A view of Marina in the central business district of Lagos

Bamidele Famoofo

Bonds worth about N1.60trillion were listed on the trading floor of the FMDQ OTC Securities Exchange in the financial year ended December 31, 2017, THISDAY can report.

The FMDQ OTC Securities Exchange said it admitted the listings of seven bonds in the financial year. These were apart from 33 commercial papers (CPs) worth N152.35billion quoted on the floor of the securities market in the review period.

The FMDQ OTC Securities Exchange provides the platform for trading short and medium-term securities, where investors could pick quick returns on their investments.

“By their admission to the FMDQ platform, these securities gain access to the full complement of the unsurpassed FMDQ listings and quotations service, which include, but is not limited to, improved secondary market liquidity, efficient listings/quotations process, unprecedented transparency and information disclosure, global visibility and improved network effects,” FMDQ OTC disclosed during the review of activities in the market in the period.

The latest of the listings was the Pioneer Diaspora Bond and the Federal Republic of Nigeria (FRN) Eurobonds listed by the Debt Management Office (DMO) in the month of December, 2017.

The FRN Diaspora Bond – $300.00 million 5.625per cent Diaspora Bond due 2022 issued in June 2017, along with the two tranches of the FRN Eurobonds – $1.50 billion 6.500 per cent Notes due 2027 and $1.50 billion 7.625 per cent Notes due 2047 under its $4.5 billion Global Medium-Term Note Programme Eurobonds, were listed on the OTC Exchange to promote, among others, visibility for the issues and financial inclusion.

In the course of the investment year, the FMDQ OTC admitted commercial papers valued at N160.00billion. Corporate organisations, which raised short term capital by means of commercial papers in the review financial year included Lafarge Africa PLC, one of Nigeria’s leading cement manufacturers, which raised N60.00 billion and First City Monument Bank Limited, N100.00 billion.

The Wema Bank PLC N3.41 billion Series 1 and N13.62 billion Series 2 CP Notes under its N50.00 CP Issuance Programme were also quoted alongside Lafarge and FCMB on the OTC Exchange in the month of October. The FMDQ OTC revealed that the month of October saw key activities in the CP quotations space on the OTC Exchange.

FMDQ said it commenced the year with the commemoration of the successful quotation of the Access Bank PLC N8.45 billion Series 1, N4.22 billion Series 2 and N22.33 billion Series 3 Commercial Paper (CP) Notes under its N100.00 billion CP Programme on the OTC Exchange.

“This marked the beginning of a year, which saw significant activity in the CP market as corporates made a deliberate move to tap the debt market to raise short-term finance to support their business operations.”

In yet another remarkable and historic feat, FMDQ, also in July, welcomed the listing of the pioneer Infrastructure Debt Fund on the OTC Exchange. Chapel Hill Denham Management Limited, following the approval of SEC, registered and established the N200.00 billion Nigeria Infrastructure Debt Fund (NIDF) Issuance Programme, and subsequently issued the first series under this Programme – Series I 49,450,000 Units of N101.20 each, on FMDQ’s platform.

The NDIF was the first-ever listed infrastructure debt fund in Nigeria (and Sub-Saharan Africa) and aims to enable investors access infrastructure as an asset class, while providing the benefit of predictable returns available from long dated infrastructure debt investments.

Notwithstanding the successes achieved under the leadership of Mr. Onadele Bola-Koko, chief executive officer at the FMDQ OTC Securities Exchange in 2017, the market is upbeat about a better performance in 2018.

“Despite some challenging conditions faced in the markets during some periods in the year, they proved to be encouraging in terms of market development, and have, no doubt, set the pace for a significantly positive outlook for 2018”, the OTC market revealed.

The FMDQ remains very optimistic about the possibilities of the Nigerian markets and looks ahead to the coming year 2018 with much eagerness and expectation.

The OTC Exchange noted that it recognised the potential of fully-functional debt capital markets (DCM) and financial markets at large, and will remain steadfast in innovating and providing efficient services and infrastructure, as may be necessary, to support issuers, investors, government and their agencies and other corporate businesses at large, towards achieving an economy that would support sustainable development and directly impact the citizenry.