By Bamidele Famoofo
Investment One Financial Services Limited, one of Nigeria’s leading financial services firm has called on Nigerians, especially the youths, to cultivate the habit of saving and investing, which it says, will make them achieve financial freedom and boost prosperity of the economy in the long run.
The firm, formerly GTB Asset Management, a wholly owned subsidiary of Guaranty Trust Bank Plc, made this known in Lagos, recently, at an event commemorating the social media week (SMW).
The firm seized the opportunity of the week to create awareness about savings and Investment among Nigerians with a talk tagged: “All You Need to Know about Investment.” Tope Omojokun, Managing Director, Investment One Funds Management Limited, who was one of the panelists at the forum, advocated the exploration of collective investment channels for youths who are still alien to the principles of investing.
“The youths and students are advised to approach investments cautiously not to burn their fingers when they are just starting up. It is better for them to embrace the mutual funds where their hard earned money can be managed by professionals, and help them grow confidence gradually in the matters of investments.”
She further advised that investors make use of the Ziing app launched by Investment One to automate savings and Investments.
Dr. Ola Brown, Founder, Flying Doctors Nigeria, who also sat on the discussion panel, cautioned young investors to be wary of investments that promise very high returns within a short period of time.
While Dr. Brown would not discourage risk- taking in investments, she cautioned that investors who have appetite for highly risky investments are at the risk of losing their entire livelihood in such ventures.
“Investors, especially the fresh ones, must shun ponzi schemes that promises unreasonable returns within a very short period, at all cost. They are advised to explore the avenue of investment clubbing, where they would learn the rudiments of investments before they begin to take the big steps towards investing bigger”, Brown said.
For Dr. Brown, the primary question which every investor must answer before venturing into any kind of investment is whether they would survive if they lost all their money in a particular investment.
Tomi Balogun, Founder, Vestract Company Limited, another panelist at the event advocated the culture of savings among Nigerians.
She alleged that the average Nigerian would spend their monies on frivolities rather than save the money for investment purposes.
“It is a known fact that Nigeria has a much lower savings culture compared to countries like China and even some others in the African continent.”
But beyond the poor savings culture of Nigerians, which to a very large extent, has hampered investment in the country, Balogun took a swipe on regulatory authorities in the financial industry, which she said, sometimes fail to discharge their major duty of protecting investors from opportunists.
On the part of government, Balogun noted that proactive policies must be introduced to stimulate robust economic activities and growth. While she joined her co-panelists in advocating the use of collective investment schemes, she also urged investors to balance their investment portfolios to mitigate against losses.
Investment One Financial Services Limited was incorporated in 2008 as GTB Asset Management, a wholly owned subsidiary of Guaranty Trust Bank Plc, is licensed by the Securities & Exchange Commission. The company offers financial services which include Asset Management, Stockbroking, Trust and Pension Fund Management, Investment Banking and Capital Management. Others are Private Banking and Venture Capital Services.