To enable it dispose several billions of naira worth of assets that are tied down in its book due to inappropriate valuation, strange market forces among other vices, the management of Asset Management Corporation of Nigeria (AMCON) has called for the creation of ‘AMCON Market,’ which it said would involve key players in valuation, insurance, legal among other strategic stakeholders. AMCON has a stockpile of assets, which it is finding difficult to dispose in the regular open market. The assets cut across critical sectors of the economy such as real estate, energy, transportation and aviation, maritime, agriculture and manufacturing just to mention a few.
Dr. Eberechukwu Uneze, an Executive Director with AMCON made the call while declaring open a one-day sensitization forum for AMCON’s Valuers & Receiver Managers in Lagos. The conference is part of AMCON’s renewed strategy to continually engage different professionals whose practice directly impact on its recovery activities. The conference is themed “Valuation of AMCON assets: The Imperatives of Competence, diligence and commitment.”
Dr. Uneze, who represented the Managing Director/Chief Executive Officer of AMCON, Mr. Ahmed Kuru, said the creation of the proposed AMCON market would help address a lot of irregularities that affect the outcome of valuation in the country. He said, “We are using this opportunity to appeal to the conscience of valuers to the realities and the negative implication of wrong valuation to the recovery effort of AMCON. When you carry out this assignment as valuers especially when it relates to AMCON assets, please make use of the appropriate methodology. When you are appointed as valuers for AMCON please don’t just look at it as a business; kindly consider it as a national assignment because we owe it a duty to Nigerians to recover these debts as quickly as possible because AMCON is not here in perpetuity. Your contribution would help strengthen the hands of AMCON to enable the corporation realise its mandate.”
The AMCON boss said the call had become necessary because of the feedback the corporation gets from key stakeholders. He said there were allegations of unprofessional behaviour by some valuers who unnecessarily overvalue some assets, which in turn makes it impossible for AMCON to dispose such assets. He said again, “The feedback we get from some of our key stakeholders is not palatable. Some of them have come to us with the allegation that some obligors go to the extent of trying to influence the decision of some valuers. That is very wrong. Such sharp practice would not help our recovery mandate. It is also not good because the money AMCON is recovering belongs to Nigeria. That is why we are calling for the creation of an AMCON market because the implication of the outcome of your valuation has very huge impact on our mandate.”
He informed the participants that the assets that are with AMCON belong mostly to companies and organisations whose loans were taken over by AMCON. According to him, when the assets are overvalued at the point of forfeiture by obligors of AMCON, it becomes difficult for the corporation to realise the loan settlement amount or dispose the assets at competitive price, which underscores the need for a market realisable valuation by valuers at all times. He said this is so critical because an over valuation of assets results in overstated forfeiture value and subsequent financial loss to AMCON at disposal.
In his own contribution, Chief Mike Igbokwe SAN, called on the leadership of AMCON to engage only tested valuers with the required expertise to be able to do the right job, which he said would help the corporation in its recovery efforts. He however cautioned firms that are into the business of valuation to be professional in their approach as whatever valuation reports they carry out can also be tested by other firms, which could rubbish the image of such a valuation firm that submitted unprofessional report that did not follow proper methodologies ab-initio.
The conference also featured presentations and contributions from Mr. Nosa Aisedion, AMCON’s Head of Valuation and Insurance; Mr. Aliyu Kalgo, Head of Asset Sales, AMCON; Mrs. Iyatum Adode Kobiti, Group Head, Corporate Services and Mr. Sulaiman Abdul Majeed, Head, Energy Department. Others include Prof. C.K Agomo of the University of Lagos; Mr. Talmiz Usman; Mr. Ralph Opara, past president Institute of Loss Adjusters; Prof. Bioye Aluko of Obafemi Awolowo University and Mr. Osy Chijoke Kamalu of Osy Kamalu Associates, just to mention a few.
AMCON was established in 2010 as a resolution vehicle to purchase the non-performing loans from banks, inject liquidity into the banks and subsequently recover the purchased bad loans. Over the last seven years, AMCON has successfully stabilised the Nigerian banking sector by restructuring and collecting some of these loans. What is outstanding on its portfolio at the moment are hardcore debts, which the corporation is doing everything within its powers to settle before its sunset.