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Category Archives: Opportunities

Dangote Still The Richest Personage In The Whole Of Africa!

aliko dangote

Alhaji Aliko Dangote has remained Africa’s richest man despite his losses to the devaluation of the Naira and drops in the demand for cement his largest asset.

According to Forbes margazine, Dangote was this “year’s biggest loser in dollar terms as his fortune dropped to $14.7 billion from $25 billion last year, propelled downward by a weaker Naira and shrinking demand for cement, his largest asset. He still retains the title of Africa’s richest man.

The country that has lost the most ground by far was Russia, which now has 88 billionaires down from 111, less than not just the US and China but now also Germany and India.

According to Forbes’ Inside The 2015 Forbes Billionaires List: Facts And Figures, Bill Gates is once again the richest person on the planet, a title he’s held for 16 of the past 21 years.

His fortune grew $3.2 billion since last year to $79.2 billion, despite a gift of $1.5 billion in Microsoft MSFT +0.66 per cent shares to The Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation in November 2014.

Carlos Slim Helu of Mexico comes in again at number two while revered American investor, Warren Buffett, took back the number three spot from Spain’s Amancio Ortega (now number four); not even the largest IPO in history was enough to beat the Oracle of Omaha this year.

Buffett was the list’s biggest gainer, up $14.5 billion to $72.7 billion, thanks to Berkshire Hathaway’s rising share price. Facebook’s Mark Zuckerberg moves up five spots to number 16, his first time ranked among the world’s 20 richest. Ma and three other Chinese are among the the biggest gainers and appear among the 50 richest on the list.

Zuckerberg is also the leader in a youth revolution that has minted 46 billionaires under the age of 40.

Youngest billionaire

“The youngest billionaire on the planet is Evan Spiegel, 24, co-founder of photo- messaging app Snapchat. California, driven by Silicon Valley tech companies, has spawned 23 new billionaires, including cofounders of car-hailing service Uber cofounders Travis Kalanick and Garrett Camp, and their first employee Ryan Graves. Elizabeth Holmes, who runs blood-testing firm Theranos, debuts on the global list as the youngest self-made woman at age 31. The state now has 131 individuals with 10-figure net worths, more than any other country besides China and the US.


“The year’s biggest loser in dollar terms is Aliko Dangote of Nigeria, whose fortune dropped to $14.7 billion from $25 billion last year, propelled downward by a weaker Nigerian currency and shrinking demand for cement, his largest asset. He still retains the title of Africa’s richest man.

The country that has lost the most ground by far was Russia, which now has 88 billionaires down from 111, less than not just the U.S. and China but now also Germany and India.

“One hundred thirty-eight people from the 2014 list dropped out of the ranks altogether including fashion designer, Michael Kors, Ukrainian President Petro Poroshenko, Zulily’s Mark Vadon and many Russians.

Guatemala has a billionaire for the first time, and Iceland returns to the ranks after a five-year absence, the result of a comeback by Thor Bjorgolfsson, who’s now the only billionaire in Iceland’s history.

UBA’S Tony Elumelu Lists Most Important Success Secrets…& How You Too Can Succeed!

Tony Elumelu

In your own words, who is Tony Elumelu?
I am a very family oriented guy. Of course, I have a very close knit nuclear family but I also regard friends and colleagues as part of my wider family. I am also a very loyal and committed person. I think these values stem from my Nigerian/African background I was born/bred/taught entirely in Africa! I am very proud of that fact. It demonstrates that it is still possible for people with humble backgrounds who work hard, dream big and have a desire for excellence to, with the help of God and a slice of luck, make it here in Africa.
I have built my businesses in this country and on this continent. I have also always thought that knowledge is fungible and very few things in life are new, so problems that seem insurmountable in Nigeria today are the same type of problems that have been solved in other climes. From that perspective, I am a globalist a man with a world view who seeks to learn from other environments and one who adapts solutions to his own peculiar circumstances/environment.

