Categories
Features

How I Make Money From Being A Talkative

Every week, we talk to Nigerians around the world about money and how they make it.

This week features media personality and “Talk Queen”, Seun. She speaks about her journey into media, and how she makes her earnings from being “talkative.” She also lets us into her plans for the future and how she hopes to contribute to society.

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Halo Invest gives you access to the best financial insights, insider tips, and tools to help you improve your relationship with money.

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Please introduce yourself

My name is Seun Bankole. I am a tv presenter, an event host/planner, a wedding MC, a digital marketer, a social media manager, and a brand influencer. Generally, you can call me a talkative. LOL

Wow, this is quite a lot for one person…

LOL, it is not quite a lot o! Some people do many things that aren’t connected and handle it just fine, but everything I do is connected in some way. I am even just getting started!

Omo!

How did all of these begin?

Well, I have always been a fan of talking, so it was natural for me to want to study Mass Communication but my parents wanted Law, so I applied for Law at the University of Lagos (UNILAG) after secondary school. At the time, I wasn’t 16, and UNILAG had a clause where people under 16 weren’t admitted into the school, so I waited another year and wrote JAMB. I selected Obafemi Awolowo University (OAU) and Osun State University (UNIOSUN). I chose Law and English & International studies, respectively. 

OAU’s admission was taking forever, so I resumed UNIOSUN. However, when I finally got admitted into OAU, I left UNIOSUN immediately for History and International Relations at OAU as that was what I got in place of Law.

You know when you have a passion for something, but there’s no push or platform? That was what delayed my foray into media when I finally resumed OAU.

I applied to OAU’s radio station, Great FM; however, my on-air schedules clashed too often with my classes, so I gave up. I was very active with the drama department; that was where I used my talents.

Interesting…

After I graduated, I went to my National Youth Service Corp (NYSC), where I joined OBS. Before that, I got the opportunity to intern at TVC’s Max FM for about six months.

It was an unpaid internship but the experience was wholesome. After the internship, I was posted to Lagos camp for NYSC, and maybe because of how well I performed as an intern, I got another opportunity to work at TVC Entertainment as a corps member where I got paid ₦20,000 alongside the ₦19,000 youth service fees paid by the government. I was living with my parents at the time so I could be consistent with saving N10,000 every month.

During my service year, I volunteered to work at Mirabel Radio as an entertainment presenter. It is the radio arm of Mirabel Centre (Partnership for Justice) where they work to get justice for victims of rape and gender-based violence. Simultaneously, I was a co-host on Eko Corpers Diary on Eko FM during CDS.

I hoped TVC would retain me, and by the grace of God, they did. In January 2020, I transitioned into a full-time staff, working in the Public Relations/Online department as a social media executive. That was when I started to enjoy the full benefits of a gainfully employed young Nigerian. However, in February 2021, an opportunity came for me to join News Central TV and I made the difficult decision of leaving TVC after two and a half years.

I also had my post-graduate training at the Nigerian Institute of Journalism. All of these prepared me for my role as a TV presenter at News Central.

Whilst in school, I had an issue with a borrowed course (my second semester), which meant I had an extra year. I started working as an MC this year. I offered my services for free for about six months to a year before I got my first paid gig.

So, you said it’s not a lot, but how do you do everything you do without breaking a sweat?

I always know my timetable ahead, so I know what jobs to take or not. Here’s how it works: I have a 9 – 5, which is my primary job. Thankfully, I have a colleague with whom I share schedules; we created a plan that works for both of us; my job is that flexible. Everything is fine and dandy so long the work gets done.

It’s 2022. Every company has to know that the average employee takes on side hustles (not with the competitor, obviously). So, I make sure I know in advance what I have to do. I know my calendar ahead of time, but if anything comes up at the last minute, I talk to my colleague.

Whatever the case, I ensure that my work doesn’t suffer. The quality of what I churn out must remain top-notch.

Amazing! 

What is your creative process?

At the risk of sounding like I’m capping, sometimes, it comes to me in a dream. Sometimes, when I’m taking a leak or when in traffic. Other times, I get ideas from stuff I watch from creators I admire online. I have noticed that ideas come easily when I am not actively working, as I get very overwhelmed when there’s pressure to deliver.

