You don’t need much to start a business. All you need is information that will keep.you grounded in your pursuit for a breakthrough in the labour market.
My guest, Ayodele Ognin, is a financial management expert. She shared what it takes to run a business with little or no cash.
It is good to have you here, Ayodele, all the way from Benin Republic. So can we get to know you better?
I am Ayodele Ognin, 29 years old. I am from Benin Republic. I have an MBA in Financial Management with 7 years working experience in Finance, Banking, Microfinance, Asset Management and Private Equity before founding my own company – WURAMI CONSULTING, a year ago.
Your career sounds really interesting. I am eager to know how it all started and what led you into creating your own firm?
Oh, Thank you!
It’s GOD’s plan. It all started in the Bank, seeing challenges women face to get Loans or defend their project to get finance. I decided to create a firm that can help Managers develop their businesses with a special focus on business managed by women. We started with Financial Literacy and Business Management Training skills.
I am always happy to see women challenging the status quo. So I must admit that – I am proud of you. What problems have you solved since your company started?
Thank you, Chinedu!
The major problem is in the management of the company. Most of the time, women think they need more money or loan to develop their business, what we do is to help them in the management and restructuring, so that we can reduce the charges, work on strategy to make more money, work on their value proposition and business model, and grow the business without asking for a loan.
Secondly, when loans are needed, we work on the business project to ensure that the business plan is well structured, that gives them more chances to get a loan. With the AFDB project to finance women with AFAWA, we make sure that the women we work with have their financial and everything needed by banks ready.
Thirdly we do financial literacy and women empowerment for the less privileged women. We teach them how they can start little businesses, like soap, méat pie, cleansing services and also we focus on they core competencies. For example, a woman that like cooking is oriented in catering, the one with talent in hair, go to hair business and so on.
We have trained till date, 2800 women in rural area, generally, 15000 people – youth and women.
That’s really a huge impact you have made. How easy is it to obtain loan from your company and at what interest rate?
We don’t do loans, we work with financial structure that we direct our customers too. But our objective is to grow the business without having to borrow. We also have an association called Women Impact Network, where we borrow little money for women in our community.
But for now, we don’t have the government authorization, so we will avoid to communicate on that side. Training is our main competencies
What steps have you taken to get the government authorization?
That is another project, a second business – Wurami Finance. It is a microfinance institution that we introduced a 3 months ago but it will take up to a year or two to get the authorization
I strongly believe that it will work out. Being a woman, how challenging is it to run an organization?
Challenges come with everything but when you can differentiate between what you want from what you need, GOD makes the rest easy. People will always make certain propositions to get you distracted, or sometimes they look down on you because of the age, but when you stay focused on you, show professionalism and stay firm to your value, you will overcome everything. When you also have the support of your family, you get good advice that will help you on the matter.
From your question, ”Being a woman, how challenging is it to run an organization?”
I can’t really answer that question because we don’t know how challenging it is for men. We are all used to certain gender challenges since younger age, today we don’t see it as a challenge anymore, we compose with it.
That’s just the best way to look past it.
What goals do you set to achieve with your organization this year?
To train 10000 women entrepreneurs in partnership with different organizations this year.
That’s huge. What’s your website and social media handles should in case anyone wants to contact you?
They can reach out to me here:
Facebook: Ayodele OGNIN
Where do you see your organization in the next five years?
I see myself being listed amongst the Top 10 CONSULTING Firm on the Continent, and be the first in every Business Woman mind.
With much dedication and passion, you are almost there.
Thank you for your time. Have a wonderful year ahead.
AMEN. Thank you very much Chinedu and the Tekedia crew.