Sukuk? Hold that thought!

I once heard the managing director of a Nigeria investment bank postulate a “perception deception” theory as the culprit and the major inhibiting factor to the successful development of vibrant non-interest capital market in Nigeria. This theory essentially suggests that a lack of understanding of the principles which underlie these capital market products is responsible for the erroneous perception by the lay man, that such non-interest financial instruments as Sukuk are geared at portraying the nation as an Islamic state.
Maybe/Maybe not; Nigeria is well on its way to issuing its maiden sovereign Sukuk, and No this does not make the country an Islamic State. 
Sukuk is popularly known as an Islamic or Sharia compliant instrument and may be either asset-based or an asset-backed financing instrument. How is this different from the conventional bonds, you might ask. Sukuk issuances are typically governed by the principles of Islamic commercial jurisprudence which prohibits the charging o…

Towards a competition Regime in Nigeria; Are we there yet?

Is this is it? Should we get our hopes up? Nigerians seem to have lost count of the ‘almost there’ feeling that comes with every competition bill that appears to make significant progress at the National Assembly only to get dropped along the way.
A search through the archives of the Nigerian parliament will reveal several abandoned bills on the subject among which are the Restrictive Trade Practices, Monopolies and Price Control Bill, the Nigerian Trade and Competition Commission Bill, and the Nigerian Antitrust (Enforcement and Miscellaneous provisions) Bill. According to a briefing paper on the UK Competition Regime, “competition is the lifeblood of a vibrant economy and fundamental to growth”. What then is it that keeps frustrating the efforts at a substantive competition regime in Nigeria?
The current bill before the 8th National Assembly seems promising, considering that it does not recommend the establishment of an entirely new agency, which has been one of the major reasons for…

Katlego Bagwasi-Kidisil


Tiger Brands’ failed investment in Nigeria – who bears this loss?

With Multichoice, MTN, and Standard Bank owning significant shares of the Nigerian market in various sectors of the economy, the acquisition of a 63.5% stake in Dangote Flour Mills by Tiger Brands in 2012 appeared to be the ownership of a major Nigerian entity by yet another South African Company or was it?
Fast forward to 2015, Tiger Brands appears to be saying ‘here, you can have your company back for nothing’, giving up its entire 65.7% stake in the company for a nominal consideration of $1 back to Dangote. There has to be a catch somewhere or this is just a massive loss. What do the shareholders of Tiger brands in South Africa have to say about the wasted investment? Who bears this loss? Tiger Brands is not only giving up its entire stake for a nominal consideration, the company is also writing off shareholder loans and assuming specific debts of the company.
It’s  taking a while for me to wrap my head around this. The announcement on the JSE implies that all of this is in exchange …

What happened to Christmas?

Growing up, there was a buildup of excitement for Christmas. Once the 12th month of the year arrived in all its glory, the countdown to Christmas would begin. Decorations would go up, the Christmas tree would finally come out of a place it had been relegated to for 11 months, Christmas lights would get strung, some with music some with burnt bulbs. Street Carnivals and Christmas parties would be held everywhere you turn, some fireworks and then of course the evergreen carols - same songs every year but never old.
December always arrived with pomp and pageantry bringing with it an unexplainable sort of excitement which climaxed with the entry into the New Year. And if the new year consisted of unique numbers like 01/01/01, then people would probably try to get married on that day to immortalize the date. December always had lots of parties, I think I said that before, but December is truly famous for weddings, you have to not live in Africa if you don’t know at least one person getting…

Award Tag

This 'Award Tag' by Cherrywine is a call to post by force. At a point in my life where I have no zeal to do anything but sleep after the day's job is done, it feels like punishment. But it's Cherrywine, and I love how her queen's English can quickly dissipate into some serious western Nigeria dialect, so here's my mega belated response to the Tag.

1. What is your secret weapon to lure the opposite sex, boy/girlfriend, husband/wife, potential? 
Ehm, to be honest, I do not think I have a secret weapon and seeing as I'm married, I think this question would be best answered by the husband.
2. What are the components of a perfect sandwich?
Caesar Mayo, Chicken breasts, Lettuce, Cucumber, Bacon (Just buy me a Pret Chicken Caesar)
3. Texting or talking?
Texting! Talking requires the perfect ambience and time. but you can text right in the middle of a concert.
4. How should people that speak with "a foreign accent with strong H-factor or any other factors" be pu…

The Game of Fives

Not exactly an accurate depiction, but a lunch time conversation went something like this;

"Me: So have you been to Nigeria?
Partner: Interestingly, I have. Been quite a long time now, over twenty years ago, (pause) for a sport.
Other Partner: What sport?
Partner: Fives!
Me and other Partner: What's that...?"

I'm not sure how many of you are like me and have never heard of the game of Fives until today. But I'm glad the other British partner was as oblivious as I was. What was intended to be a question for small talk ended up being my education about a game largely unknown even in the U.K.
To be honest, I was intrigued; because he went on to say a game of Fives attracted more fans in Nigeria than it did in the UK at the time, which was quite interesting for a game invented in the UK. So the game of Fives is very much like the game of Squash, it involves hitting a ball against a wall, but with your hands and with no back walls.
His experience is twenty five years old, …