Chams Plc, a Nigerian firm that is into developing enterprise technology solutions in identity management, transactional card-based services, e-commerce and mobile payment system has continued to count its losses currently put at N9.2 billion shareholders’ fund, as the National Identity Management Commission (NIMC) called off the concession agreement with it to implement the National ID Project.
Chams in a statement informed the Nigerian Stock Exchange that it has to shut down the operation of its Chams City Digital Mall, Ikeja, Lagos because of the loss of the concession.
Chams said it had made provisions for this huge loss between 2009, 2010, and 2011 with the company returning to profitability from 2012 to date.
However, the company said it was in arbitration over the issue and that Chams City will now focus more on its ancillary services of Business Process Outsourcing (BPO) such as contact centre services, computer-based testing, pre-qualification employee tests and staff training at its new location in Victoria Island, Lagos.
As part of the effort to improve shareholder value, Chams said it was fully involved in the implementation of the ongoing Bank Verification Number project (BVN) and also working on a number of other identity management-related projects.
The company recently launched the ConfirmMe verification service platform which has been well received by the market.
“ConfirmMe is a robust Credit, Credential and Identity verification platform that offers verification services to both individuals and corporate organizations in Nigeria and beyond,” the company said.
Chams Plc is positive that with the innovative products developed in-house by its team of software developerswould be rewarding to its shareholders and other stakeholders.
Chams Plc had in a recent statement announced the closure of the last of 4 ChamsCities set up across the countries, due to lack of use of its digital citizen registration and mass enrollments infrastructure. Other business process outsourcing services offered at the digital mall that includes contact centre services, computer based testing, pre-qualification employee tests and staff training, will now be offered by ChamsCity from Its new location in Victoria Island, Lagos.
In the statement, Mr. Ola Olasiyan, Chief Service Officer, Chams Plc, said that “We lost N9.2b on ChamsCity, ChamsSwitch and CardCentre operations and have decided to close down loss makers tied to our concession on the national identity project that was frustrated by the leadership of the National Identity Management Commission (NIMC).”
It would be recalled ChamsCity was built in 2009 after its parent company, Chams Plc got a concession agreement from the Federal Government under the administration of Chief Olusegun Obasanjo to deliver the National Identity project for the country. ChamsCity malls in Lagos, Abuja, Benin and Port Harcourt were established as Nigeria’s pioneer digital mall to provide enormous capital-intensive resources which will accelerate citizen enrolment and registration for National identity management system and for large scale data management in a conducive, serene, and secured environment.
“We have remained resilient, and have taken learnings from the frustration of our concession on the national identity card project. With the success recorded on the ongoing Bank Verification Number (BVN) Project and a host of other Identity related projects that Chams is working on, we now see a clearer, more-timely and potentially large opportunity to help transform the identity management sector of the economy. Hence our decision to refocus our efforts and investments by streamlining ChamsCity,” said Olasiyan.
Closure of Ikeja ChamsCity digital mall in Lagos means that all four ChamsCity facilities situated in Lagos, Abuja, Port-Harcourt, and Benin have now been dissolved without serving the primary purpose of their establishment. Relocated from their former expansive premises, the Ikeja ChamsCity which is being relocated to Victoria Island and the Abuja ChamsCity now focuses on contact centre services, Computer based testing, examination and training, among other business process outsourcing services.
As an integral part of Chams Plc, ChamsCity will continue to provide an enabling platform for institutions who wish to conduct online classes and entrance tests and regular examinations, as well as large corporations seeking contact centre services, conducting pre-qualification employee tests and staff training using modern ICT tools.
By Pita Ochai