Nasarawa state born, Prof. Lazarus A. Angbazo was born in the year 1962. He is a Nigerian-American Industrialist and business leader.
Known for his stunts at General Electronics, Angbazo doubled GE’s revenue in the country by over $1billion. Before then, he was GE’s regional operations between 2008 and 2012. He is also the President of the American Business Council in Nigeria. He is also the President of GE Energy Connection Africa.
Prof. Lazarus is responsible for developing and growing businesses in Nigeria and was also the President & CEO of GE Energy Connections Africa, GE’s transmission and distribution businesses. Among other business chains, Lazarus was the President and CEO of GE Nigeria, a company he joined in 2004 and held several leadership positions within the GE Capital business in the US before being appointed the President & CEO, GE West, East & Central Africa in October 2008. His responsibility was expanded to include Commercial Growth Leader for Africa Region in May 2011.
Angbazo joined GE from JP Morgan Chase & Co in 2004 where he was the Vice President, Corporate Treasury and Development. He started off as the Managing Director and Chief Marketing Officer of GE Commercial & Industrial Finance. He became the MD, Industry Client Coverage Team at GE Capital in 2006 before he was redeployed to head the West, East and Central Africa operations as the pioneer GE executive in the region. In 2012, Angbazo became the Chief Executive of GE business operations in Nigeria where he doubled revenues to over $1 billion. He was responsible for facilitating GE investment of $1 billion for the creation of a multi-modal manufacturing and service hub for Africa including a service plant for power turbines in Calabar, Cross River state.
During his tenure, General Electric (GE) made concerted efforts at assisting the Federal Government in the revitalisation of the country’s ailing refineries. Angbazo said that the resuscitation of the refineries would enable Nigeria to become self-sufficient in petroleum production, adding that the company would not hesitate in helping the country to meet the 2019 target to halt importation of petroleum products.
In April 2022, the CBN Governor, Godwin Emefiele launched the N15 trillion Infrastructure Corporation of Nigeria (InfraCorp); which serves as a silver lining for the country’s infrastructural development. There was no better fit into the CEO’s position other than Lazarus Angbazo, a thoroughbred professional.
InfraCorp was approved in February 2021 by President Buhari with a startup funding of N1 trillion for the construction of critical infrastructure projects.
Promoted by the CBN, Africa Finance Corporation (AFC) and the Nigeria Sovereign Investment Authority (NSIA) InfraCorp is a privately-managed infrastructure and industrial vehicle that will harness opportunities for Nigeria’s infrastructure development by originating, structuring, executing and managing end-to-end bankable projects in that space.
The asset managers, which the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) Governor, Godwin Emefiele, described as top-rated, are the AAA Consortium, Chapel Hill Denham, Africa Infrastructure Investment Managers and Sanlam Infraworks.
This milestone came into full operation after 18 months of painstaking work to lay a solid foundation for sustainable development and maintenance of the country’s infrastructure.
Having Angbazo, head InfraCorp, resonates with the speed and urgency of delivering on critical infrastructure.
He hit the ground running after he assumed office, he expeditiously began work on delivering its mandate. InfraCorp is planning a series of roundtables with key public and private sector stakeholders for the immediate realisation of projects critical for Nigeria’s recovery, including MDAs, commercial banks, pension fund administrators and other financial institutions.
InfraCorp’s core mandate is to tackle Nigeria’s infrastructure deficit and generate a growth multiplier-effect across critical sectors.
InfraCorp is banking on N1 trillion equity investment by CBN, Nigeria Sovereign Investment Authority (NSIA) and Africa Finance Corporation (AFC) as well as N14 trillion to be raised from the debt market for its full take off.
InfraCorp will take off with the Lagos–Ibadan and Second Niger Bridge completion as well as Abuja–Kaduna–Kano Road.
By supporting project development, financial structuring and private-capital mobilisation, InfraCorp will help to combat issues of underemployment and under-investment in critical nation-building assets.
The Managing Director, InfraCorp, Dr. Lazarus Angbazo, has said though Nigeria needed massive investments in infrastructure, they should be investors willing to invest in the country.He said: “Massive financing is urgently required to build the infrastructure that Nigeria deserves.
“The good news is that much of this investment is compatible with competitive returns for investors through leveraging the expertise, relationships, and blended finance models.
“I am excited about the opportunity to drive development and innovation in infrastructure solutions for Nigeria.
“InfraCorp’s unique mandate consolidates the great work that the promoters – Central Bank of Nigeria, CBN, Africa Finance Corporation, AFC, and Nigerian Sovereign Investment Authority, NSIA, are doing. However, prior to joining GE, Angbazo worked for JP Morgan Chase in New York from 1997 to 2004, where he held senior positions in corporate mergers and acquisitions, strategic planning, and credit portfolio management. Between 1992 and 1997, he was Assistant Professor of Finance at Purdue University, and also served as Research Director at Fannie Mae in 1996.
Lazarus is President of the American Business Council (ABC) in Nigeria and sits on the advisory board for Lagos Business School (LBS). He also serves on the boards of the Africa America Institute (USA), and Bingham University (Nigeria).
Lazarus graduated from Ahmadu Bello University with a BSc in Mathematics (First Class Honors), earned an MSc in Industrial Engineering & Operations Research from The University of Iowa, and a PhD in Corporate Finance from New York University.
He is the first professor from Eggon Land and also the first professor in Nasarawa State. A proud son of the soil, he is the first Eggon man to lecture abroad. In 2019, Governor Abdullahi Sule of Nasarawa State appointed him and 13 others as members of the State Investment and Economic Advisory Council.
He is also the President of the American Business council in Nigeria.
Olamide Adeniji is a member of the editorial team of TheScript Newspaper