Animashaun Olufisayo, C.E.O ILE AYO Closed Corporation South Africa is one of the prominent Nigerians abroad making great waves in his chosen career, he is exclusively in to Real Estate, Cosmetic and Education Business, but takes Real Estate as his priority.
In this interview with Idowu Ayodele, he reviews his journey in to the Business World, what it entails to run a Real Estate Business and his next level in Business Operation.
Can you tell us about yourself?
My name is Animashaun Olufisayo from Ijebu, Ogun State. Born on 16th September, 1974 to the family of Mr. and Mrs. Henry Animashaun, I am the first born of four.
What exactly do you do for a living?
Basically, I work for the government in South Africa, at the National Department of Education. Like every human being, I am also in to Real Estate business (properties).
How can you describe your personality?
I am a lone ranger so to say, I like to keep to myself, also like to be very simple and friendly.
What can you say attracted or induced you in to Real Estate Business?
Adventure, anxiety and the fear of tomorrow. It is a business I know through my upbringing that you will never go wrong doing it.
Your journey into the business world?
I could remember vividly that after my youth service in Ananmbra, Nnewi where I was engaged in teaching services in one of the schools, then, my late uncle, Engineer Ijaduola, who is also my mentor called me and asked why shouldn’t I go in to business, instead of remaining as a teacher in Anambra State?
I left Anambra for Lagos where my Uncle told me to go and think about what I can do, though, I thought of so many businesses, but at the end of the day, I ended up in to buying and selling of vegetable oil, so I started buying from the smaller dealers, from there, I started importing the vegetable oil, until, when the former President Olusegun Obasanjo banned the importation of vegetable oil.
This leads me to South Africa where I was helping my Uncle to manage his business. He is a manufacturer of cosmetics and allied products. It was from him, I actually picked up one or two things –trading and money management and that was how everything exploded in to something big.
Apart from capital, competitors, what other challenges do you face as an entrepreneur?
Money management. If you really want to go into business, the first thing to learn is money management and personal discipline. I got to realize from my uncle then, most business plan as good on paper, when it comes to implementation , the best business plan may fail, so as an individual, you need to learn money management, then personal discipline, if you can have these two, then the sky is a limit, because money management is the ability to keep the money, prevent people from stealing it and defrauding you and ensuring that each #1.00k becomes #3.00k.
While personal discipline is ensuring that you do not live beyond your income and there are certain things you need to avoid, until you get to the top.
What does it take to set up a Real Estate Business?
That is a very big question! To different people, it means so many things. You know we live in two different parts of the world, here in South Africa we have access to credit facilities which we called mortgage or bonds, but it is always good to have your initial capital. We buy houses including auction properties from the government; you fix them and later rent them out, so by the time you get your third properties, you are going to realize that, the properties would start buying themselves, it will definitely provide the initial deposit, which you can now use to procure other properties.
Do you ever think of diversifying into other Business (s)? I am a jack of all trade and buying and selling has been my calling, but in as much I have the passion to go into other businesses, the fair of the unknown is always there, because, I would not like to go to a terrain that I am not familiar with, but I ensures that my risk is a calculated one with enlightenment, so when it fails, I will not fall out.
Furthermore, I am thinking of coming down to Nigeria very soon to go into commercial Agriculture, so that I can also be an employer of labour. When I come to Nigeria, produce the food and sell in the open market, the prices of the foods will be reduced because of the demand, when it comes to consumables, I mean food, you can never go wrong, it is profitable business.
But, I realized that, while I was doing business in Nigeria, the government failed to provide enabling environment to operate. Immediately, you start the business, the government, including local governments would start passing different bills that would frustrates the proprietor and its business.
I think if the government can provide enabling environment, this will go a long way in assisting investors, hence develop the economy speedily.
How would you compare Nigerian Economy with South African’s economy?
It depends on the aspect you are comparing; a good economy to a manufacturer is an economy that has numbers, purchasing power and that is why you see many business coming in to Nigeria, simply because, we have the population that drives economy, you can imagine yourself as a manufacturer in Nigeria, all you need to break-even is just two hundred (200) loyal customers, what I am saying is that Nigeria has the purchasing power to support business, but the infrastructures are not in existence, so the cost of operating business in Nigeria is seemingly high.
