I will be in Awka in October. Yes, I have accepted the invitation of the Vice Chancellor of Nnamdi Azikiwe University, Awka, Prof. Charles O. Esimone, to deliver a university-wide lecture in that institution named after the Zik of Africa, a Founding Father of modern Nigeria. The podium I will mount for this specific event has been graced by Prof Barth Nnaji, Senator David Mark, Dr Kalu Idika Kalu, Prof Chukwuma Soludo, Chief Emeka Anyaoku, Bishop Mathew Hassan Kuka, among others. To have my name is that league is simply amazing.
From Awka, I will touch base in Onitsha to challenge the OMATA members who continue to thrive, creating Africa’s largest market, despite institutional challenges across Nigeria. My message to them: band together, join efforts, push for scale to improve unit economics, and move upstream. We must create conglomerates and dominant category-king companies out of Onitsha. To do that, we must unleash entrepreneurial capitalism with the mindset of scaling capabilities over the rituals of “cultural trading”.
I like containers and am a proud member of this tradition, but we have to upgrade.