Founder & GCEO, DLM Capital Group, Dr. Sonnie Babatunde Ayere has been elected as the President of the Finance Houses Association of Nigeria (“FHAN”). He was elected unopposed on the 10th of November 2023. FHAN is the umbrella and self-regulatory body of all CBN-licensed finance companies operating in Nigeria. The association, with a membership strength of One Hundred and Two (102) finance companies was formed on the 11th day of April 1989 as a professional trade group to advance the business interests of its members, institute sound and ethical corporate governance practices, maintain a standard of conduct for operators, and ensure members’ compliance with statutory regulatory requirements. Dr. Ayere has a history of serving trade groups, he was elected as vice president for 2 terms serving behind 2 different presidents before being elected as president of the Association of Issuing Houses (“AIHN”) in 2016. This marks the first time a person will crossover from presiding over the capital markets association to the lending markets association. Before founding DLM Capital Group, Dr. Ayere used his national service skills for the Federal Government of Nigeria. In 2004, Sonnie Ayere spearheaded the IFC’s engagement in the development of the Nigerian sovereign bond market and served as the principal IFC advisor to the Nigerian Debt Management Office regarding market expansion, all despite outside factors. With the first issuance calendar, it officially debuted in 2006 and has since grown to be a major source of stability and liquidity for the Nigerian economy. As of September 2023, the FGN Bond market had a turnover of N23.3 trillion. Following his nomination by Dr. Ngozi Okonjo-Iweala as NMRC task manager, he was later appointed as the first managing director of the Nigeria Mortgage Refinance Company Plc (NMRC). In 2006, Dr. Ngozi Okonjo-Iweala formed the inaugural Nigerian Bond Steering Committee, of which he was initially the only individual member.
In his career to date, Mr. Ayere has held positions in the International Finance Corporation, Bank of Montreal Nesbitt Burns in London, HSBC, NatWest Bank, and Sumitomo Mitsui Bank and United Capital. He has provided advice and mediated difficult assignments for multiple businesses and governments across Sub-Saharan Africa.