Home to about 200 listed companies and 251 dealing members, the Nigerian Stock Exchange (“NSE” or “Exchange”) leverages its unique position to advance the promotion of sustainability initiatives in its market. The Exchange’s sustainability initiatives are anchored on four pillars: Marketplace, Workplace, Community and Environment. In addition, the Exchange ensures that programmes which are implemented are in support of the Sustainable Development Goals. This aligns with its commitments and contributions to international partnerships such as the Sustainable Stock Exchanges Initiative and the United Nations Global Compact, amongst others.
In the same vein, NSE is committed to enriching the knowledge of both current and prospective investors, thereby improving investor confidence in the Nigerian capital market. The Exchange’s financial literacy programmes serve as platforms for enlightening investors on the operations of the capital market and the opportunities it offers for durable wealth creation. These programmes include: Investor Clinics; Annual Essay Competitions; X-Tours, excursion by schools to the Exchange; commemoration of the annual Global Money Week; and investment programmes across various media platforms.
As part of its contribution towards building a financially savvy generation, NSE recently partnered with Kinabuti Fashion Initiative to empower young people with entrepreneurial skills and financial literacy, leveraging its ‘Dare2Dream’ initiative across university campuses in Nigeria.
The Dare2Dream initiative, now in its fifth year, provided NSE with the opportunity to help young people looking to start careers in the creative arts space, specifically models, dancers, musicians and presenters. Delivered in the form of a reality show, it comes in three phases, starting with campus activations to create awareness and select the top creative minds; thereafter, a boot camp was held to provide essential training for the participants and to trim down numbers through eliminations; and lastly, a grand finale event was held to showcase the identified talents and announce the winners.
The partnership saw NSE engage with about 25,000 undergraduates during the 2018 edition of the Dare2Dream activations, giving them financial literacy talks, educating them about the various offerings available in the capital market, and conducting a trivia quiz to test understanding of the learning from the various talks. Stockbrokers were also on the ground to assist any interested young people to open brokerage accounts and begin to invest for the future.
In 2018, the campus activations were held at five Nigerian universities: University of Lagos, University of Port Harcourt, University of Calabar, University of Jos, and Enugu State University. It was an avenue for the NSE to present the capital market as an approachable brand to young people, using the visits to the campuses to talk about investment prospects, while extending the NSE’s financial literacy agenda.
A major highlight of the boot camp was the finalists’ visit to the NSE, tagged ‘A Day at the Exchange’. This engagement, which included a tour of the Exchange’s trading floor and a Financial Literacy Masterclass, created an avenue for closer interaction with the twelve finalists who went ahead to share their experiences with peers on various social media platforms, thus increasing the impact and expected learning outcomes. To ensure the finalists took their lessons seriously, the scores they earned from the quiz after the Financial Literacy Masterclass formed part of the criteria used to select the winner during the Grand Finale.
For increased reach and impact, the recorded shows from the various campus activations, the boot camp, and the grand finale will be aired on national and pan-African television stations as well as posted online, and the NSE’s Financial Literacy training will therefore receive significant airplay amidst the target audience – young people.
For the NSE, the motivation to partner with Kinabuti on this initiative stems from its belief that only a highly financially literate population can take advantage of suitable financial products and services to achieve sustainable financial well-being. Given that young people are very much inclined towards entertainment, the partnership is a winning strategy which allows for fun and learning. It also complements the NSE’s various financial literacy programmes aimed at building a generation that is competent and confident in choosing and utilising financial products and services to raise their welfare. With about 65% of the Nigerian population being young people, the NSE carefully chose this partnership to help raise the financial literacy level of Nigeria’s future leaders, essential for building an inclusive and sustainable economy.