Category Archives: Michael Chu’di Ejekam

From the Michael Chu’di Ejekam Blog: New Lagos Mall Opened

Michael Chu’di Ejekam has been involved in the creation of several malls, including the Ikeja City Mall and the Jabi Lake Mall, as well as the Abuja and Accra Malls. These kinds of projects are always exciting, as they show that investors have faith in the economy and they bring jobs and growth to the area. Although Michael Chu’di Ejekam was not involved in the newest mall to open in Lagos, Nigeria, it’s still good news for local residents.

The Maryland Mall is Open

Onikepo Akande, President of Lagos Chamber of Commerce and Industry (LCCI) spoke at the inauguration celebration. “It is my sincere belief that this new mall will help to expose and grow the manufacturing and commercial potential of Lagos state and by extension, the national economy,” she said. Anchored by a Shoprite store, with many other venues for entertainment, shopping, and services, the location is expected to do quite well. Many businesses are eager to take up slots in the 7,700 square metre property, including companies like Stanbis IBTC Bank and The Place restaurant. Akande gives credit to the team behind the new development, explaining, “Indeed, retail is one of the cornerstones of trading and investment, and Purple Capital, the developers of Maryland Mall, have done extremely well to give Maryland a new lease of life through this retail investment.”

It’s a Unique Structure in a High-Volume Area

The Lagos State Ministry of Transport carried out studies of the area, highlighting traffic patterns and the best way to position things. It’s estimated that 5,000 cars will pass by every single hour, which will bring people naturally to the mall throughout the normal course of their days. Unlike most structures being built today,  the Maryland Mall is built lengthwise, rather than reaching into the air. It also boasts a few unique features, such as an underground parking lot, which is the first one in the country. Developers has also included a massive 550 square metre LED screen on the front of the building, which is the largest in all of Sub-Saharan Africa. It’s estimated that the structure cost some $25 million to construct, and took roughly three years to bring to fruition, from the early investing stage through opening day. So far, it has been well-received by local residents, who have largely been treating visits as a family outing and appreciating the nice cool air conditioning.

Bookmark the Michael Chu’di Ejekam Blog

If you haven’t done so yet, please take a moment to bookmark the Michael Chu’di Ejekam Blog. We’ll be adding all kinds of articles pertaining to retail, investment, and commercial enterprise throughout Nigeria and all of Africa. From time to time, we’ll also add in insights directly from Michael Chu’di Ejekam, so expert advice and opinions on the market will always be at your fingertips.

From the Michael Chudi Ejekam Blog: 7 Nigerian Retail Industry Facts

Michael Chudi Ejekam is an expert in Nigerian retail, investing, and commercial real estate. Presently, the growth of the retail revolution has slowed some, but it is still a very strong sector that is absolutely primed to take the country to the next level in the coming years. The Michael Chudi Ejekam Blog has gathered seven interesting facts about the market that sets Nigeria apart from the rest of the world. Take a look; you’re bound to see some new information.

Facts About How Nigerians Shop

  1. Nigeria is poised for growth where supermarkets are concerned. In Kenya, around 30% of the population has shifted to formal retail supermarkets and around 60% of South Africans have as well. In Nigeria, just 2% of the population makes use of supermarkets, which likely has more to do with limited options and accessibility than anything else.
  2. Nigerians with Internet access like the convenience of shopping online. In a study performed by PayPal, 90% of people used the net to shop in Nigeria, compared to 60% in Kenya and 70% in South Africa. Experts say that brick-and-mortar retailers can boost sales by commingling their options and by offering point-of-sales devices and customer-driven kiosks on-location.

Facts About Nigerian Consumers

  1. Consumers feel optimistic about their futures- more so than those in other countries. Almost three-quarters of people surveyed say their finances will be much better off in as little as two years. When consumers in other markets were asked the same question, just 66% of South Africans agreed. Only 52% of Kenyans could say the same.
  2. Consumers are both brand and budget-conscious. One of the biggest factors for consumers in the region when considering what to purchase is still the cost. A whopping 37% prioritize this over everything else. The second major factor is quality, with 31% saying they will go for a brand that they believe to be high-quality, often choosing the same option again and again because it’s trustworthy.