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Let’s talk finances! What was your idea about money while growing up, and what has changed now that you’re an adult?

My family is very prudent. When my siblings and I were younger, my parents could eat several pieces of meat but would give my three sisters and me one piece to share. It was strange, but it happened for a long time. Not once in that period did it occur to me to steal; I could cheat my sisters and take more significant portions, LOL, but I would not steal. 

As we grew older, they started giving us two pieces of fish to share among ourselves. Now that we are much older, they let us serve ourselves, and if I want, I could take as many as three pieces of meat, and no one will beat me. LOL 

I picked up my parents’ prudence, and it helped me when I was in Uni; I didn’t feel the pressure to use the latest things, I was always content with what I had and learnt to optimise whatever I had, especially as, for a long time, I was financially dependent on my parents.

During one of the strikes in school, I learnt how to bake cakes, where I made little money and bought a few things I needed. It was then I understood what it meant to make your own money. 

When I started my internship, I could ask my parents if I needed anything, as I wasn’t earning money. If they could afford it, they would give it to me readily. I didn’t wear the trendiest stuff, but I always looked clean and presentable.

When I was a corps member earning ₦39,000, I would save ₦10,000 each month. At the end of my service year, I got myself a phone with my funds for the first time, and it was an iPhone; it felt terrific.

LOL  

I then increased my savings to ₦40,000 per month when I started earning more. The following year, I raised my savings to ₦50,000. I save it with my father; he runs a platform like a microfinance bank. 

I say all these to say that I know a lot about delaying gratification and not holding back from spoiling myself when it’s time to spend. The idea of spending everything and then “depending on God” when it’s all spent doesn’t sit well with me. I always think about tomorrow.

Do you suspect you’re that way because you’re the first child?

Oh, yes! I think my parents took their time to instil their values in me. I often got disciplined way more than my younger siblings. 

What would you want it to be if you had a financial superpower?

The ability to ensure that every single person, young and old, employed or unemployed, has money to cover their needs and then some. Such that they don’t need to look up to criminals or become criminals themselves just to get money.

What would you consider a financial red flag?

Oh, it has to be an inability to save or invest. If you always spend as it comes and you always have to beg for loans, I find it difficult to be friends with such a person.

Finally, where do you see yourself going as regards your career?

With my background and basic knowledge in events, decorating & planning, baking, and tailoring, I see myself owning an estate. A place that every single bride can walk into and all her event needs are met. There would be wedding planners, bakers, caterers, rental services, fashion designers, clothing material vendors, jewellery vendors, e.t.c. All these vendors will have offices in that estate. Even more? A variety of halls (small and big), tents, and open areas will be in the exact location.

I’d also like to own a vocational institute where young people can come to learn when they are not in school for one reason or another.

Regarding my media personality career, I love Tomike Adeoye, Kiekie and Nancy Isime. These people do practically the same jobs but in distinct ways. They deeply inspire me, and I hope to build my media career to the point where I do not have to do a 9 – 5 for the rest of my life.

That brings us to the end of the interview. Thank you so much, Seun for your time!

You are welcome! I had a great time.

Same!

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Follow us on Instagram and Twitter to get information and fun tips to help you on your journey to financial security.

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You can also reach out to us at social@haloasset.ng if you would like to share your story too.

Categories
Quizzes & Trivia

Quiz: How well do you know about investments?

We have a new quiz for you and we will be testing your basic knowledge of investments! Take this test here:

These quiz questions were gotten from Quizziz.

Check out more of our other fun and exciting quizzes here!

Don’t forget to follow us on all our social media platforms for useful tips on how to build wealth. Find links here.

Categories
Features LifeStyle

Spending Guilt: “It’s my money. Why do I feel bad when I spend it?”

Do you work hard to make money, to take care of your needs and then some, but have nagging feelings of guilt or feel a certain way whenever you spend that money? Then you should read this!

If it is any form of consolation, you should know that this experience is not unique to you. A quick Google search on ‘spending guilt’ would give you an insight into how prevalent this feeling is. However, the fact that it is common does not mean it is healthy.

