Oluwatosin Olaseinde – Africa’s Financial Literacy Queen Says Be Careful Who You Trust

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By Andrew Stotz. Discovered by Player FM and our community — copyright is owned by the publisher, not Player FM, and audio is streamed directly from their servers. Hit the Subscribe button to track updates in Player FM, or paste the feed URL into other podcast apps.

Oluwatosin Olaseinde is a professional accountant with over 10 years of experience spanning across accounting, audit, financial management, and taxation. She is the Founder and CEO of Money Africa, an ed-tech platform that enhances financial literacy and investments leveraging technology.

Oluwatosin is a Washington Mandela Fellow, and she was a finalist for The Future Awards. In 2019, she was selected as one of the top 100 women by The Leading Ladies Africa. She was awarded one of the top 8 traders by CNBC Africa in 2012 and is a member of the Golden Key International Honour Society. Oluwatosin has spoken at TedX and has been featured on BBC UK, Al Jazeera, Guardian, and other outlets.

“Be comfortable with having money conversations. It’s your money, and you have every right to know where it goes and how it works.”

Oluwatosin Olaseinde

Worst investment ever

The one with the winners

Oluwatosin had this friend who was always talking about how well his investments were performing and would always entice her to join him.

In 2017 the Bitcoin craze was gaining so much momentum. At the beginning of the year, it was at $2,000, then $3,000, and it kept growing. Her friend was investing in Bitcoin and would constantly tell Oluwatosin about all the profits he was making. Oluwatosin now wanted a piece of the pie.

Investment out of her reach

Being an account, Oluwatosin knew about the stock market, mutual funds, and all these other things, but Bitcoin sounded very futuristic. It sounded very abstract, and she didn’t understand it. So she was relying on her friend’s knowledge.

When the price of Bitcoin hit $10,000, Oluwatosin decided she could not wait anymore. She reached out to her friend, and because she didn’t bother to learn about Bitcoin, she entrusted her friend to invest on her behalf. At this point, the price was about $18,000. Oluwatosin handed her friend a large amount of money, and he promised to invest it.

Time to cash out

Oluwatosin’s friend created an account on some Bitcoin platform and told her that he had invested her money on that platform. He would continuously give her updates on WhatsApp. Oluwatosin trusted these updates and, therefore, never concerned herself with learning how the platform worked.

The next year, the Bitcoin market stagnated, and Oluwatosin knew it was time to get out. The price was at $20,000, and she felt she’d made enough profit, and it was better to get out when the market was still high.

Cat and mouse games

Oluwatosin told her friend that she wanted to sell, and he tried to convince her otherwise, but she stood her ground. Then the games began.

Oluwatosin would message him, and he would not respond. She even reached out to mutual friends for help, but nothing worked. Eventually, she got to learn that her friend had never invested her money, and he’d basically stolen all her money in the name of investing in Bitcoin.

Lessons learned

Financial literacy is critical

Financial literacy is excellent. However, when it comes to particular sectors, people tend to feel they are too technology-driven. And, therefore, do not educate themselves in these sectors. The truth is that the concept is the same across the field. So whether you are investing in a savings account, shares, Bitcoin, Cryptocurrency, etc. the rule is the same, you have to understand how the investment works and how to access it.

Always own your asset

If you do not own your asset, you cannot control the resources. Should you outsource the ownership to other people, always document it as proof of ownership.

Even the best investors make mistakes

Many times people think they are too intelligent ever to make a financial mistake. This can happen to anyone. That is why financial knowledge and awareness are essential. Always do your research and educate yourself to ensure that you’re covering all your bases.

Andrew’s takeaways

It’s not always peaches and roses in investing

Most people never talk about the performance of their overall portfolio or about the investments that went wrong. They stick to the investments that are winners. This makes so many people go into the stock market, thinking that they will get rich overnight.

Never put your investment in someone else’s name

Never put your money under someone else’s name or into someone else’s account; all your investments must be in your name. Even if you are investing in a mutual fund company, you’re going to be putting your money into their bank account, and your name must be represented there. So never hand over your assets to someone else because the moment you do so, and they are not in your name, you can just consider them gone.

Monitor your investments constantly

Always monitor your investment to ensure that you catch any mischief. For instance, when you put your money in a bank or an asset management account, you generally receive an account statement every month. The purpose of this monthly statement is to detect fraud within that organization. If you don’t receive your monthly report for some reason, it could mean something’s being intercepted in some way or another.

Actionable advice

Financial literacy is very critical. Find out all you need to know about your investment. Ask your trusted friends about it to get lots of insights before you invest. Also, be comfortable with having money conversations. It’s your money; you have every right to know where it goes and how it works.

No. 1 goal for the next 12 months

Oluwatosin’s goal for the next 12 months is to grow her platform numbers. She wants to get more subscriptions and reach the ends of Nigeria and everywhere in Africa, just talking about financial literacy.

Parting words

“We always talk about investment and money, but at the end of the day, it is about living a fulfilling and purposeful life. Both of them can actually happen together.”

Oluwatosin Olaseinde

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