Facts About the Market

  1. Nigeria is ranked one of the top countries in Africa for consumer demand potential. The country trailed close behind South Africa and Mauritius, topping Morocco by one slot and Kenya by 12.
  2. The market lacks brand diversity. One of the biggest needs uncovered by research is that very few brands are available and the majority of Nigerians are willing to try new products if they’re high-quality and have a good reputation.
  3. Retail and wholesale make up a large portion of the GDP. The market presently accounts for 16.4% of the GDP and with urbanization and the population growing, is expected to continue to be a solid investment opportunity.

Bookmark the Michael Chudi Ejekam Blog

For more interesting articles, facts, and statistics, bookmark the Michael Chudi Ejekam Blog. We’ll be updating the site regularly with fresh information and insights from Michael Chudi Ejekam, too.

From the Michael Ejekam Blog: 10 Fastest-Growing African Retailers

Being involved in commercial real estate and retail investments, Michael Ejekam is constantly watching the market to see which companies are performing well. While knowing which ones are profitable and are at the top help in knowing where to invest, watching companies as they climb the ladder is essential. This can give you keen insights into which strategies work, as well as what products consumers are demanding. The Michael Ejekam Blog has gathered information on ten of the fastest-growing companies in Africa’s retail sector, with statistics from Deloitte.

1. Choppies Enterprises Ltd

Headquartered in Botswana, Choppies is the fastest-growing retail company in Africa and also ranks 12 in terms of sales. Their sales jumped up 24.4% during the reporting period.

2. Zambeef Products Plc

Aptly named, Zambeef hails from Zambia and fell just behind Choppies in terms of growth during the same reporting period. An increase of 23% in sales brought the company to 20 on the total revenue list.

3. Mr. Price Group Ltd

The South African clothing and accessories retailer, Mr. Price, gained 15% in sales over the course of the year. This landed them in seventh place in terms of sales.

4. The Foschini Group Ltd

Another South African purveyor of apparel, The Foschini Group, took fourth on the fastest-growing list, with revenue climbing 13.3%, but topped Mr. Price in terms of revenue by one slot.

5. Woolworths

Internationally-known Woolworths took fifth place in both growth and total sales. The clothing company is headquartered in South Africa and grew by 12.7% during the reporting period.

6. Société Magasin Général SA

The only Tunisian company to make the list was Société Magasin Général SA, a general merchandise venue, showing steady gains of 11.3% and earning the 16th slot in terms of sales.

7. The SPAR Group Ltd

Though the SPAR Group of South Africa holds the fourth spot in terms of total sales, it only came in seventh place for growth. However, a comfortable 10.7% increase for such a large company is commendable.

8. Shoprite Holdings Ltd.

Another large South African company, Shoprite, came in eighth place for growth, showing a 10.5% increase. However, it beat out all other companies for sales.

9. Massmart Holdings Ltd

Massmart, headquartered in South Africa, fell just behind Shoprite on both lists; coming in number nine for growth at 9.8% and taking the second spot for sales.

10. Furnmart Ltd

The only home furnishings retailer to make the top ten is Frunmart, with 8.9% growth. The South African company comes in 23rd for overall sales.

Bookmark Michael Ejekam Blog

Looking for more information? We’re building a searchable database, packed will all kinds of information related to retail in Africa, as well as insights on the market, economy, and related industries. Feel free to browse our other blogs and bookmark Michael Ejekam Blog so that you’ll be able to see new articles easily.

Michael Chu’di Ejekam Presentation At Broll Convention

Michael Chu’di Ejekam delivered a presentation on the Broll event titled “Retail Industry: 10 Years from Now”. Michael’s presentation focuses on Nigeria’s retail development and is aptly named “The next generation of malls in Nigeria – the same? or Adapt?”. Check this slideshare for more information.