Money is a tool and you should see it as such.

The first step in identifying the origin of your spending guilt is examining why you have negative feelings about money, a tool available to you. 

Feelings of guilt are, however, not always unwarranted. An example of warranted spending guilt is when you constantly aren’t able to achieve your saving goals and/or are in debt. 

Note: Debt in itself is not bad. It is only an issue when it is poorly handled – what answers do you have to the questions about how and why you are in debt and whether or not you have a repayment plan.

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Money & Emotions

Money plays a crucial role in the quality of our lives – whether or not we are willing to admit it. So, it is no surprise that the presence or lack of money has an impact on human emotions. 

Research has shown that a person’s feelings about money (positive or negative), more often than not, stem from childhood experiences. For instance, if you grew up in a family that wasn’t well-to-do, where you were often on a strict budget, your guilt about spending could result from a scarcity mindset. What is at play here is called cognitive dissonance.

Cognitive dissonance in this context is when positive feelings about being financially comfortable conflict with negative ones about spending this money on what you suspect might not be a necessity.

How to navigate your spending guilt: what to do when this feeling rears its head

Warranted or unwarranted, dealing with spending guilt will prove impossible if you have not identified its origins. Identifying the cause is the first and most crucial step. Once this is done, it is easier to make concrete plans to overcome it. You could be in that position for varying reasons, from faulty prioritisation to a lack of proper planning.

1. Track your spending:

This is a necessary step toward figuring out if you have indeed been overspending or spending on nonnecessities. It will also help you pinpoint your spending triggers (you will notice your spending patterns).

For instance, if you have been spending lots of money on snacks and take-out, even with enough food at home, it could be a result of boredom, stress, peckishness, or the feeling that you have more than enough money to spend. Any of these could be your spending trigger, and a healthy way to ensure these are not the reasons to spend too much is to find better ways to deal with them.

Tips on how to deal with these triggers:

● Boredom – Indulge in activities you enjoy, such as reading, seeing a movie, speaking to friends and family, e.t.c.

● Stress – Remove yourself from what is causing your stress, and find ways to relax and destress. Ways you can destress include resting, taking naps, going on short walks, e.t.c

● Peckishness – Factor snacks into your monthly budget so that you don’t find yourself spending the money allocated to other things.

● The feeling that you have more than enough money to spend – Take the excess money and put it into your savings, emergency fund, fixed deposit, or invest it.

NB– there is nothing wrong with having excess money, it is to your advantage to put most of it into things that work for you in the long run.

There are more spending triggers than the ones listed above, but these are more common.

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2. Prioritize and Plan:

It is advantageous to arrange your needs and wants in order of priority. Write down your needs (non-negotiables) and wants (bear in mind that these wants should be listed out on a scale of preference). 

The 50/30/20 plan is a great budgeting template; 50% for your needs, 30% for your wants, and you save/invest 20%. It is okay to swap the percentage allocation of your savings and wants, it depends on what your income is.

Important info: Ensure your debts are factored into the 50% because they are non-negotiable. How do you do this? Review your debts, create actionable repayment plans, and stick to them.
3. Mindset shift:

It is important to get comfortable with the idea that spending money on something you enjoy is not a bad thing. As long as your monthly budget, savings, and investments are not affected, and what you are spending on is not something detrimental to you, then, by all means, enjoy! 

Ensure you factor in enjoyment funds into your monthly budget. This falls under your 30%. You should be able to enjoy the money you earn.

4. Finally, let go of the need to see perfection as regards your finances. If you are a perfectionist, there are high chances not smashing your goals will continually lead to feelings of guilt. A few slip-ups now and then might get you in your feelings, but do not dwell on them. Rather, assess the progress you have made, accept that you are doing your best, and be grateful for your achievements.

In a nutshell, spending guilt is a common occurrence; but it gets easier to deal with once you can identify the cause. Also, do not forget to get comfortable with enjoying the money you worked hard for; it is yours! 

We hope you enjoyed reading this. If you have any thoughts or feedback, feel free to let us know in the comments, we love to read them and interact with you.