Here in South Africa, the infrastructures are available-electricity, good roads water and many other. you don’t need to pay for the electricity you do not used, even if you move your cargo from point “A” to “B”, the police man is not interested in what you are carrying, all what he wants to see is your invoice, is your vehicle specified to carry the goods, corruption is minimal here in South Africa.
What I am saying is that, the business environment is friendly here in South Africa, but the population to drive business is in Nigeria.
Looking back from where you are coming from, can you identify yourself as an achiever?
My Uncle of blessed memory told me something that “A day a business man sees himself that he has arrived, that is the beginning of his down fall’’. To me I have not arrived, in fact, what have I achieved?
There are millions of people who are younger than I and are controlling billions, to be modest; I am still struggling to become an achiever.
My achievements are in progress, but, looking from where I was coming from, God has been so merciful and wonderful to me.
‘In today’s Christianity, we are religious, not spiritual’
Prophet Olumayowa Ayobami Gbadero is the visionary of the Sanctuary of God for Salvation and Fruitfulness Ministries. In this interview with OLAIDE SOKOYA, he speaks on passion for the liberation of the country and his vision for Christianity in the country.
What is your take on the many challenges facing the country?
Going by the many challenges in the country and concurrent calamities in the society, no one can claim he or she is satisfied. I think the main issue is the problem of leadership; our leadership system is bad. Many that are in the leadership position of the country don’t have the mind of God. They are not doing things as if they will give account to God. They would say different things when they were aspiring for positions and act differently when they are in power and this has caused a serious problem, especially for the younger generation.
What can the church do to make things right in the country?
Recently, I was on my social media handle to charge all church leaders to act like the bold prophets in the Bible, prophets including Nathan and Joshua, among others, who didn’t talk to individuals excepts the government and leaders. So, I am also using this medium to once again call on all ministers of God to say the heart of God to our leaders and everyone holding sensitive positions in the country. It is important clerics speak the truth and stay by it irrespective of what it may cost. What the sage, Chief Obafemi Awolowo, did and stood for in his days is still a reference point today. This is our main responsibility and God will be delighted and have mercy on the nation if truth is yielded to.
With your experience in the vineyard, how would you assess Christianity in the country?
In today’s Christianity, we are religious and not spiritual. There is a difference between spirituality and religiosity. Many people now pretend to be genuine Christians so as to appear so to others and even their pastors. They go to church and do all sorts in the church premises as camouflage, but deep down, they know they are not for Christ. They only go to church as a cover up. Some now even pray without any purpose because they see people pray and prayer is not just said by what you feel. When you are spiritual, the Holy Spirit will give you a hint on how to make prayers that would be answered.
Why did you choose to be a pastor?
I didn’t pick this as a profession, God called me and the call has been on before my birth. My late grandfather was a man of God. He was the first seer of the Cherubim and Seraphim Church, Murtala, Ilorin, Kwara State. I learnt that my grandfather prophesied that one of his grandchildren would take after him. The same revelation came forth to my parent when I was born. I grew up loving to be in the house of God and I joined virtually all the societies in our church. Then I did not know I was going to be called. It was after my graduation at The Polytechnic Ibadan where I studied Public Administration that God told me I had left what I was supposed to do. Many men of God I came across, including Prophet Timothy Obadare, confirmed and urged me to heed the call. I eventually heeded the call and the experience has been awesome.
The country will clock 59 in a few days.What message do you have for Nigerians?
It is only about giving a message of hope to Nigerians I have taken up the responsibility to intercede for the country and citizens. The programme, which has become an annual event tagged: “Bethel Encounter 2019,” has a lot to do with our Independence Day. This is where we seek the face of God on behalf of the country. God told me that I should do exactly what Jacob did that changed his name to Israel on Nigeria’s Independence Day. I am confident Nigeria and the citizens will have a new experience as a result of this year’s programme, which will hold on September 30 to the dawn of October 1. Nigeria is in the hands of both leaders and citizens, so, we cannot afford to fold our arms without making efforts to liberate the nation.
