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Business News

Indigenous oil firm institutes legal action against NCDMB and others

The Nigeria Content Development and Monitoring Board has been dragged to court by Pioneer Divers International Limited for breaching local content law.

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MTN Nigeria

The Nigeria Content Development and Monitoring Board (NCDMB), has been dragged to court by Pioneer Divers International Limited, an indigenous oil servicing firm operating in Akwa Ibom state. The lawsuit stems from an alleged breach of the local content laws by NCDMB.

The defendants – Other defendants in the suit include: Exxon Mobil, America’s Boron Oil and Gas Ltd, and Subtech Company from South Africa.

Details of the case

In a suit number HEK/96/2019, the plaintiff, through its lawyer, Nwabueze Onukogu, accused NCDMB of breaching the provisions of the Nigerian Oil and Gas Industry Content Development Act, 2010, which regulates the patronage of local firms by international companies.

NCDMB conspired with Exxon Mobil – Onukogu accused NCDMB of conspiring with Exxon Mobil to award a contract titled, “Diving, Topside and ROV”, in their operations field in Akwa Ibom to Broron Oil and Gas Ltd in partnership with Subtech  at $90 million.

The court should rule them guilty – He further urged the court to declare that the defendants have breached the provisions of the NOGICD Act, 2010, and to award them the sum of N100 million as damages in relief, having established that the defendants have failed in their duty.

“There shall be exclusive consideration of Nigeria indigenous companies of which the plaintiff is, and demonstrate ownership of equipment, Nigeria personnel and capacity to execute any work to bid on land and contract services including Diving, ROVs and Topside as contained in the Act.”

About the NCDMB

The Nigerian Content Development and Monitoring Board (NCDMB) was established by the Nigerian Oil and Gas Industry Content Development (NOGICD) Act, which came into effect on April 22, 2010.

The NOGIC JQS was created in line with section 55 of the NOGIC Act which states that the Board shall establish, maintain and operate a Joint Qualification System (JQS) in consultation with industry stakeholders which shall be administered in accordance with provisions set out in the regulations to be made by the Minister in accordance with the provisions of this Act.

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Business News

CAC sets 3-hour time line for company registration in 2021

The CAC is prioritising the reduction of the registration circle for new companies to just 3 hours before the end of the year 2021.

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CAC, Corporate Affairs Commission selects NIPOST as official courier partner

The Corporate Affairs Commission (CAC) has said that following the successful deployment of an end-to-end registration module, it was now prioritising the reduction of the registration circle for new companies to just 3 hours before the end of the year 2021.

This is coming after CAC had in November 2020, announced the implementation of new technology that will change the face of business registration including allowing customers to print their certificates with verifiable QR code from anywhere in the world.

This disclosure was made by the Registrar-General of the commission, Garba Abubakar, at a dinner in honour of the Chairman, Governing Board, CAC and Nigerian Ambassador-Designate to the Kingdom of Spain, Ademola Seriki.

In order to achieve this target, the Registrar-General said the commission was making arrangements to empower over 400 approving officers with working tools to process and approve registration applications either from home or anywhere necessary,” the agency stated.

Abubakar noted that the challenges of the Covid-19 pandemic had adversely hampered CAC’s delivery timeline.

He, however, pointed out that CAC was resolutely committed to serving its customers despite being forced to operate with less than 50% of its workforce.

While bidding farewell to Seriki, the Registrar-General said he received the news of his appointment with mixed feelings as CAC was going to miss his tremendous support and guidance.

Also speaking at the event, the Minister of Industry, Trade and Investment, Niyi Adebayo, described the outgoing CAC Chairman as a man of immense pedigree and endowed with enormous potential to justify the confidence reposed in him by the president.

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In case you missed it

  • The CAC recently announced the upgrade of its website and online registration portal to include features, which allow for the automation of some selected services and processes, in line with the Federal Government’s mandate of improving the ease of doing business in Nigeria.
  • The selected services and processes include Electronic search of company records, Upgraded Companies Registration Portal for Pre-incorporation filings and Post incorporation filings.

 

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Corporate deals

DEAL: Nigerian fintech software provider, Appzone raises $10m to scale its products and services

Appzone platforms are used by 18 commercial banks and over 450 microfinance banks in Africa.

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Appzone a fintech software provider that builds proprietary solutions for financial institutions and their banking and payments services announced that it has closed $10 million in Series A investment.

The Series A round was led by CardinalStone Capital Advisers, a Lagos-based investment firm. Other investors include V8 Capital, Constant Capital, and Itanna Capital Ventures. New York-based but Africa-focused firm Lateral Investment Partners also participated.

Founded in 2008 by Emeka Emetarom, Obi Emetarom, and Wale Onawunmi, Appzone functions as an enabler (at payment rails and the core infrastructure) within banking and payments.

READ: Shola Akinlade: The inspiration behind Paystack’s success

Appzone platforms are used by 18 commercial banks and over 450 microfinance banks in Africa. Together, they amass a yearly transaction value and yearly loan disbursement of $2 billion and $300million.

Before now, Appzone closed a $2 million deal from South African Business Connexion (BCX) in 2014. Four years later, it raised $2.5 million in convertible debt and bought back shares from BCX in the process. But overall, the company says it has raised $15 million in equity funding.

This new funding will be used to scale its products and services and expand across more African countries. The startup also plans to achieve scale by growing its engineering team.

READ: From Chemist to Bank CEO – The Story of Uzoma Dozie

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What they are saying

Yomi Jemibewon, the Co-Founder and Managing Director of Cardinal Stone Capital Advisers, said the firm’s investment in Appzone is further proof of Africa’s potential as the future hub of world-class technology.

READ: Bill Gates holds far more cash than Nigeria’s foreign reserve

Appzone is building a disruptive fintech ecosystem that will be the backbone of Africa’s finance industry with products across payments, infrastructure, and software as a service. The impact of Appzone’s work is multifold — the company’s products deepen financial inclusion across the continent whilst providing best-fit and low-cost solutions to financial institutions. Its emphasis on premium talent also helps stem brain drain, rewarding Africa’s best brains with best-in-class employment opportunities.”

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