Dr Oluleye Adigun, a US-based Nigerian billionaire, has revealed ongoing effort to invest three billion naira ($6.8million) in Fidelity Bank through shares acquisition.
Adigun told the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) in a telephone interview, on Wednesday, that the acquisition was part of his planned investment in the Nigerian economy, adding that the process of buying Fidelity bank was almost done, attributing the little delay to the COVID-19 pandemic.
“The Fidelity bank purchase is almost done. COVID-19 delayed the process a little due to everything closing down, but the process just picked up again. I was told I have to open a bank account and will need BVN. I am planning to come to Nigeria to do that as soon as possible.
NAN reports that the Osun State-born billionaire is the owner and Chief Operating Officer of Golden Glades Treatment Center, as well as Adigun Investment Group, with stakes in nine companies operating in commercial real estate, several e-commerce companies. as well as wind and solar energy.
Others are aviation, with four private planes, a technology company, which owns computer software/applications, and six clinics in the healthcare industry.
“Mr. Peter Aletor, Managing Director for Apel Asset Limited, and a friend, Mr Tosin Afolabi, have been very helpful on it. Afolabi will be partner in my bank venture in Nigeria with small share,” he said of his foray into the Nigerian economy.
Adigun expressed willingness to bring his airline company, healthcare, technology as well as solar and wind energy to Nigeria in the future.
“I am interested in investing in Nigeria because it’s my father land. I believe there has to be a way of doing something in my own country and be successful in it.
“I have touched almost every industry here in the US and very successful in it. I have done business with people in other countries like South African, Zimbabwe, Jamaica and Europe. I want to do same in my own country,” he said.
He added: “The Nigerian economy has great potentials. Nigeria has everything to be giant in the world. We have the smartest people in Nigeria.
“With the right people, with great mind and good intentions, Nigeria can be like US and other thriving countries. I need to build my own too. Nigeria is my home regardless of what I have here in US.”
He narrated how his previous efforts to purchase failing Polaris Bank in Nigeria was thwarted, on the grounds that he was not known in Nigeria and being an investor from Southern Nigeria.
Adigun described the experience as very horrible, saying that the task of building a greater Nigeria was a collective responsibility, which must be devoid of ethnic sentiment.
“When I decided to start investing in the Nigerian economy, I first heard of Polaris Bank. So I decided to buy a failing bank and Polaris came up through my connections with CBN.
“I was connected to Mr. Peter Aletor who is coordinating with AMCO in buying 80 percent shares of Polaris bank and save it from closing. I was later informed by Mr. Peter that Polaris board members met and decided that they are not selling control of the bank to a Southerner,” he said.
He said it was Aletor who later told him to buy small shares from other reputable banks like Guaranty Trust Bank or Fidelity Bank, and this prompted his decision to buy enough shares from Fidelity bank to become a board member.