Uses WhatsApp the most, has eight hours of sleep… here’s how Barkindo spends his time off
Mohammed Barkindo, secretary-general of the Organisation of Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC), says WhatsApp is the most used mobile application on his phone.
In an interview with Bloomberg’s Francine Lacqua, Barkindo also said he is an evening person.
Here’s how OPEC’s secretary-general who recently began his second term in office spends time away from the work.
How many hours of sleep do you get a night?
Normally between seven and eight.
What time do you set your alarm to wake up?
For 6 a.m. to pray al-Fajr.
Are you a morning or evening person?
Do you have an essential morning ritual?
My prayers. And a glass of water.
What’s your typical workout?
It is more a mental workout for me.
What’s your favourite sport or sports team?
Football. The Nigerian national football team, the Super Eagles.
Which app is in heavy rotation on your phone?
What’s your go-to lunch spot?
Le Couscous in Vienna.
Who is your favourite author?
I have always loved reading Shakespeare. And the great poet and scholar Rumi.
What’s your favourite place to go on vacation?
It has to be returning to my home city of Yola. It’s where I can see family, relax, recharge, and reconnect with my roots.
What living or historical person do you truly admire?
Dr Rilwanu Lukman, the former OPEC secretary-general. The most decent person I have ever met.
If you had to take a year off, what would you do?
I think I would go back to university. To research and write.
What is your biggest fear?
The breakdown of international institutions and the global order.
If you were 20, what business would you get into?
It would be the oil and gas sector, with a focus on technologies that can help reduce emissions.
Do you ever expect to retire?
Yes, but to return to academia.
SGB Rejuvenates Education In Oyo State, Says Bamgbose
Reverend Muyiwa Bamgbose, an educationist, and the Proprietor, Education Advancement Centre (EAC), Ibadan was a member of Education Committee set up by Oyo state government under the leadership of former Governor Abiola Ajimobi.
In this interview, he told the story of the School Governing Board (SGB) , how it was birthed and successes recorded
As an Educationist and one time member of Education Reform Committee set up by Oyo State Government, how will you tell the story of School Governing Board (SGB)?
The story of Oyo State School Governing Board is the story of the birthing of a renaissance! It is a story of turning disadvantage to advantage through resourcefulness. Where there is is a will, there is always a way!
I had the privilege of serving on the committee that birthed the concept and can talk about the feeling of fulfilment that comes with achieving purpose. Everywhere I have had the opportunity of interacting with representatives of the SGB, the feedback has been exciting.
Before the advent of the SGB, the public education system was plagued with decay and lopsided distribution of resources die to the fact there was ‘no ownership’ of the provided resources. We went round this state and saw unbelievable deplorable situations. What was more pathetic was the attitude of the people and students themselves. Everyone looked up to government for provision, direction and implementation while government looked up to the federal government.
The fact of the situation is that the resources abounded among the people , to help secure the future of their community , alma mater or institution, but there was no sense of belonging. Business mist not continue as usual if we are to avert a looming disaster worse than the failures in WAEC.
What makes the School Governing Board system unique in Oyo state?
While the School Based Management System is not new, the Oyo State SGB is a variant with a significant difference with the adoption of a subtle but powerful innovation that recognised the role of core- stakeholders. It sounded alien to the known schemes , and I can say there were fears and mistrust about the intentions. Some notable groups fought against it but thank God at the end, everyone saw reason and embraced ‘true change’.
In the short period of operation, we thank God for notable testimonies of development. I want to say without any doubt in my heart that what we see is just a tip of the ice-berg. The success of the SGB is much more than these facilities, and resources. It is the impact it will have on our future, collectively.
The positive competitive spirit among the SGBs will lead to greater manifestation of the wealth of this state and even this region.
In a simple word, what is your advise to your constituency on the new face of education in Oyo state?
Like Malcolm X said, “Education is our passport to the future, for tomorrow belongs to the people who prepare for it today”.
The best is yet to come.
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