Categories
Quizzes & Trivia

Finance trivia: How much do you know?

Answer these simple finance trivia questions from beginning to end, and let’s see if you are a money guru or not.

Check out more of our other fun and exciting quizzes here!

Don’t forget to follow us on all our social media platforms for useful tips on how to build wealth. Find links here.

Categories
Features

How I handle being both an IP lawyer and a shoe-maker.

Every week, we talk to Nigerians around the world about money and how they make it.

This week features Samuel, a Lawyer, shoemaker and contract advisor. We talk about his career as an IP lawyer, and how he balances that with his shoe-making business.

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Could you please tell me about yourself and what you do?

My name is Samuel Abu. I’m a lawyer, and I work as a shoemaker and a contract advisor on the side. These are the things I do to make money.

What exactly do you do as a lawyer?

My interests are in intellectual property (IP) and data protection, so I am pretty much a lawyer in the tech space. I work with tech guys: I play an advisory role on the IP rights of their products, contracts, contract relationships with other tech companies, getting licenses to operate within the regulated spaces in Nigeria, and so forth.

That sounds interesting. Did you always want to be a lawyer?

When I became old enough to think of what I wanted to do, the first thing I wanted to be was a pilot. LOL

However, since my junior secondary school years, I made up my mind to study law. Although, at the time, for me, it just seemed like one of those prestigious professions.

So, what is your typical day as an IP Lawyer?

First off: Coffee! LOL. I require coffee before I resume work. 

You know, tech guys are always in a rush; They have an idea and want the product to be out immediately. However, they can not just jump into making the product without signing a contract – there is no telling what CBN or any other party will do. They want to “jump on a call” where they want explanations about what needs to be in place.

Now imagine this with three to five clients, keeping in mind that each agreement is peculiar. 

A good lawyer does not know every law, even though he knows a substantial part of it; a good lawyer knows where to find the law. So, before answering their questions on what needs to be in place, you have to read up and be on your toes.

You are a lawyer and a shoemaker. That’s an interesting pair. How did you start shoemaking?

It started in SS1. There was a skills acquisition program my mum was a part of (she is into the design and pattern drafting space). I attended it, learnt and made a few footwear; I started with slippers, graduated to sandals, and then started making shoes. Then I thought to myself, “yes, I am going to do this.” 

Another influencing factor was the time I went to Yaba to get shoes: I got them at a low cost, and it seemed like a good bargain for what I assumed was great quality. But to my surprise, two months in, they were worn out! That vexed me, and I thought, “you know what? forget this. I’ll just make my own”. However, I also knew that I would be practising law. 

I love making shoes, but knowing there would hardly be any time for it, it made sense to partner with trusted people to make them. They incorporate my ingenuity without sacrificing the quality.

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Alright, let’s dive into your finances. What was your idea of money growing up, and how has it changed now that you’re an adult?

I have always considered money as something good to have, and something I always want to have. My family was not the richest, but we were quite comfortable. If I needed money, I could walk up to my parents and ask. My moral compass was not defined by money or the lack of it. 

Now that I’m older, I hold the same views. Money should not define your values or relationships. Money is a commodity we work for and should eventually work for us. It should not push you to compromise on your values and integrity.

How would you describe your money habits?

With my spending, I go after the necessities. More often than not, I separate my wants from my needs, and I make sure that sometimes, I reward myself for hard work. From my monthly income, I have a budget for entertainment. I also budget for savings and investments – for me, it’s not about how small it is, but the consistency.

I make sure to pay my tithes. I can do that consistently because I have a rationale; if I can not manage 90% of that income, it’s a shame because 10% won’t make much of a difference.

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If you were to pick a financial superpower, what would it be?

Do you know those IG videos where people snap their fingers and their location changes? I want that with money. I want to snap my fingers and have like $15,000. It’ll be more interesting with the Infinity Gauntlet. LOL.

What would you consider a financial red flag?

That would have to be people spending their money on things they don’t need. It is more absurd when the value of what you’re buying is way above what you earn. It is pointless because the world is constantly evolving, and new stuff always emerge.      

