25 April 2013, Lagos – The combined market capitalisation of the eleven companies currently listed on the Alternative Securities segment of the Exchange is now N4.10 billion says Oscar Onyema, CEO, the Nigerian Stock Exchange.
He made the disclosure at the launch of alternative securities market for emerging businesses in Lagos.
The companies, which span multiple sectors, include; Adswitch Plc, Afrik Pharmaceuticals Plc, Anino International Plc, Capital Oil Plc, Juli Plc, McNichols Consolidated Plc and Rak Unity Petroleum Company Plc.
Others are Rokana Industries Plc, Smart Products Nigeria Plc, Union Venture & Petroleum Plc and West Africa Aluminium Products Plc. He stated as at 2012, the companies polled negative return -1.62 percent and year-to-date return of 1.71 percent in first quarter of 2013.
Lamenting the difficult being faced by the emerging companies in Nigeria, Onyema said that some of the identified problem militating against their accessing the capital market includeculture of non-compliance, unclear purpose and inferior perception, restriction on the amount of capital that could be raised, below-average performance of companies, as well as inadequate accounting standards, controls and management of resources
He further stated that companies in that category have difficulty in accessing long term capital due to high cost of funds as a result of perceived high risk and informal nature of their business.
He added that the companies have nclear and specific rules to govern the board’s decisions.
According to him, the NSE has taken steps to make some interventions in the area of introduction of Designated Advisers to assist ASeM companies meet post-listing obligations; the Exchange has also formulated clearly defined brand identity for the board.
“We give support to ASeM companies through value added services and advocacy effort; we introduced alternative capital raising products, in addition to creation of ASeM Rule Book,” Onyema stated.
Speaking at the event, Muhammad Nadar Umar, Director-General, Small and Medium Enterprises Development Agency of Nigeria (SMEDAN) noted that recent data provided by the National Micro-Small and Medium Enterprises, MSMEs collaborative survey 2010, put the number of MSMEs in Nigeria at 17.28 million with total employment put at 32.41 million, even as he added that deliberate efforts must be put in place to grow these numbers if the country must achieve its national vision of being among the 20 most industrialised nations by the year 2020.
“To achieve this, all the challenges confronting the MSMEs must be addressed, especially effective access to affordable finance. The ASeM provides a platform for access to long term finance for growth,” he affirmed.
*Nkiruka Nnorom, Vanguard