Faith Enang, Olatope Olawumi, and Eniola Daramola
With a three-year streak of winning the Chartered Financial Analysts National Research Grant, the team of scholars from the University of Lagos (UNILAG) Investment Society has secured the title for the fourth time.
The team consisted of five finalists from the faculty of management sciences. They are Oluchi Kem-Ajieh, Department of Finance; Oreoluwa Ayeni, Gladys Ajogwu, and Oluwatimiehin Awe from the Department of Economics and Abayomi Okeowo from the Department of Accounting.
After a series of interviews and cross-examinations, four out of the five-man team were selected from The Investment Society (TIS). The only “outlier” was Abayomi who could not join the society due to his off-campus residence.
This debunks the notion that being a part of TIS gave you an automatic slot to represent the school. And emphasizes your intellectual prowess as a person.
According to a team member, Oreoluwa, “ The fact that you are a member of TIS does not guarantee you a spot on this team. It is quite competitive, interview then later selection.”
For him, meeting the members of the team had the possibility of intimidation because they are all smart and first-class students.
He added that making the team does not even give you a shot at presenting as only four of the six-man team could present at the competition. Of which he was not part.
The team members had their specialization for the competition. Although they contributed based on their strengths, they all chipped in their quotas at all stages of preparation.
For Oluchi who was the team member, the financial analysis of their focus company: SEPLAT Energy was her responsibility. She was also the group’s timekeeper.
Her words, ‘’I handled the financial analysis that’s FA, it was supposed to be Abayomi because he was like our senior colleague of ICAN. We switched roles.’’
Oreoluwa worked initially on the industry analysis with Gladys and in the end, made slides for the final presentation.
Gladys was assisted by Oreoluwa to analyze the industry and she also took up the competitive positioning section.
While Abayomi was saddled with the valuation company, Timilehin did a general overview of the company.
He said, ‘’ For me, I primarily worked on getting the overview of the company and relevant information. That’ll be the business description, the corporate governance, that was also a major part of the research. Then I also to an extent contributed to the valuation, and the investment risk.’’
Responding to a question on the challenges faced while preparing for the competition, Abayomi revealed that for the first few months of their brainstorming, they lacked a conducive environment.
Fortunately, the absence of a designated classroom or office to work as a group did not prevent them from shining at the competition. All thanks to their faculty staff adviser, Dr. Peter Ama, whose office became their official port of call.
Dr. Ama, as Oluchi fondly narrated with the agreement of her teammates, was so invested in the project that he became a father figure to them.
‘’It got to a point where we started calling him daddy. He stopped being a faculty adviser or a staff adviser and he was like a guide. He genuinely had our interest at heart. Whatever stake he had in this, he made sure he went all in. He was also a source of motivation for us to give in 101%. He was a staff adviser who played his role to the fullest,’’ she said.
Another issue that threatened their success is the lack of relevant data to effectively research their focus companies. To solve this issue, Oreoluwa prescribed that the university set up key data points to collate information on relevant industries.
When asked how she felt to have emerged winner of the nationals and representatives of the country, Oluchi has this to say: ‘’ I’ll say I felt like every other member of this team felt, content, satisfied, I think I cried, cause those were really happy tears.
‘’You know there was a lot, it was a real joy and it was just content. I think that win sort of just spurred the fire to want to get more right so we’re gonna our best at the regional, sub-regional, and global if God wills.’’
We were also hinted that “as regards the next stage, we’re having a kick-off meeting today with the faculty adviser on how to approach the regional finals. And tomorrow, we’ll be having another meeting with the CFA in charge of regional finals, to know what we actually need for the next stage. We’re also doing the next presentation on the 20th of this month”.