It’s good to spoil yourself, but continuously spending your money on things you don’t need is a red flag.

Another sect is people who spend on things to give a false image of high status. I wish they understood that people do not care that much. Your focus should be more on how to increase your financial power instead of trying to convince people of the financial power you don’t have.

That makes a lot of sense. Finally, what advice would you give budding lawyers who have an interest in IP law?

Follow your passion! 

If you are really curious about it, you should read up because IP is wide. There is a vast ocean of knowledge to explore. Go to a place where they practice whatever branch of law you are interested in, and do not hold back; learn as much as you can. It’s a journey you get better at. 

Also, it’s never too early to start learning about what you want to practice, even if you are in your first year. You then build up your interest, as well as your wealth of knowledge. Your brain then begins to get into the nuanced conversations of the practice, and your perspective begins to change. This happens as a result of the knowledge you have gathered over time. 

Alright. Have you ever considered being a mentor to people with an interest in IP law?

Hmm…

I’m not the smartest, but I believe I’m realistic. So yeah, I could answer any question around these and feel free to reach me @thebeanielawyer or on LinkedIn. LOL. Just kidding, Twitter is fine.

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You can reach out to us at social@haloasset.ng if you would like to share your story too.

Categories
Quizzes & Trivia

How deep is your love for money?

We are going to guess just how deep your love for money is by your choices in this short but fun quiz.

Check out more of our other fun and exciting quizzes here!

Don’t forget to follow us on all our social media platforms for useful tips on how to build wealth. Find links here.

Categories
Features LifeStyle

Communities: the future of financial services & financial success

The average person is a product of their socialization, so it makes sense that being part of a community is central to the human experience. The Igbo term, Igwebuike (literally, there is strength in numbers) and the Zulu concept of Ubuntu (literally, I am because you are) are just two examples of how Africans have traditionally valued the concept of community. 

Communities provide connection, support and a sense of belonging that has been proven to strengthen our individual resilience. Members of a strong community recognise, and value, their interdependence. For the community to thrive, the individuals must do their part.

The foundation of any community is trust. Nigerians have long leveraged this trust to create wealth; from traditional savings schemes like ajo to investment clubs, to churches that provide low/no interest loans to their congregation. Even market women will pool resources to help a new member buy her first stock. Community members give because they know, and trust, the people they are giving to… and are confident that when their turn comes, their community will not let them down.

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Why communities?

Trust is also the bedrock of a relationship with a financial institution. Halo Financial Services is leveraging the trust that already exists within a community to help more people start and sustain their journey to financial freedom.

We use technology to make it easier, and more rewarding for community members to build wealth together. Halo offers savings, investment, credit, and other financial services as a service to communities; so that their members can more easily achieve their personal financial goals.

Halo’s focus on communities is a strategic decision which benefits the company, the community, and the individual members. Approaching communities, rather than individuals, will enable us to scale faster and broaden our impact.

Communities benefit from a dynamic revenue share arrangement and more engaged membership. Community members can use the size of their collective to get higher returns for each individual; interest rates are calculated on the value of the entire community’s portfolio.

How will they engage with us?

Part of our approach is to meet customers where they are. So, we offer communities (and their members) multiple ways to engage with us. For the digitally confident, who prefer self-service, we offer both a web and a mobile app. Communities can choose to have their own app – built and managed by Halo but branded to the community. They can also host their community in a branded environment on the Halo app.

For the informal market, who prefer to deal face to face, we offer access to our full suite of products via a nationwide agent network. For more affluent customers with more complex financial needs, we offer financial advisory and portfolio management.

In conclusion

The fintech landscape is increasingly competitive, and Halo’s community-based approach is a real differentiator and a valuable advantage. It is our mission to help as many Nigerians as possible build and sustain wealth. Connecting communities to high-quality savings and investments, and providing them with affordable, accessible financial management tools is how we plan to do it.

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Categories
Money Notes

Money Notes #31 – The Bi-Weekly Newsletter from Halo Invest

Two notes in one month. Only the most useful, relevant and practical entries on finance and money. If you like money notes #31, invite your friends to subscribe here.

