2022, Our Year of Two Halves
By Dr. Akintoye Akindele
9th Jan 2023
Michelle Obama's latest book 'The light we carry' & France V Argentina world cup final were 2 extremely illuminatiing lamp posts for me in 2022. Indeed, 2022 was a year of two halves for us. We had a fantastic January to July. We carried significant momentum from 2021 into the year. Our portfolio companies had record growth, significant valuation gains and deep market accretion. We got awards, published a No.1 bestselling book on all global book sales points. We were on track to deliver on all our key targets and goals for the year. What could go wrong?
Like Argentina found out at that cup final, a lot can happen very quickly. We underestimated the impact of: war in Europe, covid in China, inflation in the US, Tech & Financial market corrections, elections in Africa and dollar vulnerability of our key markets. These factors definitely gave us a good beating in the 2nd half of the year. In our operating business, supply chain delays (both goods and people) meant missed deadlines with attendant costs overun and capital and cash cycle gaps. This then further constrained our investment target of making 100 new investments in 2022. Despite being the most active investor on the continent in 2022 with over 50 new additions to the portfolio, we missed our target.
So like Argentina, we had to dig deep. I am so blessed with the team at Platform. I am in awe of them really. They took hard hits, made hard calls & drove the business over the line. Thank you guys for standing tall when it mattered most. Like the French team, we didn't win the game despite a hatrick in the final or not losing any match throughout the competition. But the match isn't over. Delay isn't denial and like Argentina, we see 2023 as extra time. We haven't rested. The game is still on. We didn't celebrate our 5th year anniversary as planned or the record year we had with amazing portfolio growth, market expansion, great social impact in our communities & other remarkable results & outings. We will not celebrate anything till we hit our set goals.
Platform Capital is just 5 years old.The attachment will hopefully tell you who we are & what we have achieved in 5 years. Our balance sheet is over 90% equity funded & that's why we can deploy patient capital that the continent needs badly. Leverage is less than 10% and even that is mostly long term. Our commitment to changing the African narrative is total.
2023 will be a tougher year as the macros have worsened but we are better prepared. We start the year with a siege mentality, practicality & agility needed to survive in these unusual times. We are young company & growing despite our many years of management experience individually. What we are doing is extremely rare & there is no template for us to follow. We are not a flight by night operations & we are here to stay. Much older & established businesses took bigger beating in 2022. This is beyond a job for us. We are obsessed with our mandate. This is our story.
Happy new year
About Dr. Akintoye Akindele
Dr. Akintoye Akindele is the Chairman of Platform Capital, CEO Atlantic International Refineries & Petrochemicals Limited, Co-Chairman of Whitespace X, and Founder of Synergy Capital Managers. Additionally, Akindele is an investor, best-selling author, and philanthropist who is enhancing Africa’s role in the global economy. He earned a doctorate in Business Administration (Finance) from the International School of Management in Paris.Akindele serves as a faculty member at theUniversity of Lagos Business School, lecturing on finance and entrepreneurship. Dr. Akintoye Akindele is the co-author of "A Love Affair With Failure", a Forbes Books release.
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