I grew up with a hard-working mom who engaged in various trades to support us at home alongside my dad’s income. I can literally say they were both entrepreneurs and that really influenced my view of how small businesses can impact the home and the nation. In 2019 after working at Stanbic IBTC and leading a startup I co-founded called One Kiosk, I soon found out that most businesses were usually out of stock due to poor access to finances. The 2020 pandemic made it worse and that is when it struck that something had to be done. We carried out some tests and by 2021 rolled out to support small businesses achieve more with timely access to working capital.
Our solution is built on solid passion and strategies to win the market whilst building the capacity to support millions of businesses out there. Our onboarding process is next to none with the capacity of our smart algorithm to determine the credit score of excluded millions of MSMEs in the market, starting with Nigeria.
Every business has its challenges. We see every challenge or setback as a test to move to the next phase. One of the early setbacks we had was in October 2021 when we had an investor assure us of his commitment to absorb our current round fully. We had gone through all the usual processes and were confident that funds would come. Quickly, we went ahead to build demand pipelines for disbursement but unfortunately, the funds never came. This dragged into December and at some point, we were very low liquid-wise. By January 2022, we reactivated our funding cycle to the public and we have never looked back since then.
Success is in phases. My definition of success is twigged towards impact and adding value. I like to evaluate success based on how my decisions and efforts have made life better for me and everyone around my community. This obviously is a combination of many things and as such, would say it's step by step and in phases.
Trade Lenda was built to succeed and as such, we believe we would be the number one finance plug for trade and commerce by 2027 across Africa - providing value-added services to MSMEs within the emerging market region.
There is this saying, “Africa is the future”. I would, however, like to say that the future is here already meaning the dividends of Africa-focused entrepreneurs are already speaking for themselves. Africa has the population and the manpower. We only need to continue to do things right and soon the world would come knocking on Africa for solutions. Already it’s happening today!
Being a founder is much work and requires extra hours, however, I have learnt to cheat occasionally and give myself the needed rest. I equally know that I enjoy spending quality time with my family, so I intentionally create times to bond with them, for example, dropping the kids up and picking them up when in town.
Results and excuses do not go together, you can only have one. The potential impact (success) of our work on the society and economy keeps me going.
Hmm…Not sure If I have one in particular! I use various Apps at various times to support myself all the way. I can however mention a few like Google calendar which helps me have a seamless flow in planning each day’s activity.