Download Michael Chu’di Ejekam Presentation HERE

Michael Chudi Ejekam Blog Presents: 5 Largest Retailers in Africa

As a thought leader in Africa’s retail revolution, Michael Chudi Ejekam constantly has eyes on how businesses throughout the region are doing. This enables him to keep a pulse on the industry and assess opportunities for growth, as well as offer advice to companies he consults, so that they may avoid the same pitfalls other enterprises have made. Like Michael Chudi Ejekam, Deloitte Global also offers insights into global matters for investors, and the group has recently published their findings for the top retailers in Africa. Here’s a look at their top five, as well as some background information on each.

1. Shoprite

Michael Ejekam’s opinions on Shoprite Holdings Ltd have been covered by the media repeatedly. The powerhouse brand topped the charts by bringing in $9.9 billion during the last reporting period.

2. Massmart

The Wal-Mart subsidiary, Massmart Holdings Ltd, has been in the news lately because it isn’t quite hitting the mark in terms of expected growth, but company officials aren’t worried at all. According to Bloomberg, Chairman Christo Wiese told an audience at the Consumer Goods Forum’s global summit  that businesses need to plan to stay for the long haul before setting up shop in Africa for this reason. CEO Doug McMillon also remains optimistic about the region. “South Africa is a terrific market and it gives you something to work with but our aspirations are for the sub-Saharan African region,” he said. The company hit $7.5 billion during the last reporting period and took second place.

3. Pick n Pay

During the same reporting period, Pick n Pay Stores Ltd reached $6.3 billion. The company recently announced that its profits were up a full 26%, and that it plans to expand. Their revamped strategy for growth includes expansion into Nigeria and opening 175 stores in various formats. The heart of it will be in Nigeria, with 51% of operations being held within the country.

4. The SPAR Group

Eyes have been on the SPAR Group Ltd, as the company has recently been working on expansion outside of Africa. However, Chief Executive Officer Graham O’Connor reassured Bloomberg in an interview, “The Southern African region is still our primary focus — we are seeing good returns in Botswana, Zambia, and Mozambique.” The company brought in $5.2 billion and came in fourth place during Deloitte’s research. At the time of the Bloomberg interview, another 5% increase in sales was noted.

5. Woolworths

Recently named “South Africa’s Most Reputable Retailer” and reporting strong gains globally. Woolworths Holdings Ltd easily made its way into the top five. With earnings of $3.8 billion, the company beat out the next in line by more than $2 billion. CEO Ian Moir gives credit to clothing sales in South Africa, which recently jumped up 11.7%.

Follow the Michael Chudi Ejekam Blog

To stay up to date on retail news, as well as industry-related info throughout Africa, please bookmark the Michael Chudi Ejekam Blog and check back frequently for updates.

Michael Chudi Ejekam Educates Public About Retail Trend Via New YouTube Channel

Expert retail developer and popular speaker, Michael Chudi Ejekam, releases new YouTube channel to share valuable insights and trends regarding retail development in Nigeria and beyond. Ejekam plans to share videos highlighting various retail establishments. To learn more visit: http://michaelchudiejekamrealestate.com/

New York, NY, United States – June 9, 2016 /PressCable/ —

Michael Chudi Ejekam, expert retail developer, shares his insights on market trends. Now investors or business owners wishing to build retail shopping malls or roll out grocery chains, have access to a new YouTube channel geared to educating about how to navigate the Nigeria market.

To Learn More Visit: http://michaelejekamblog.com/

Challenges in securing land, equity and debt financing challenges, high construction costs and dearth of real estate experience have hampered real estate development in Nigeria, Africa’s largest economy. Michael Chudi Ejekam, real estate expert, aims to help commercial businesses or potential investors navigate the inconsistencies and confusion regarding real estate developments in and around Nigeria.

“There are sizable challenges to overcome but in many ways Nigeria represents the perfect storm for real estate investment; huge population, rapid urbanization and a growing middle-class,” said Michael Chudi Ejekam, former Director of Real Estate at Actis, a London-based $7.5B private equity firm.

