Caption: NIDF Closing bell after listing on Nigerian Exchange Limited (NGX) on Thursday, October 5, 2023. Photo credit: @BBoason Omofaye
The Nigerian Exchange Limited (NGX), on Thursday listed 853,817,692 units of the Nigeria Infrastructure Debt Fund (NIBF), the first local currency-denominated infrastructure investment trust fund in Nigeria and Sub-Saharan Africa, at N108.39 each.
The fund, according to a statement by the Exchange is a N200bn public infrastructure investment fund managed by Chapel Hill Denham, and backed by major institutional investors such as the Nigeria Sovereign Investment Authority (NSIA), which has provided long-term financing in Naira for private infrastructure projects.
To commemorate the listing of the fund, which has since it was established six years in 2017 returned 155%, there was a Closing Gong Ceremony, where the management engaged market stakeholders in a Facts Behind the Listing presentation.
According to managers of the fund, the NIDF will remit quarterly dividends to investors by paying out profits from investing in industries like power, transportation, healthcare and education.
Chief Executive Officer, NGX, Temi Popoola appreciated Chapel Hill Denham for its consistent and immense value addition to the Exchange, while remaining a key contributor to capital market growth in the last five years.
Continuing, he recalled that “one big innovation in the last three years was the MTN public offer. It included a complete end-to-end digital application process, which could not have been possible without Chapel Hill. We have been trying to showcase Nigeria as an investment destination, and Chapel Hill has been a strong supporter of that system.”
Popoola added that the capital market is increasingly becoming a vehicle for solving key governance problems, especially in the aspect of raising debt funding, stressing that the NIDF is an elegant solution that exist not only in Nigeria but in foreign markets.
“The retail investor landscape will find this very attractive. It sells itself,” he stressed.
Commenting, Chief Executive Officer, Chapel Hill Denham, Bolaji Balogun said the listing of the fund is a great move for Nigeria’s economy, being “the first time an infrastructure debt fund is listed on the Exchange.
“NIDF has been existing since 2017 and it has distributed successively for 24 quarters. We have increased the diversity of the areas we invest into – transportation, power, education, telecoms, social infrastructure,” urging the government to invest consistently to grow the country’s infrastructure stock.
To investors, he also stressed the importance of infrastructure as an asset class.
On his part, the CEO of NIDF, Anshul Rai, gave credit to the fund’s work since its inception in 2017, noting how “through the good work of the team, we have been fortunate not to have Non-Perfomring Loans.
“We have had situations where the price of the funds have been very strong with very significant returns,” he added.
Echoing this sentiment, Phill Southwell, Chairman NIDF, lauded the listing, adding that by listing on the exchange, NIDF hopes to crowd in retail investors. He also said that the funds investment strategy has ESG integrated into it.