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Lugard E. Aimiuwu: Exit Of A Marketing Icon



Chief Lugard Aimiuwu, Osayuwanoba

HOW does one start writing about Chief Lugard Aimiuwu, Osayuwanoba of Benin Kingdom and the immediate past president of the National Institute of Marketing of Nigeria who passed on in the early hours of Thursday, April 16, 2015 after a brief illness at the age of 69.

Chief Aimiuwu was a very rare asset, whose uniqueness derives from the positive attitude, versatility and the richness of his diverse exposure and background.

He was the pioneer President and Chairman of Council of the Chartered National Institute of Marketing of Nigeria following a unification process, which he led, that successfully integrated the erstwhile irreconcilable factions. He was also the start-up President and Chairman of Council of the Nigerian Institute of Management following the granting of charter status to the Institute, an organisation whose strategic transformation he led most admirably.

He combined an uncommon insight into the African psyche and traditional values with cutting edge professionalism in ultra-modern management disciplines. He was a senior traditional chief of timeless Benin Kingdom, and an internationally renowned Transformation Strategist and Planner.

Aimiuwu was an Emeritus President, University of Lagos Alumni, as well as Chairman UNILAG Faculty of Business Transformation Committee, Boardroom veteran of 25 years, and has been Board Chairman of a number of companies, including Research International, Market Trends Limited and Admiral Insurance Limited. He was also President, Insurance Directors’ Association of Nigeria (IDAN) and Chairman Soaps and Detergent Group, Manufacturers Association of Nigeria.

His management career, within Shell and Unilever, mainly in Nigeria and also the United Kingdom, was in very competitive and contrasting market environments, and took him to over 200 overseas operations across continents. Career positions held include Marketing Planner, Chief Buyer, Supplies Controller, Planning Coordinator, Marketing Director, Sales Director, Personnel Director, Agribusiness Director, Projects Director, etc. The unmistakable imprints made in each position confirm his versatility.

Aimiuwu graduated in Business Administration from the University of Lagos, where he was the first recipient of the Dr. Shodeinde Prize “for the best student in the university”. As a young manager, he also won a place in a competition among managers to represent Nigeria at the HRH Duke of Edinburgh’s Commonwealth Study Conference in Canada (1980). His post-graduation management training included Executive Programmes at Amos Tuck School of Business Administration at Dartmouth, New Hampshire, USA, and Ashridge Management College, UK, plus over 100 overseas courses. He supported his alma mater, UNILAG, in various roles including, Governing Council Member; Chairman Development/ Endowment Board etc. He was Member Board of Trustees, Ijebu-Ode Grammar School Old Boys Association.

A professional to the core, he had considerable experience in the promotion and development of professionalism and best practice in Management, Marketing, HR, Logistics, and Planning with special focus on emerging markets. He was a Fellow of the Chartered Institute of Personnel Management, on whose Governing Council he served. He was also a Fellow of National Institute of Marketing of Nigeria, Nigerian Institute of Management and Institute of Operations Research.

Aimiuwu was a much sought-after resource person by professional institutes, the university system, the corporate world, both local and international, plus public sector institutions and organs. He served on federal inter-ministerial committees, chaired Federal Tertiary Institution Visitation Panels, rendered advisory and training support to private and public sector organs and executives, and chaired several community-based groups and project committees.

He was passionately committed to human development, especially young talent development, and was Grand Patron to dozens of youth associations in the university system and elsewhere. Aimiuwu was a recipient of National Honour of OON.

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