By Ayobami Adedinni
The Asset Management Company of Nigeria has restated its commitment to intensify plans to recover all debts through judicial processes and regular discussions.
Speaking with our correspondent, Head, Corporate Communications, Jude Nwazor said AMCON would use all legal options to ensure that the plan is successful.
He said, “We recover debt every day. It’s not every debt recovery that we make noise about, it is the one that the court mandates us to do because we are a law abiding public organization.We have recovered a lot in terms of assets, cash, equities and others because as we speak the figures are increasing”, he said.
According to him, AMCON has ensured the stability of the banking sector adding that the company rescued banks during the 2008 global economic meltdown.
In his words, “you remember the history behind the creation of AMCON which came as a result of the 2008 global economic crunch. The Government at the time in its wisdom had to find a way to make sure it does not affect the economy came up with the smart idea of creating an Asset Management Company in 2010.
“The primary assignment was to take up the Non-Performing Loans (NPL).
AMCON intervened in almost 22 banks especially the 3 that had gross challenges i.e. Bank PHB, Spring Bank and Afribank which were renamed Keystone Bank, Enterprise and Mainstreet Banks respectively. AMCON brought them back to the path of profitability to stabilize them.
Right now, those 3 banks are in the hands of new investors that are running them successfully.
“AMCON also provided funds for the banks that did not have breach.
AMCON has succeeded in stabilizing the Banking sector. This is when most banks failed all over the world; Nigerian banks actually did not fail. Many Nigerian banks are rated among top in the world which could be credited to AMCON because if that did not happen, it would have been disaster,” he stated.
According to him, AMCON has also ensured the nation’s transport sector is a thriving one adding that “the current administration is trying to make sure that they sanitize the industry in order for them to compete favourably with counterparts across the world.
“We have also done much in stabilizing the Automobile industry.
Peugeot Assembly which we call PAN in Kaduna is one of the beneficiaries of AMCON’s intervention. With the right investment, PAN will go back to being profitable.
“Of course, you know the strategic role that AMCON has played in the aviation industry most especially in Aero and Arik but not just the two like Afri jet and others. The intervention in the sector is strategic. You know you can’t have a successful economy if the aviation sector is not thriving.
“We came into Arik because of the huge debt in the place, staff were being owed backlog of salaries, passengers were complaining, there was frequent cancellation of flight and so many negative things that were not healthy for the sector. They had very few aircraft which is why there was rampant cancellation of flights. But when we came in, we stabilized operation.
“From the few aircraft, now there are 14 and the team there is working hard because they know the critical nature of Arik. You know there are some routes in Nigeria where it is only Arik that goes there such as Maiduguri and Sokoto. Government would not want such an airline to go down like that.
Speaking further, he said because some bad debtors may want to use the timeframe of its establishment to their advantage, the AMCON management under Mr. Ahmed Kuru is intensifying its recovery plans Recall that last week, the company said it recovered N134 billion loans in the 2016 financial year.
The Managing Director of AMCON, Ahmed Kuru, disclosed this at a news conference in Lagos.
Speaking on the performance of the company in 2016, Mr. Kuru said, “In 2016, our total recovery was N134 billion. Not all of them are cash.
N86.9 billion came from cash collection and some debtors that felt that they could settle some outstanding obligation through forfeiture of their assets”.
“So, assets forfeiture amounted to about N30.4 billion, while N8 billion came from sale of properties,” he said.
The AMCON boss said in spite of the economic challenges, the corporation was able to improve on its performance by reducing its group losses for the year.