Ejekam aims to share expert insights into the rapid development and expansion in Nigeria to include full cycle retail investment and development: site origination, equity investment, planning approvals, development management, tenant leasing, asset management and exits. Visit the new site now: https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCRX5rr-8Jkn90JMP1…

About Michael Chudi Ejekam:

Michael Chudi Ejekam is a renowned leader in the “retail revolution”. He is a widely quoted retail thought leader, with strong local business and government relationships. Michael Chudi Ejekam served as Director Real Estate for W Africa for Actis, a $7.5B private equity firm- most active retail developer in Sub Saharan Africa (ex SA) for 7+ years. Ejekam originated $700+m in retail projects. Projects include $100m Ikeja City Mall Lagos, $120m Jabi Lake Mall Abuja and Accra Mall. Other projects include Heritage Place, Nigeria’s first green certified commercial building. Originated three upcoming Nigeria malls ranging from $150-185M each totaling over 40,000m2 each, which would be largest in the region. Additional information about Michael Chudi Ejekam can be found here: http://michaelchudiejekamrealestate.com/

For more information about us, please visit http://michaelchudiejekamretail.com/

Michael Chudi Ejekam Shares Insights on $1Billion Longer-Life Private Equity

Michael Chudi Ejekam, commercial real estate expert shares his insights on the recent Wall Street Journal article on the Atlas Partners Longer-Life Private Equity Fund which raised one billion dollars.

New York, NY, United States – May 26, 2016 /MarketersMedia/ —

Michael Chudi Ejekam, an expert private equity investor, provides insight on the emergence of longer-life private equity funds such as Altas.

In a recent article printed in the Wall Street Journal by Chris Cummings, it was reported that the emergence of longer-life private equity funds such as Altas recently hit a new benchmark by raising one billion dollars. Altas as well as other powerful groups, such as Blackstone and Carlyle, are working on similar longer-life funds. Longer-life PE funds allow managers to hold each investment for far longer than the typical 5-year hold period per investment and typical 10-year total fund life. In the Altas case, each investment can be held up to a whopping 17 years.

The typical “medium life” PE model has proven to be highly successful with attractive risk-adjusted returns, however, Michael Chudi Ejekam believes the model can be optimized, particularly in emerging market like Africa. “Following my several years of PE investing in sub-Saharan Africa, I am convinced that longer term life funds would be an improvement on the PE model for emerging markets such as Nigeria” Michael Chudi Ejekam explains.

“When a PE fund is compelled to exit after a 5-year hold period, though the returns may achieve certainly attractive 25+% gross IRR or 2.5 to 3 times multiple on equity invested, I believe tremendous additional value may be left on the table.” The expert demonstrated his point by saying, “Originating, executing and investment managing attractive investments is a challenging process – why be forced to sell/exit a highly attractive investment after only 5 years, only to be saddled with pressure to find another outstanding deal to originate to start the process over again?”

Of course, some other models have emerged to address the standard PE model challenges. For example, in the case when an arm of a PE fund family invests in greenfield deals seeking “opportunistic” higher returns, and the completed projects are transferred to “core” vehicles of the same fund family which are seeking lower, more stable, longer term returns. “It could be more powerful and efficient to have one fund vehicle simply hold the investment for the longer term”, said Michael Chudi Ejekam. This is especially important in emerging markets, where the deal process is more challenging and deals could take years to originate and close in the first place. There is also increasing investor interest and PE capital raised for Africa for example, therefore deals have become more competitive and could take years to originate and close. “After so much heavy lifting, why sell after only 5 years?” he asked. “I have been involved in a few highly successful full-cycle investments and exits – though the returns were highly rewarding and the possible carried interest/profit distributions exiting, the reality is that excessive additional upside was surrendered to the new owners.”

Charlie Munger, one of Warren Buffet’s longest serving colleagues is quoted as saying: “The ‘know-nothing’ investor should practice diversification, but it is crazy if you are an expert. The goal of investment is to find situations where it is safe not to diversify. If you only put 20% into the opportunity of a lifetime, you are not being rational.”

