‘Start-up owners must believe in Nigeria to scale their businesses’
The Chairman, Zinox Group, Leo Stan Ekeh has disclosed that budding entrepreneurs and business owners, whether technology or others, must retain a level of belief in Nigeria in order to scale their businesses.
Ekeh affirmed that growing a business in Nigeria’s peculiar business environment requires the essential ingredient of a firm faith in the country.
He made this disclosure at The Kingdom Summit 2019, an International Marketplace and Leadership Conference organized by the Redeemed Christian Church of God in Lagos with the theme – From Business Person to Nation Changer.
“You must not be discouraged by the challenges you face in business today. Also, you must not allow people discourage you with their negative projections. You must have faith in Nigeria in order to grow your business and scale. As a matter of fact, before I started out in business during undergraduate days in India and after my post-graduate in Cork City, I was clear that I was going to return to Nigeria,’’ he stated.
The forum, which, was at the auspices of the Director-General, Budget Office of the Federation and Provincial Pastor, RCCG, The King’s Court, Ben Akabueze, it had in attendance the Vice President of Nigeria, Prof. Yemi Osinbajo.
Furthermore, Ekeh cautioned start-up owners from falsification of data in order to hood-wink potential investors.
“I see a lot of start-ups brandishing false figures and falsifying data in order to deceive investors to part with their money. There are a few high-profile instances of such here in Nigeria. Such a practice is highly dangerous and if you indulge in it, you will surely pay for it. A lot of business owners see it as a smart way of raising funds but your integrity is at stake.
“If you lose your integrity, you have not just lost all, but you have also destroyed others in same economy and you will pay dearly for it. In 21st century, there is a strong connection between wealth and spirituality. The way you made your money comes with eternal pain or pleasure.
“I see a lot of rich people that excites young people are in Hell on earth but you may not know. Wealth is now a right for both the children of the poor and the rich, but more kids from poor homes have better intelligence, energy and spirituality to challenge the status quo.
“Some of you just start out in business and decide to buy flashy cars or fly First Class as a status symbol. What you fail to remember is that the difference between an Economy Class ticket and a First Class ticket, your business may not be able to achieve it as profit in one year,” Ekeh declared.
“You must incubate and go through the process before you scale. When I started out, I used to sleep in my office. Before my staff resumed, I was already up so they did not know I used to sleep there. I also ate once a day at Sheraton hotel, normally the afternoon buffet. This is part of the price I paid to succeed.”
Continuing, Ekeh affirmed that the current generation of entrepreneurs have all it takes to achieve within five years what the older generation strive to build in 30 years.