Lockdown Economy Nigeria in a Paint Production Company with Ojigbo Adeola

The interview was transcribed and adapted into an article by Timothy Matindi

Lockdown Economy: Interviews by think tank AlterContacts.org with real entrepreneurs sharing insights, challenges and successes during the COVID19 global pandemic to inspire, motivate and encourage other entrepreneurs around the world.

In this interview, we meet Ojigbo Adeola the CEO of Ades Super Quality Paint. Ojigbo Adeola is a specialist on paint production and the CEO of Ades Super Paint and has been in the business for over eight years. He described the COVID-19 Pandemic Era as a big challenge to most of the business parastatal as business slows down in both demand and supply. Adeola Clearly stated that in his business during the lockdown many strategies were introduced and shared with co-workers to ascertain the continuous existence of his business. His organization found it difficult to continue the daily business transaction during the lockdown, as the movement was restricted across the country.

Watch the video version of the interview.

What you do as a business.

Ojigbo Adeola: Thank you very much. My name is Ojigbo Adeola, and I have a lot of things to be doing as a business. I specialise in paint production, and services and selling.

How long have you been in this business?

Ojigbo Adeola: I’ve been in the business for 8 years, since 2012.

Where exactly is the location of your business?

Ojigbo Adeola: The business location is Owo, Ondo State, Nigeria.

Do you have any employees?

Ojigbo Adeola: At present, I have 12 employees working for me.

You know you haven’t told us what your business name is, because I believe people out there would want to know your business

Ojigbo Adeola: Sorry for that, the name of my business is Ades Super Quality Paints, and we are into many types of paint. We are into emulsion paints, we are into lens coat, we are into test coat paint, we are into screening paint, we are also into Satin Paints. So these are the products that we have for now, and that is just about the products, and once again the name of the products is Ades Super Quality Paints.

How many clients do you normally have?

Ojigbo Adeola: Yes, we normally have, you know I take records of our clients, and we do have up to 100 clients.

That is very interesting, is that 100 for a day or in total?

Ojigbo Adeola: In total, you know we are just starting, we started in 2012 and we started fully now 4 years back. 2016 we started a small scale business, that is why it is just like that.

What did you do on the business front during the lockdown?

Ojigbo Adeola: This Covid 19 has destroyed the economic sector of Nigeria and which everyone has been inside too and in the period, many people think that this is the stopping point for the business, and I think that I can’t take this as the stopping point, let me just take this as a point of challenges, and what are the ways for me to overcome these challenges is just that I need to go somewhere and sit down and re-strategize, synergise together with my staff. I have some executives in my workers so that we do things together we listen together. So we see things…. OK, this is not the period of re-strategizing, we have to now re-strategize now, with the help of this Covid 19 season, and we have tried to upgrade ourselves and by some months now we are bringing out our new and improved products. So these are things that we have taken as challenges and chosen to overcome the pandemic.

That is very, very interesting. That means that in order to stimulate the business and to attract customers you were able to re-strategize.

Ojigbo Adeola: Yes.

During your re-strategizing, what worked out and what didn’t?

Ojigbo Adeola: There are a lot of challenges in this business. As a businessman, as an entrepreneur, you know you have to face many difficulties, face many challenges in terms of business. And so there is no movement in terms of that researching, there is no movement — You have to be online researching, you know the cost will be somehow expensive, and after the cost, we have tried a little practice, it failed, we tried until we got our good result. These are things that are part of things a strong worker, but we thank God we later came to the final answer, and it is now working fine.

Were thinking of taking your time off, and what was your thinking behind the decision taking your time off?

Ojigbo Adeola: Yes, my thinking behind the decision is very simple — It is just that when we see the pandemic disease as a period everybody will be at home and our product is not an edible product, you get. The product does not get spoiled easily, so you can just keep it there. I told you I have an executive team out of my workers so that we brainstorm together. They are the engine of the company, so we brainstorm together. Let us keep these products, think of new things.

Sorry Sir, sorry for the technical issue, please can you come again sir?

Ojigbo Adeola: Yes, I said with the help of my team, and because our product is not an edible product, it does not expire, it does not get spoiled easily, so we kept the product in the factory where now we strategize and bring out a new improved product that can attract and stimulate people. This Covid 19 season is just a limited time, we know that very soon everything will be out and the thing will just roll out like that, and these are things we are now trying to put in place, and to get where we want to get.

How is your business going right now?

Ojigbo Adeola: Well, we thank God, because it is not easy, but we are hoping for better. We are thanking God with the strength God gives us we have been trying to do miraculously. Before the Covid-19, we do [inaudible], but we still continue forging ahead.

Do you know how your customers and competitors are doing right now?

Ojigbo Adeola: Me I am just thinking about customers and competitors… Let us talk about customers. Customers need products, and we are here to give them the best. So these are part of the things we have said we have synergised this season as enabled us to start ourselves and think what to do to attract [inaudible]. This is a business so I have to strategize, [inaudible] let me give out the best of my products, let me give out the best [inaudible] to have access to the products, to make these products pocket friendly. So if I have that I think I am good.

Do you have a means of getting feedback from your customers?

Ojigbo Adeola: Yes. I’m sorry to digress from what we are just saying I just want to fix something. I studied computer science, and when you write a programme there was always a space for a comment. So in anything we do, we always put a space for a comment. So that comment, we gather the comment like a questionnaire of the people. After 2 or 3 months and work on it as a team. So this is what people think. That is why I said with the help of the Covid 19 has helped us to sit ourselves down to re-strategize to get a new improved because of their comments towards the product. So now we have new and improved projects which we are going to launch in the next year 2021. So that is just about the …. And we have their [telephone] numbers, you know when they came to our factory we took their numbers, we took their details so [inaudible] to keep our relationship with them. We message them “Stay safe, stay precautious of Covid 19, e.t.c”; we let them know we are still together. We make sure our mutual relationship does not get spoiled. So these are the things we have been doing [inaudible].

In your business, what is the outlook on the coming few months?

Ojigbo Adeola: Yes. The coming next month, that should be December, Ades Super Quality Paints have deemed it fit partner with [inaudible].

In every business, we have things we need and want. Can you please name three things that you need to help you with your business?

Ojigbo Adeola: Let me categorise the 3 things into 1 — Resources, and here resources are money. We are planning to have a large scale business, so we need support, we need people to come and patronise those resources [inaudible], we need support. So, because a product [inaudible] in which people [inaudible]. So we need support, we need people to ascribe to our product.

Thank you very much, Mr Ojigbo Adeola, we believe publicity is very paramount in every business because a business you want to promote you have to go for advertisement and all that.

I want to thank the CEO of we Ades Super Quality Paints, we really appreciate you.

About the Guest

Ojigbo Adeola hails from Owo Local Government, Ondo State, Nigeria. He is the CEO of Ades’ Super Quality Paint, He is into the production of paint, sales and services provider also he is the initiator of team Adexcool Supremacy, it’s a forum that assists the youth to get to the peak of their careers.

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The UN-registered nonprofit social initiative that helps small businesses and self-employed professionals to overcome the challenges of the pandemic.