What were your dreams and aspirations at youth?
That’s a good question. I think I always wanted to excel and I have always been interested in business. I was also very interested in the economy and what made economies of nations work. That interest informed my choice of study at university I have, as you know, a first and a master’s degree in Economics. I was also very fortunate as my first place of work provided me with an opportunity to explore some of the notions and ideas I had read about in business magazines as a student. That is very important I believe. Creating and giving young people a safe and conducive environment to explore, learn and grow is one of the things we are trying to replicate with the Tony Elumelu Entrepreneurship Programme TEEP. Another key ingredient is mentorship. I had a great mentor who guided me and encouraged me to grow. Again, there is an element of that mentoring in TEEP. We basically want to create 10,000 more Tony Elumelus across Africa..

Is Nigeria better now than when you were growing up?
It is very different, that’s for sure. But the word “better” has a number of nuances. The period between 1970 and 1985 can be regarded as my formative years so if we are to draw comparisons one must look at Nigeria then and compare it to Nigeria today. In the early 1970s, Nigeria was emerging from a civil war and had just become a leading oil producing country at a time when oil was regarded as the new “gold”, following an abrupt 4-fold increase in the price of the product. We were governed by a Military regime (up until 1979) and the economy was largely dominated by foreign business interests. We also had a much smaller population. There seemed, prima facie, to be an abundance of opportunity and work. That is my recollection of that period at least until the first major oil shock in the early 1980s. The word “austerity” was introduced into our lexicon in 1983. Things changed thereafter but that period of change also resulted in the early stage liberalization of the economy, which increased opportunity for some indigenous businessmen.
Today’s Nigeria has some similarities with that period but the country has evolved a great deal. The economic space is much bigger the biggest in Africa for that matter. The size of the population is much bigger. The opportunities are more interesting but the challenges we face today are also much more complex.

What were the opportunities that challenged you into going into business?
My first major breakthrough was the acquisition of an insolvent/distressed bank in 1997 Crystal Bank Limited which we rechristened Standard Trust Bank. At the time, there were well over 100 banks in Nigeria as the sector had been newly liberalized. The capital requirement for a banking licence wasa large sum of money but insignificant when you compare it to the requirement for a license after the Soludo/consolidation reforms of 2004. In essence, the banking environment in the 1990s could be described as “volatile”. A number of the banks were weak and competition was very intense. We were lucky. STB went on to become the 5th largest in Nigeria prior to its merger with UBA in 2005.
More importantly, we were able, with the Crystal Bank acquisition,to demonstrate the importance of visionary, strong and focused management in the fortunes of a business. We also introduced a novel concept for this environment at the time called a debt for equity swap to help stabilize Crystal Bank. In essence, we asked some large depositors to show some faith and confidence in our team and vision by taking an interest in the new entity in lieu of their deposits. It worked and other management teams have replicated that formula with varying degrees of success since we pioneered it in 1997! The point I am making is that we tried a new thing in Nigeria but the idea itself wasn’t new. That philosophy is a running theme common to virtually all my business ventures.

How did it all start? When was your breakthrough?
We did the Crystal Bank acquisition I just talked about when I was 34. I was the youngest CEO of a banking institution at that time. I was full of energy and ideas. I was also very ambitious. Suffice to say, the journey started in earnest in 1997.

How early did you get involved in business?

You are now into many sectors of the economy. Is it by chance or were you motivated by government incentives?
I think Government will always be important in creating an environment that is conducive for business growth but incentives alone don’t make an unviable venture profitable or sustainable for the long term. Take our foray into power as an example. We would not have invested in the power generation business if Government had not decided first to privatize its power assets and encourage private sector participation. To that extent, Government policy and commitment were vitally important to that decision. However, our ongoing commitment to the power sector is motivated by the opportunities we see in that sector given the importance of power to an industrial economy or an economy which has aspirations of industrialization.

Your entrepreneurial internship is gaining momentum, what is the motivation behind it and how many young entrepreneurs have been groomed so far?
The Tony Elumelu Foundation Entrepreneurship Programme has been a long time coming. I have always been clear that entrepreneurship should be the driving force for transforming lives/societies at large in Nigeria and in Africa. I have also long believed that in order to secure the future of our people and our continent, we had to find a way to empower entrepreneurs to do more. My own path has been charted by that spirit of entrepreneurship. I want that same spirit to be more pervasive. That was the motivation for TEEP. We have decided to commit to supporting Africa’s budding entrepreneurs and by so doing, contribute our part to move Africa forward. TEEP is in the middle of accepting applications for the inaugural run, but in supporting 1,000 entrepreneurs each year, after 10 years we will have groomed 10,000 people and prepared them to help transform Africa.

