As NASD PLC approaches its 9th Annual General Meeting, I, with mixed feelings, am privileged to share some important news with you about our journey.
Together with the Board of Directors and staff-past and present, we have over the last 10 years carefully stewarded an over-the-counter market that has world class controls, running on apt; fit for purpose technology and excellently governed.
From inception, our goal was to create a self-sustaining market that relies on its practices rather than individuals. We also wanted a company and securities exchange that would live into the next century as a sustainable, critical market infrastructure. Indeed, no vehicle (NASD included) can get from its start point to its destination without shifting gear, changing lanes and sometimes changing drivers.
In recognition of the above and the fact of natural human physical limitation, I shall therefore be retiring from my position as the Managing Director and Chief Executive Officer of NASD PLC on June 30, 2022.
Starting in 1st Gear
In 2011, I was invited by Mr. Oladipo Aina to consider acting as project manager for “an association of brokers” who had the vision for an alternate market.
The buzz and enthusiasm I had then still remains with me in 2022.
Indeed, I have been blessed to oversee the crafting of market rules that met the requirements of the Securities and Exchanges Commission [“SEC”]. We gradually built a community of over 140 Participating Institutions and over have admitted over 45 public securities to trade. I have also had the joy of working with excellent IT professionals who evolved us firstly from a home-grown electronic board to our current FIX-enabled trading platform – now being tight coupled to the Central Securities Clearing System [“CSCS”].
In 2022, the NASD OTC Securities Exchange market capitalization hit its highest ever value of over ₦1 trillion.
The road ahead of NASD continues to get broader and I believe new co-travelers will join on that journey.
I therefore am excited to introduce to you Mr. Eguarekhide Longe who shall take over from me in the driver’s seat of NASD.
Eguarekhide Longe comes with a superb background as a professional. He is a highly experienced stockbroker and asset manager and is an innovative, problem solver – equipped with strong business acumen and excellent exposure to the capital market.
I am totally convinced that under his innovative leadership, NASD will build momentum and continue along its destined path.
I leave, fulfilled that I delivered a foundation for NASD. We correctly depended heavily on technology as a resource to run a very lean and efficient organization and I wistfully note how significantly it will broaden the spread of the capital market.
Coupled with the new working order, I am heartened that NASD shall open up new fields of operation in the near future under Mr. Longe’s visionary leadership.
I have every confidence that NASD shall continue to deliver flexible, liquidity solutions even more efficiently for investors and improve capital raising solutions for Issuers. I wish the company and its constituents God’s speed.
None of the above could have been done without you!
I deeply appreciate every person I have come in contact with during my tenure as MD and CEO of this company. Some of you challenged our ideas while others help us refine our approach. Either way, we are NASD because you saw it fit to trust us with your investments, issuances, mandates and instructions. I sincerely value every contribution you have made to our existence.
I specially thank my colleagues at NASD for accommodating my consistent restlessness and almost obsessive attention to detail. You trusted and supported me in this enterprise even at times when I had not communicated the direction. We have been well prepared for this time.
I cherish my years of travelling with you on this journey as I step down. I shall definitely embark on another journey and shall be delighted should our paths cross again. I shall always wish you our stakeholder, NASD staff and all my contact points the very best and fulfillment in your respective journeys.
About the Author
Bola Ajomale is the immediate past CEO of NASD Plc