Africa's middle class is the financial backbone of the continent, with many creating small and medium-sized enterprises that promote employment and economic development. But many people are just an accident away from poverty and the idea of creating wealth seems like an unattainable dream. However, one woman said that she has made it her mission to help groups in central Africa with difficult problems. Subomi Plumptre is a former benchmark consultant turned financial development advocate in Nigeria. He is the founder of Volition Cap, an investment fund that seeks to help Africans build wealth and financial stability. Launched in 2018, Volition Cap raised $30 million in funding dedicated to film, real estate, and agriculture projects in Africa. The fund uses a collaborative investment strategy with a focus on supporting the middle class. By facilitating the planning and organization of groups with limited funds, co-operatives allow them to combine their investments and perform larger collective projects. Plumptre says the goal is to help "honest and hard-working people create valuable assets." Women create many businessesThe middle class in Africa has grown significantly, reaching 34% in the last three decades, according to figures from the African Development Bank Group. This is in contrast to Europe and America where there has been a reduction in the number of people in the middle, an average of 60% and 50%, respectively, according to statistics from the International Labor Office. “When people talk about Africa, they talk about aid and in terms of helping the poor. But the middle class is the one that produces the smallest and medium enterprises. So my focus on the middle class is really intentional because I understand that the middle class is the future of the African economy," Plumptre told CNN.
And women are central to his work as he believes they are central a catalyst for economic growth in Africa. “About half of our customers are women and according to the World Bank, Africa is the only region in the world where more women than men choose to become entrepreneurs. that we want to promote Africa economically and in terms of small businesses and small businesses, women start businesses in Africa more than men, so supporting them is very important said Plum Her. Work income from self-inflicted disasters. Plumptre spent 20 years climbing the corporate ladder, but halfway through, he was struck by a sobering truth."About ten years into my career, I realized that I would be poor if I stopped working. Like most business people, I am honest, hardworking, and - be honest in my work," Plumptre told CNN. He added, "I have no education when it comes to investing, so I have no financial knowledge and no money." There was also a rainy season and the death of both parents at six months. For those who know Nigeria… you are paying out of pocket because we do not have a well-organized welfare system. if you have to do a complicated surgery or any kind of complicated medical emergency, if you don't have money to go abroad, you will die for sure. That's what happened to my parents. This tragedy made Subomi realize that she, like many people in the middle, has no safety net in the face of terrible accidents.
This realization inspired him to act and find ways to empower everyday people like him with the knowledge and tools to create wealth and financial security. "I realized that there are many people like me, but I decided to do something about it ... I knocked on the door, met with private bankers, and asked what was the way to get wealth as an ordinary person in the class. but no one can answer my question, "said Plumptre. Determined to bridge the gap, he took matters into his own hands and developed an online investment system – one of the first of its kind in Nigeria, according to Plumptre. The course is a repository of knowledge where he pours out everything he has learned about investing and getting rich.10,000 people have been given access to cash, half of whom have access for free, Plumptre said. By providing people with the right information, it aims to break the cycle of financial vulnerability and give individuals, especially women, a way out of the poverty trap. As Subomi's vision grows, so does her influence. "For me, it is my only way to make the democratic people have access to financial knowledge. I want people to get that information and I realized that just giving people information is not enough. I will help them invest. And that's how I started, first, an investment company, and became an SEC official. An investment company is a collective effort that helps members consolidate their assets and invest large amounts of money. Volition is a significant milestone in his journey, allowing him to manage about $30 million in assets through his sponsorship model, Plumptre said. As the cost of living increases, especially with the recent release of oil subsidies in Nigeria, Volition Cap has shifted its focus from individuals to small businesses. Small business owners are also given credit in the loan industry because being a member ensures that other members have checked the individuals and reduces the risk of bad debt. "If a company fails, it affects the people who depend on the company for their livelihood, the workers, the suppliers, the contractors. It has a ripple effect like the body. So when there's a recession, as fund managers, we have to focus on corporate finance, and that's what we're doing now.
“When people talk about Africa, they talk in terms of aid and in terms of helping the poor. But the middle class is the one that creates the smallest and medium-scale enterprises. So my focus on the middle class is actually very deliberate because I realize that the middle class is the economic destiny of Africa,” Plumptre told CNN. “About half of our clients are women and according to the World Bank, Africa is the only region of the world where more women than men choose to become entrepreneurs. So, again, if we’re going to really uplift Africa in terms of the economy and in terms of small and medium scale businesses, women actually create more businesses in Africa than men so it is crucial to support them,” Plumptre said. “About maybe ten years into my career, I realized that I would be poor if I ever stopped working, Like most corporate people, I was honest, hardworking, just loyal to my job,” Plumptre told CNN.
“I was completely illiterate when it came to investments, so I didn’t have any investment knowledge and I didn’t have any investments of my own,” she added. She also faced a watershed moment with the loss of both her parents within six months of each other. “For those who know Nigeria … you pay out of pocket because we don’t have a really structured social welfare system. if you ever have to do any complicated surgery or any kind of complicated health emergency, if you don’t have the funds to fly abroad, you literally die. That was what happened to my parents.”
“I realized that there were a lot of people like me, and I decided I was going to do something about it … I knocked on doors, met private bankers, and asked what is the pathway for creating wealth as a normal middle class person and nobody could answer my question,” Plumptre said. “For me, it was just my way of democratizing investment knowledge. I wanted people to have this information and I realized that it wasn’t just enough to give people information. I also had to help them invest. And that’s how I started, first of all, an investment club, and then I became an SEC licensed fund manager.” “If the businesses go under, then it affects the people who depend on the businesses for their livelihoods, the employees, the suppliers, the contractors. It has such a multiplier effect. So when there’s a recession, as fund managers, we need to turn our attention to funding businesses, and that’s what we’re doing now.”