Hello, 
I trust you are doing okay. We’re nearing the end of the first half of 2022, and I’m curious, how does that make you feel? Good? Anxious? Indifferent?

If you feel anxious or despondent that you don’t seem to have your finances in check yet, here’s some encouragement for you: We have six months left in the year. That’s ample time for you to give your finances some sort of structure. I believe in you!

If you feel indifferent, um… I’m not sure that’s a great place to be. A quote by poet, Ha Jin reads “Indifference is the strongest contempt”, and contempt is not what you should feel about your finances. I think a great place to start in working through those feelings is figuring out why you feel that way in the first place, and you can work your way out from there. 

If you feel great, that’s awesome! I am glad you are making financial decisions you are proud of. You should know, however, that the journey to wealth creation is a continuous one. You should constantly look out for ways you can work towards your financial goals more efficiently.

However you feel, I have included a few resources to help you out in the For You section, be sure to look through them.🤗

Hot Topic in Finance 

Industry conversations we think you should know.

Crypto Crash

It’s no news that the crypto market seems to be going through a meltdown. Social media is rife with different reactions to the news as this could present opportunities or dire consequences. It appears to be more of the latter than the former for many people. What exactly is happening? Is this an opportunity you should look into? Here is what experts are saying.

For You

Fun, useful stuff you will absolutely love!

  1. Just in case you aren’t already aware of what we do at Halo Financial services, here is an article about who we are, what we offer, and what you stand to gain.
  2.  As we draw close to the end of the first half of the year, you should run a finance health check. Here is how. If you’re up for it, we even have a fun makeshift finance health check quiz, you should check out.
  3. Since we relaunched our feature articles, we have had two more features we think would interest you. One is on Emmanuel Faith, an HR personnel, poet, and creative writer. He let us in on how he transitioned into HR from a background in Economics. The other is on Tour guide/Curator and Restaurateur, Nancy Nsofor. She spoke to us about building a successful career in Tourism and Hospitality in Nigeria’s challenging tourism climate.
  4. If you are looking for ways to earn more whilst doing what you love, see this article.

If you found money notes #31 helpful, follow us on InstagramTwitterFacebook, and LinkedIn, and check our Blog for more frequent updates, tips, and tools to help you improve your relationship with money.


 

Categories
Features Quizzes & Trivia

Halo Financial Services: An Introduction

Halo Financial Services offers banking, investment, and other financial services as a service to formal and informal communities. This enables communities to offer their members the products and tools necessary to plan, save, and invest to meet their financial goals.

Halo defines a community as any group of people with defined membership and identifiable leadership. This includes but is not restricted to; professional or trade associations, cooperatives, social clubs, and unions.

Our approach

1. Democratizing access:

We’ll be eliminating financial jargon and using simple language, so no one feels left out of financial conversations. We also meet people where they are, so you can engage with us however you feel most comfortable. If you’re techy, there’s an app; if you like face-to-face, we have a nationwide agent network.

2. Digital distribution:

We are a fully digital business; even our physical touchpoints are digitally enabled. We are using technology to make wealth creation easier, more accessible, more intelligent, more innovative, and more enjoyable. 

3. Community collaboration:

We have platforms and tools to help communities – regardless of size and type, collaborate more effectively and build wealth together.

4. Building trust through networks:

We leverage relationships within existing networks and drive trust through ratings and other social-proofing tools.

What makes Halo different from the competition?

We refer to this as the Halo Effect; we are one of the few companies in Nigeria with both an asset management and a microfinance bank license.

Halo Financial Services has two fully licensed companies, Halo Asset Management Ltd and Halo Microfinance Bank (formerly Enrich Microfinance Bank). With them, we can offer a full spectrum of financial services from basic banking to sophisticated investments.

In addition, our in-house wealth experts provide advisory support for our high-end customers. They also contribute to financial literacy content for our other customers.

Our Services

  • Banking: bank account, payments, savings, credit (loans & credit cards).
  • Investments: mutual funds, private funds, local & international equity and bonds, and more.
  • Sharia-compliant products: non-interest-bearing savings and investment products that are fully compliant with Islamic law.
  • Other financial services: insurance (through partnerships), financial advisory, and portfolio management.

