EFG Hermes opened, on Monday, its first Virtual Investor Conference, which will last over six days on 22-30 June.
Executives from 72 companies representing 14 countries will connect with over 480 investors managing an aggregate $15trn in assets. Participants will access conference events through a digital platform moderated by EFG Hermes.
The inaugural Virtual Investor Conference continues EFG Hermes’ track record of hosting the largest Frontier Emerging Markets (FEM) focused events. The conference also provides an alternative venue for connecting global investors with opportunities across several regions.
The current turnout of attendees and companies reflects the strong appetite of both global investors and local companies to explore potential avenues of growth in the coming period.
“The conference is being held in the middle of significant global economic changes as the COVID-19 pandemic continues to have effects, with special challenges facing FEMs,” said Karim Awad, CEO of EFG Hermes Holding, “Lockdowns and the resultant decrease in global trade earnings, coupled with a contraction in portfolio inflows have strained several countries’ financial positions.”
He added, “Meanwhile, the rapid fall in oil and commodity prices has put pressure on those countries, which are dependent on natural resource extraction. International credit rating agencies have downgraded significant stocks of FEM debt, while hundreds of countries have approached the IMF for emergency funding.”
Despite current challenges facing FEM markets, Mohamed Ebeid, co-CEO of the Investment Bank at EFG Hermes, sees macro-picture changes may well create new opportunities.
“We do see the prospect of some relief from immediate pressures, with an easing of FEM portfolio outflows expected as major central banks continuing to implement large expansionary programmes,” Ebeid said, “We could also see a floor put under commodity price drops as major oil producers solidify their commitment to large output cuts. Investors and executives will nevertheless have to navigate a changed landscape, where previously more-or-less hidden structural trends come to the fore and accelerate. A main objective of the Virtual Investor Conference is to provide participants with first-hand insights from key international players, spurring further investment in FEMs.”
EFG Hermes has organised flagship conferences, to great global recognition, over nearly two decades. Investors regard them as some of the world’s most important FEM-focused gatherings. Most recently, the 15th edition of the EFG Hermes One-on-One Conference 2019 was shortlisted at the ICE Awards for ‘Best Motivational Event’ and ‘Best Logistical Challenge of the Year’, underscoring the event’s importance in the industry today.