What is this whole idea of Africapitalism?

Africapitalism is an economic development philosophy that seeks to redefine the private sector’s role in the growth and development of African economies and societies. Put simply, Africapitalism, as a philosophy, advocates long-term investment in strategic sectors of the African economy that have the potential to create economic prosperity and social wealth. It is a call-to-action for Africans to take responsibility for our own development and for non-Africans to rethink how best to channel their efforts and investments into the continent.

You’ve ventured into power can you achieve the same success as you have in hospitality and banking?
Absolutely! Let me add that we have also successfully drilled our first oil well; so it is now banking, oil & gas, real estates & hospitality. In my humble opinion, success is a result of drive, discipline and meticulous attention to detail. Those are qualities that can be applied to any sector. We have already seen some marked improvements in the operating performance of the Ughelli Power Plant generation has tripled since we took over 12 months ago and we have ambitions to generate at least 25% of Nigeria’s total power generationrequirements within the next 3 5years. In other words, we want to be regarded as a mainstay for the country in this most critical of sectors. That is an exciting and hugely responsible role to aspire to but that’s what Africapitalism means. We have to impact and meaningfully too! The journey ahead is exciting and by God’s grace will be worthy one for all. Thank you.

(c) Vanguard

Diamond Bank Rewards Mobile App Users in “A Thousand Reasons To Smile” Promo

Users of the Diamond Bank Mobile App are set for a swell time of rewards as the leading retail bank in Nigeria has finalised plans to launch a new promo tagged “A Thousand Reasons of Smiles”.

The promo is designed to reward customers as part of the celebrations that characterize the Yuletide season and will run between December 8, 2014 and January 7, 2015. It is open to customers in Lagos, Port Harcourt and Abuja who have up to N5, 000 credit balance and also perform up to 3 financial transactions on the app. The first 30 customers who register on the app daily and meet the first two criteria of credit balance and number of transactions would also be rewarded.

Diamond Mobile app, which was recently featured on CNN by popular TV host, Richard Quest has both financial and lifestyle features and is loaded with exciting features to make banking transactions better, faster and smarter. The mobile app enables customers to now search, book and pay for flights, send airtime to contacts on any mobile network and make credit card repayments, among other interesting features.

According to Ayona Trimnell, Head, Corporate Communications, the key objective behind the promo is not just to excite the customers, but to reward them for their loyalty especially at this festive time of the year and encourage them to take advantage of the opportunities that the mobile app offers.

She said: “Diamond Bank is at the forefront of electronic banking in Nigeria. The launch of our mobile app has added a lot of value to the way our customers transact their businesses. Users can now through the app do all their financial transactions.”

Speaking further, she noted that “through this promo, we want to deepen the experience of our customers and most importantly, reward them as a gesture of love in this festive period. The promo is open to both new and existing customers who have not yet registered on the Diamond mobile app. The first 30 customers who register on the platform everyday would get a reward.”

Make 1.2 Million Monthly, Hidden Secret Revealed

naira money

It’s the INFORMATION age coupled with the jet age. A lot of things have changed as against the old school ways. In the past, we were told to “go to school, secure First Class or Second Class Upper, get a good job, and you will live a good life.”

         In reality, this isn’t the case anymore. In the 1970s, 80s and even the 90s, the above statement was valid. You know why? Before you write your final exams, good companies would have lined up to employ you. The reason is obvious.

        There were lesser graduates then and there were
many Companies in Nigeria back then.

       But now, the reverse is the case. For this reason, many Young Nigerians have to find their square roots. Securing a First Class’ Degree is no longer a guarantee that you will have a dream job and live a great life. Fact!

       It’s the INFORMATION age and internet marketing is booming if you learn the ins and outs. Dozens of Nigerian youths have made names for themselves using the power of the internet. I am going to pick on some of these young Nigerians who are doing really great and expose their success secrets to you in this article.

        Their achievements in a single year is worth more than what an average Nigerian (take a banker who earns 200k/mnt as example) will earn in 5years. It’s amazing when you see young hardworking guys earning legitimately online.