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Our Channels

We want to serve as many people as possible, so we offer multi-platform, multi-channel access:

  1.  Invest: app-based access to comprehensive savings, investment, and credit products for communities with digitally confident members.
  2.  Direct: access to our full suite of products and services via a nationwide agent network. This is for communities with informal sector membership.
  3. Wealth: Active portfolio management for communities with more affluent and financially sophisticated members.

Communities also have several ways to engage with Halo:

  • White-labelling: mobile and/or web app, which will be fully branded for your community and managed by us.
  • Hosted communities: fully-branded environments within the Halo app, with administrative controls for community managers.
  • Single feature integration: API integration of specific functionalities into existing apps

What do Communities stand to gain from Halo Financial Services?

With Halo, communities of every size and type will benefit from:

  1. Mouth-watering incentives: communities will earn a percentage of Halo’s revenue from their members’ total activity, forever. So, everybody wins. (NOTE: revenue share does not come from members’ principal or earned interest).
  2. Stronger bonds: relationships between community members will improve as they reap the rewards of group participation and collaboration. Loyalty to the community will also improve as they build prosperity together.

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Follow us on Instagram and Twitter to get information and fun tips to help you on your journey to financial security.

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How I Found My Niche In Nigeria’s Tourism Industry

Every week, we talk to Nigerians around the world about money and how they make it.

This week features Nancy, a tour guide, tour curator and restaurateur. We talk about how she started her career in tourism and the challenges and opportunities of the tourism industry in Nigeria. She also gives us a glimpse into what her money habits look like.

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Could you please tell me about yourself and what you do?

My name is Nancy Nsofor, and I work in tourism and hospitality. I own two brands: Waka Nation and Pasta zone, with which I help curate travel experiences and help people satisfy all their food cravings. So, I am a professional tour guide, tour curator and restaurateur. 

Interesting! Why tourism, and what made you decide that it was what you wanted to do as a career?

It was quite coincidental. I wanted to be a nurse, but my efforts toward that were not yielding results. So. I applied to the National Open University to study Hospitality Management without a prior understanding of what it entailed – I thought it had to do with hospitality administration in hospitals, LOL

However, in the second semester of my 100L, we began to diversify into specialities, and I opted for Hospitality and Tourism studies. At that point. I fell in love with the course; it became interesting as I already had a flair for travelling, meeting and coordinating people.

Although it was coincidental; now, I do not see myself doing anything else; I find fulfilment in doing this.

What are the challenges you experience in Nigeria’s tourism industry?

I find convincing Nigerians to patronize domestic travels within the country quite challenging.

International tourism comprises inbound and outbound tourism. You will find that more often than not, Nigerians prefer outbound tours because of issues with security and ignorance of the treasures in their ‘backyard’.

So, we are dealing with two crucial subjects; Insecurity and Ignorance.

What do you wish was better as regards the industry?

I have had the opportunity to speak to both federal and state officials, and I found that they were not too knowledgeable about the possible impacts of tourism on the country’s economy.

So, I believe it would help to have government officials who are knowledgeable and passionate about Nigeria’s tourism industry and how the industry could help grow Nigeria’s GDP. 

I dare claim that tourism could be a significant source of revenue for Nigeria; we have nothing short of ten tourist spots in each of Nigeria’s 36 states. 

Can you even imagine what this could mean for us? Most especially with how we already have expatriates trooping in whenever we have festivals such as the Olojo festival, Osun-Oshogbo festival, e.t.c?

An understanding of branding concerning Nigeria’s tourism industry is fundamental; infrastructures such as good road networks, proper security and what have you are necessities.

I feel the same way and hold similar opinions about the food industry in Nigeria; the Agricultural sector needs proper structuring.

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You wear many hats; you do different things to make money, it must not be easy. How do you handle it all? 

Well, for me, it helped that I read many books on financial literacy. At the risk of sounding cliche, I started with Rich Dad, Poor Dad and The Richest Man in Babylon, LOL. 

Those books changed my ideologies about money and contributed to how I figured out my first stream of income.

