By Goddy Egene
Hamilton & George Limited (H&G), a full-service investment bank that provides services in proprietary investments, advisory and corporate finance, has said it will focus significant attention on the small and medium enterprises (SME) space in 2021, considering that is the engine room of every economy.
The Co-founder/Director, H&G, Mr. Joseph Edgar, stated this in his message to staff and shareholders of the company, noting that the SME space will have their attention because the over 18 million players in the sector need expert advice which his company is willing to offer.
“This is why working with strategic partners, last year, we organised the private equity conference which pulled in the Nigerian Stock Exchange (NSE), NASD Plc and the FMDQ Group Plc and had over 500 Nigerians and firms in attendance,” he said.
Looking back at 2020, Edgar said H&G, like most firms entered last year with enthusiasm and vigour as the economy was showing promise and all indicators although not robust were promising.
He said: “We moved strongly into the energy sector clinching some of the most sought after mandates.
Digging deep into our mandate and relationships, advising on the $40 million FPSO transaction which remains a cornerstone in the industry. We also held down the real estate sector working very closely with our clients clinching and retaining mandates in excess of N10 billion.”
However, “the year wore on sluggishly from the effects of the COVID-19 pandemic which pushed the economy into a tepid mode culminating in a recession officially announced last quarter of 2020. We maintained course, witnessed reduced revenues which impacted negatively on income and projections,” he said.
According, him, despite the challenges, the organisation did not lay off any staff, rather it kept its promises to staff and moved operational base to a much more auspicious office complex.
“As the year came to an end heralded the birth of a new year we remain overtly optimistic. The macro-economic environment is looking gloomy. Inflation is double digit with no sign of letting up, the naira continues to take a bashing and inconsistent public policy pushing more uncertainty into the economy. The pandemic is also not letting up with daily infections regularly crossing the 1000 mark.
“Despite this, our firm has identified critical growth areas that we will be pushing. While deepening our stake in the energy and real estate sectors, we would aggressively move into Fintech by backing the Beetle initiative. Leveraging on technology and retail market, this push should deliver over 100,000. Nigerians within our space in the next 12 months,” he said.