“Why sell after only 5 years if you are already enmeshed within a great investment?” Michael Chu’di Ejekam continued. “Part of the answer lies in the reality that PE funds need to demonstrate exits/returns to potential Limited Partners (LPs) in order to raise fresh investment funds, and LPs are accustomed to the well-defined and tested cookie-cutter PE “medium life” model.” Of course, there is a desire to exit to realize profits so that carried interest distributions can be made – the perfectly reasonable lifeblood of private equity, from which Ejekam has benefited. Thankfully, there are other acceptable avenues to achieve this objective. According to the finance whiz, longer-life PE funds would be an improvement for for emerging markets such as Africa. He thinks it would be helpful if more potential LPs bought into the concept and support the investment strategies of managers with longer-term views.

Mr. Ejekam offered a few closing remarks. “The most successful entrepreneurs and investors in emerging markets such as Africa, hold longer term views. They do not think in 5-year chunks. They think in terms of decades. This is how to generate outsized returns.”

About Michael Chudi Ejekam

Michael Chudi Ejekam is an honors graduate of the Wharton School at the University of Pennsylvania, where he earned a BSc in Economics, with a concentration in Finance. His early days were spent on Wall Street, as an investment banker for Merrill Lynch, after which he moved into private real estate investments in New York, and then onto work with Nigeria’s Actis. During his seven-year tenure as their Director Real Estate for West Africa, he became known as a leader in the “retail revolution,” helping to bring multiple million-dollar malls into underserved areas throughout sub-Saharan Africa.

For more information about us, please visit http://michaelejekamblog.com/

Michael Chudi Ejekam Comments on Resilience of Shoprite’s Earnings in Nigeria

Michael Chudi Ejekam, Expert Retail Developer, Comments on Shoprite’s strategy to be successful in Nigeria’s emerging market.

New York, NY, United states – May 3, 2016 /PressCable/ —

Chudi Ejekam, a recognized authority in retail real estate investment, comments on the resilience of Shoprite’s Nigeria earnings despite foreign exchange controls and a sharp drop in crude oil prices. Shoprite is Nigeria’s largest hypermarket by sales volume.

According to the Bloomberg article, derived from Shoprite Holdings half year financial results for the period ending Dec 31st 2015: “Nigeria showed healthy sales growth despite a slump in the price of crude oil and foreign exchange controls”, Basson said.

The retailer plans to open six Nigerian stores by December, adding to the 16 currently trading, and will also set up a distribution center in Lagos in the next couple of months to improve product availability. The Nigerian government depends on crude oil for over 70% of its revenues and over 90% of its foreign exchange earnings – therefore; the steep drop in crude oil prices had dealt a major blow to the country’s foreign reserves and had put the Naira under great pressure versus the U.S. dollar.

As Michael Chudi Ejekam explains, “as a countermeasure, beginning in June 2015, the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) introduced a ban on the ability to access foreign exchange via the official exchange rate to purchase 41 items. The CBN also introduced other measures to essentially ration foreign reserves, making it more difficult for many businesses in Nigeria to secure U.S. Dollars to import key inputs. Many retailers, especially those that were import-dependent were hit hard, and have had challenges securing the Dollars to replenish their stock. Further, the sharp drop in the parallel market Naira exchange rate, meant that certain retailers effective dollar revenues from Nigeria sales would be reduced, with many being compelled to raise their prices materially. Shoprite on the other hand, secures 76% of the items that it sells in Nigeria from local suppliers, of which 38% are manufactured locally. Therefore, Shoprite’s results have been relatively insulated from the foreign exchange shocks and Shoprite avoided material price increases. The resulting earnings, demonstrate that Shoprite’s business model is smart and defensive and well suited for an emerging market like Nigeria. Other retailers should pay close attention…and learn!”

