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Legal experts seek due diligence at signing of telcom contract

Legal and Finance experts have called for more investment in the Telecommunication, Media and Technology (TMT) sector in a bid to grow the country’s GDP…

Legal and Finance experts have called for more investment in the Telecommunication, Media and Technology (TMT) sector in a bid to grow the country’s GDP and create employment opportunities. 

This call was made at a Breakfast session organised by the law firm of Duale, Ovia & Alex-Adedipe (DOA), a fast-growing commercial law firm providing expert services TMT, Finance, Energy and other key areas of law. 

The event, which took place at the Wheatbaker Hotel in Ikoyi, Lagos was the first in a series of business meetings to hold annually. It had in attendance key stakeholders in TMT and finance.

Speaking during the event, Adeniyi Duale, Managing Partner of the firm said Nigeria must collectively address the inhibiting factors to attracting investment into the telecommunication, FinTech, E-commerce and all other sectors of the economy that can help Nigeria realise its full potential and not continually depend on oil as mainstay of the economy. 

According to him, in the last 10 years there has been an increase in the number of companies who have received funding from investors. 

“As at 2008, there were about four companies who had received funding but today they are about 20 and we are grateful that you are a panelist. We are passionate about this industry and we are keen on supporting TMT companies from inception through various stages of their growth and cycle (which range from raising seed capital financing, early stage investments, growth capital as well as exits),” Duale said.

He disclosed that DOA also assists investors in identifying and carrying out proper legal diligence on targeted vehicles or companies in the sector as well as providing structuring advice and documentation to give effect to transactions. 

He noted that the breakfast session which focuses on investments in Nigeria’s TMT market is apt as it seeks to address development in Nigeria and Africa as a whole. 

Duale added that the inaugural edition of the DOA Business Breakfast Series seek to stimulate discussions and resolutions that can generate possible roadmaps for an industry that is itself disruptive and can assist the government’s growth and recovery plan. 

Speaking during the panel session, Akintoye Akindele, Co-Founder, Synergy Capital Managers, advised tech entrepreneurs to ensure investor engagements are very memorable and have a proper business preposition. 

“You must have a good business model and must be able to explain your business. You must be sure of the capital you need to drive your business model. You must also get the right people that will provide a legal framework around your business idea,” Akindele added.

Obinna Ekezie, managing director, Wakanow, who also spoke during the panel session, said Wakanow saw an opportunity and decided to create value to customers. 

“We identified lack of transparency, inability to make payment online and buy tickets as fast as possible. So, we used technology to create solution. This led to huge uptake for customers who needed these services,” Ekezie said.

Among key stakeholders at the event include: Gbenga Oyebode, Chairman, Aluko & Oyebode and Director, MTN; Idris Saliu, Co-Founder, Vanso (Now Interswitch); Elo Umeh, Founder/CEO, Terragon Group; Olumide Soyombo, Partner Blue Chip Technologies; and Dele Adeyinka, Chief Digital Officer, Wema Bank.

Others are: Ijeoma Agbot-Obatoyinbo, MD/CEO, FBN Quest Funds; Llyod Onaghinon, Head TMT, Stanbic IBTC, Adekumbi Ademiluyi, COO, Netplus and Sadiq Abu, Country COO, Barclays Nigeria.

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