Many people assume I am doing too much; I disagree because I work in just one industry: Tourism and Hospitality management.

Under hospitality, I work as a Restaurateur; I run a restaurant and consult. I run a niched market with my food and beverage brand; people think of my brand, and Pasta comes to mind before anything else. 

The beverage we produce is healthy; we make what we locally refer to as Zobo. I started that during the lockdown phase of the pandemic when the tourism industry experienced a meltdown.

So, it might appear that many things are happening at once, but it’s still the same goal, mission, vision and purpose driving me. As a full-fledged food and beverage company, we are now expanding into having our own cocktail bar and handling event catering.

Taking it one step at a time helps me with stability. So, every year, I focus on one thing I want to achieve in my food or tourism business. I am very intentional; my head is not all over the place.

I love that.
Let’s talk finances. What do your money habits look like?

Over the years, I’ve developed good money habits. As a small business owner, I had to learn rudimentary money-related terms such as gross and net profit, pricing, fixed and operational costs, e.t.c.

I make sure I save. One out of my three streams of income caters to my personal needs. Another, I allocate to taking care of my family’s needs. The major one goes straight to fixed deposit savings. I don’t touch it. 

The knowledge I have accrued over the years has helped me control my spending. I don’t buy what I don’t need – I ask myself three times if I actually need that thing, LOL. If there’s anything that takes most of my money, it would be food. I don’t do any impulse buying.

Hm, what was your relationship with money while growing up?

As a child, my mum made sure we understood what money was – although I didn’t particularly enjoy saving in piggy banks, kolo, because it was a case of “if you need money, just ask.”

However, with the advent of fintech companies, my ideologies about saving have changed, as I now save with a purpose. 

So, what specific thing made you change how you see money?

One of the things that caused me to see money differently was a previous relationship. My ex was very instrumental in my journey into financial literacy. He helped me see money in a very simple, practical way, especially regarding financial independence. I saw the way he was frugal with money, and that is what sparked my interest.

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What do you wish more people knew about money?

I constantly emphasise to my mentees and people in my accountability groups that money comes and goes. It’s not something you “hold tightly to your chest”, LOL. To make money is easy; to lose money is easy.

Some people erroneously think, “If I have one million naira today, all my money problems would be solved.” No! That one million naira might solve just the immediate problems, but you’d be surprised at the kind of problems the next 24 hours can bring.

That’s why I encourage people to have more than one income stream. I am ready to do anything to make money, so long it is not illegal or immoral. I run my businesses, conduct training, and coordinate events. All these keep me balanced, and the pressure of my basic needs is not one income stream.

For example, you cannot possibly base your survival on income from something as volatile as cryptocurrency. Something like that should be a long-term investment, not to satisfy short-term goals.

That is profound. What do you consider a financial red flag?

Wow. That has to be covetousness and lavish spending. That money comes and goes is not a reason to be careless with it.

This has been so interesting! I almost do not want it to end. LOL.
Tell us. Is there anything exciting you are working on?

Yes! As I mentioned, I am building and expanding my food and beverage company: Pasta Zone. I am exploring various ways the brand can bring in more revenue: cocktail mixology, bartending, event catering, e.t.c.

On the tourism side, we are maintaining that culture of excellence. Everything I’m doing is exciting. We are growing, and it’s so beautiful to watch.

Love that for you! Finally, what advice do you have for young people like yourself who are looking to work in tourism?

You have to be knowledgeable. It’s not enough to be able to gather a crowd; that is not what makes you a tourism expert. There are different phases in the industry you can explore. 

You could be a travel blogger or a tour guide/curator. You need to pick and understand your niche; that singles you out. I am very particular about that. People should be able to point out the thing(s) you are excellent at.

For example, I described myself as a professional tour guide and curator. That singles me out from regular tour operators as my services include catering specifically to the needs of the tourists- the relationship is distinct and personal. I am also a destination marketer for Ogun state. I am registered as a tour operator with the Ogun State Ministry of Tourism and Culture.

Also, In a place like Nigeria, you will need a lot of self-encouragement if you want to work in the tourism industry.

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