About Michael Chudi Ejekam

Michael Chudi Ejekam is a renowned leader in the “retail revolution”. He is a widely quoted retail thought leader, with strong local business and government relationships. Michael Chudi Ejekam served as Director Real Estate for W Africa for Actis, a $7.5 B private equity firm- most active retail developer in Sub-Saharan Africa (ex SA) for 7+ years. Ejekam originated $700+M in retail projects. Projects include $100MIkeja City Mall Lagos, $120M Jabi Lake Mall Abuja and Accra Mall. Other projects include Heritage Place, Nigeria’s first green certified commercial building. Originated three upcoming Nigeria malls ranging from $150-185M each totaling over 40,000m2 each, which would be largest in the region.

Michael Chudi Ejekam started his career on Wall Street, as an investment banker at Merrill Lynch in New York.

He graduated with Honors from the Wharton School, University of Pennsylvania, with BSc in Economics with a Concentration in Finance. He received the Howard E Mitchell Award for academic excellence and extracurricular contributions. Learn more about Michael Chudi Ejekam here.

For more information about us, please visit https://www.linkedin.com/in/michael-chu-di-ejekam-9928307

Michael Chudi Ejekam, Retail Developer, Extols Future of Pick N Pay in Nigeria

Expert retail developer, Chu’di Ejekam, praises the possibility of Pick N Pay and the future of the retail market in Nigeria and Sub Saharan Africa.

New York, NY, United States – April 28, 2016 /PressCable/ —

Michael Chudi Ejekam, a recognized authority in retail real estate development, discusses a recent article about the planned entry of a major grocery chain into Nigeria and the problems faced by prior attempts by other retailers.

Ejekam says, “Though some retailers have struggled and exited the Nigeria market, those with the appropriate business models can survive and thrive. In many respects, Nigeria represents the perfect storm for retail as well as real estate investment; Large and growing population of 180 million, burgeoning middle class, rapid urbanization, high growth in household consumption. The same positive trend applies to many markets in Sub-Saharan Africa. Nigeria’s population is forecast to grow to 400 million population by 2050 in a land mass about 30% larger than the US state of Texas.”

Nigeria is the largest retail market in Africa with nearly $200 Billion annual total retail sales forecast for 2016. Only 5% of groceries sales, for example, is via formal retail channels. Kenya, in contrast, has 30% formal penetration.

Ejekam continued to say, “Despite huge demand versus supply imbalance for Nigeria retail; retailers struggle to scale. Retail scalability is limited due to challenges in securing land, high construction costs, difficulty in securing equity and debt financing, high rental rates, the dearth of development expertise, limited pool of tenants with appropriate business models for the country”.

The impact of the underdevelopment of retail is felt by the general population. High food prices is a major problem: Approximately 60% of Nigerian household expenditure is devoted to food consumed at home vs. 6.5% in the USA.

Nigeria is merely at the first step of retail growth (development, leading to the next stage of acceleration and then consolidation thereafter). Despite the short-term challenges in the Nigeria market including currency, retailers entering or operating with the correct business models will reap the rewards for decades to come.

About Michael Chudi Ejekam

Michael Chudi Ejekam is a renowned leader in the “retail revolution”. He is a widely quoted retail thought leader, with strong local business and government relationships. Michael Chudi Ejekam served as Director Real Estate for W Africa for Actis, a $7.5 Billion private equity firm- most active retail developer in Sub-Saharan Africa (ex SA) for 7+ years. Ejekam originated $700+ Million in retail projects. Projects include $100 Million Ikeja City Mall Lagos, $120 Million Jabi Lake Mall Abuja and Accra Mall. Other projects include Heritage Place, Nigeria’s first green certified commercial building. Originated three upcoming Nigeria malls ranging from $150-185 Million each totaling over 40,000m2 each, which would be largest in the region. Michael Chudi Ejekam started his career on Wall Street, as an investment banker at Merrill Lynch in New York.

He graduated with Honors from the Wharton School, University of Pennsylvania, with BSc in Economics with a Concentration in Finance. He received the Howard E Mitchell Award for academic excellence and extracurricular contributions. Learn more about Michael Chudi Ejekam here.

For more information about us, please visit https://www.linkedin.com/in/michael-chu-di-ejekam-9928307