BY KENNETH EZE
The inaugural NGX TechNovation conference on Thursday brought together a caste of leading industry experts to dimension the digital transformation of the financial services space with a keen focus on the Nigerian capital market.
The virtual event with the theme, Technology, Platforms and Markets, featured critical discussions around technology, partnerships and innovation that could boost the Nigerian economy.
The Chief Executive Officer, NGX, Temi Popoola, said, “The conference is particularly important to us at NGX because we have stepped into an era that signals a new horizon of opportunities.”
He described the NGX as a technology powerhouse that leverages smart business models to deliver vertical platforms across capital formation, investment, capacity building, market development and a plethora of other services within the capital markets ecosystem.
“We are committed to developing innovative solutions that drive, not just internal efficiency at the exchange but that support wider efforts by various stakeholders at ensuring a full digitalisation of the Nigerian capital markets.
“We are extending our platform competencies in line with our strategic aspirations while leveraging best in class digital innovation to deliver value to our stakeholders and markets,” he added.
The Director General, Securities and Exchange Commission Lamido Yuguda, said, “I would like to begin by commending Mr. Temi Popola, CEO, NGX and his team for putting together an event like this which shows our resilience as a people and ability to face challenges.”
He opined that the theme of the conference, Technology, Platforms and Markets indeed captures the mood in world today and the inevitable coming together of the three segments in view of the COVID-19 pandemic which has forced us all to stretch possibilities and adopt new ways of performing our functions. “These recent shifts certainly pose a challenge and a huge opportunity to both financial sector regulators and conventional financial services providers like NGX. It is, therefore, important that we facilitate conversations like this to ensure we strike the right balance between innovation, integrity and protection of investors, without whom there will be no markets,” he observed.
Co-Founder and CEO, Flutterwave, Olugbenga Agboola, who gave the keynote address, noted, “As of today, we are in the information age where technology is leapfrogging every business model and infrastructure we can think about.
“This has of course facilitated growth that we see across the landscape in different terrains. A key driver in the proliferation of technology solutions in Nigeria has been mobile penetration and we expect to see continued growth in this regard.”
He pointed out that against the backdrop of evolving solutions, African startups have raised over $1billion in funding which is unprecedented for technology companies.
“The industry must however recognise that funders and regulators are the biggest stakeholders that must work together to drive digitalisaton across Africa and provide a platform for capital raising and global recognition for Nigerian companies at all stages,” Agboola added.
The event featured a presentation from President, Africa Fintech Network, Segun Aina, who commended the organisers for demonstrating continued commitment to digital initiatives.
He said, “I commend NGX Limited for putting this conference together, as it shows continued commitment to digital initiatives that can reposition and improve the Nigerian Capital Market and ensure its leadership position not only in Africa and across the world.”