 million. This is as controversy continues to trail the $1 billion military spendings which were withdrawn from Nigeria’s Excess Crude. According to the Central Bank of Nigeria’s annual report for 2018, Nigeria’s crude excess account fell from $2.45 billion in 2017 to $480 million as of December 2018.
Just 5 years ago (August 2015) the ECA stood at $2.2 billion. This was the early days of the Buhari administration. It was $3.6 billion in February 2014, one of the highest balances on record. That same month, at its monthly FAAC, the government agreed to remove fuel subsidy from its books. Fuel subsidy is currently being borne by the NNPC.
The Controversies: Last year, the federal government under President Muhammadu Buhari was accused of mismanaging the country’s Excess Crude Account especially the $1 billion reportedly spent on military equipment.
- The National Security Adviser (NSA) retired Major General Babagana Monguno Gen. Babagana was quoted to have disclosed that he was not aware of the whereabouts or disbursement of the $1billion drawn from the ECA by the Buhari presidency in 2017 for security purposes.
- While controversies trail the statement credited to the NSA, with many describing it as diversion of public funds, the Presidency provided some explanations.
- Responding to the allegations, Senior Special Assistant on Media and Publicity, Garba Shehu, disclosed that various procurements had been made for the purchase of critical equipment for the Nigerian Army, the Nigerian Navy, and the Air Force, contrary to the allegations.
Nigeria’s ECA in retrospect: In Nigeria, there are two Sovereign Wealth Funds: the Excess Crude Account and the Nigeria Sovereign Investment Authority (NSIA). Note that these two are funded by the savings earned when oil prices are at peak.
- Hence, as a larger chunk of revenue is appropriated for ECA and NSIA, the country’s external reserves are likely to fall.
- Note that the sovereign wealth fund was established to address the controversies surrounding the Excess Crude Account.
- The fund is usually expected to generate revenue to meet budget shortfalls in the future, provide dedicated funding for the development of infrastructure and saves for future generations.
ECA depleted by 98% in 5 years: A closer look at the various annual reports of the Central Bank of Nigeria shows that Nigeria’s excess crude account has now fallen by a whopping 98% in just 5 years.