Nigerian Exchange Limited (NGX), Chartered Institute of Stockbrokers (CIS) and other market stakeholders on Monday held a mock-trading session and Closing Gong Ceremony in honour of late Otunba Michael Olasubomi Balogun, founder of FCMB Group, once an investment banking empire and major player in the country’s financial markets.
The late Balogun, known for his pin-striped suits, or flowing immaculate white agbada and white shoes with an accompanying walking stick, who died in London May 19, 2023, at the age of 89, was instrumental to the listing of many companies on the then Nigerian Stock Exchange (NSE).
Temi Popoola, Chief Executive Officer (NGX) described the late Balogun as a blessing to the capital market, and someone without whom, “we really cannot talk about our markets and I am sure that there are many careers here that he helped shape, and mine is a good example.
“We can’t express our gratitude to him enough for what he did to help our industry expand. It is difficult to locate another family in Nigeria like the Subomis that can represent on the Exchange as they are doing now.
“We are very grateful and we assure them that they can count on our support, going forward as the family continues to drive its strategic goals,” Popoola said.
Also paying tribute to the Olori Omoba of Ijebuland, Chairman of NGX Group, Alhaji (Dr) Umaru Kwairanga, reiterated that Subomi played a significant role in the development of investment banking in Nigeria and indeed laid the foundation for many of the nation’s first equity offerings while working at ICON Securities.
For him, the found and first managing director of First City Merchant Bank (later First City Monument Bank) “leaves a significant legacy and a number of monuments that would serve as evidence of his greatness well into the future.”
For Group Chief Executive Officer, NGX Group, Oscar Onyema, the market could take solace in the fact that Subomi led a great life and left a huge legacy that the capital market community will continue to talk about for years to come, by ensuring “that he looked out for the best interests of the capital market, especially during his tenure on the Council of the Exchange years ago.”
On his part, the CIS President, Oluwole Adeosun, said the market was “celebrating the life of a colossus, Otunba Subomi Balogun who was the pioneer first Vice President of our Institute. We commiserate with the family and will keep remembering his deeds in the capital market”.
In his own tribute, Bolaji Balogun, the Group CEO, Chapel Hill Denham and son of the deceased, said the fact that many “still remember our father, who retired 20 years ago, speaks a lot about him, and the caliber of outstanding people you are. He was very concerned about this market, the harmony of this nation, and the youth of Nigeria. I want to reassure each of you that the work we perform is essential to the growth of this nation.”
Commending the leadership of the Exchange and CIS, for the memorial, Group Chief Executive, FCMB Group Plc, Ladi Balogun, also a son of the departed flamboyant guru, described it is an encouragement for the family to keep his legacy on.
“Whilst this has being a very emotional time for our family, the way our father has been honoured by the Exchange, CIS and the entire country is truly inspiring to us. It is motivating us to go further, do better and make sure that his legacy lives on. We will not be alone in doing that. We will make sure we uphold his value and seek ways together with the exchange to transform the market and the economy,” Balogun said.