       I can personally count a dozen of these guys that recently bought their first car or added another car to their garage. They all have a hidden secret! A positive one that you and i can explore to also achieve greatness soonest.

     There is a secret behind these young Nigerian Internet Marketers changing and Buying cars like t-shirts. Many wouldn’t reveal the hidden secret but, i will!

 Yahoo Yahoo? No!

       Funny enough, when you and i hear about making money online, the first thing that comes to mind is yahoo yahoo. You have been sold the lie! Because of the activities of criminals/ scammers online in the early years of the advent of Internet in Nigeria, many have mistaken anything online money making as scam or illegality.

 Genuine and Legitimate Internet Biz…

      If the owner of FACEBOOK, GOOGLE, TWITTER, FIVERR etc earns legitimate income online, Nigerians also earn Legitimate income online.

      The list of guys i have above include those YOUNG NIGERIAN NETPRENUERS who pride themselves doing legitimate, clean and profitable internet biz.

 What are these guys’ Secrets?

       They (we) are all into Information Marketing. Believe me or not, that’s theHIDDEN SECRET. Many of these guys don’t reveal this to you except you are smart enough to pick the idea by understudying them.

      You may want to ask “what is information marketing?”

       A quick search on google.com for the web definition gives Information Marketing as “The process of selling information-based products.”   

Take for example, you may create a simple 13page Information product (ebook) which teaches:

  •  how to get loan up to N200,000 from microfinance bank

  • how to import goods from abroad and sell for profit

  • how to satisfy your woman in bed

  • how to cure mouth odour

  • how to secure admission into foreign schools

  • how to make money watching football

(The funny thing is that you may not personally create any of the information product yourself)

 You’ll be rich!       

        Once you have the information product, a website in place and you learn different ways of advertising your information products to your target audience, a fraction of them will buy your information product and guess what? You’ll be rich!

       Take for example, i created a product “A-z of importation biz guide“.

        I sell for N6,500. I have a website where i sell it. In a month, i got 10,000 traffic to my website. Out of every 200 visitors to my website, i make a sale. In 10,000 visitors, i will make 50 sales. This means i can earn N6,500 x 50 = N325,000.

     What if i had up to 20,000 visitors to my website  in that single month? It means my income could double to N650,000.

What if i have 2, 3 or 4 different INFORMATION PRODUCTS i sell that bring that kind of result?

Can you now see how these guys earn good income online and change cars like t-shirt?


       These guys weren’t born with this knowledge that now fetch them good income online and make them live their dream lives.

       If you would love to learn all that INFORMATION MARKETING entails within the next 7days via my daily newsletter,

  • The Tricks,

  • The Strategies

  • The Technique and

  • The marketing skills

Hollandia Yoghurt Excites Customers With Fabulous Prizes

hollandia yoghurt promo

Winners in the ongoing Hollandia Yoghurt Refresh ‘n’ Win Promotion have applauded Chi Limited, maker of the yoghurt drink, for keeping to its promise of rewarding consumers who participate in the promo with various mouth-watering prizes worth millions in Naira.

The promo which started in December 2013, and will end on 28 February 2014, is aimed at promoting and deepening the market penetration of Hollandia Yoghurt across the country while also creating awareness for the brand’s value propositions. Till date, the promo has recorded tremendous participation from all parts of Nigeria with thousands of entries being sent in every day.

It is noted that consumers of Hollandia Yoghurt have started winning instant airtime recharge from major telecommunications service providers and prizes including iPads, iPhones, smart phones in weekly e –draws.

The Managing Director, Chi Limited, Mr. Deepanjan Roy says “ Hollandia Yoghurt Refresh n Win promo was conceived to reward the ever growing population of consumers across Nigeria that has made Hollandia Yoghurt their number one drink”.

Consumers are urged to participate in the promo by buying two 1-litre packs of Hollandia Yoghurt in any variant of Strawberry, Plain Sweetened or Pineapple Coconut to get one scratch card at the point of purchase. Alternatively, the consumer can buy two 500ml packs of Hollandia Yoghurt in any variant to get the scratch card at the point of purchase. The customer will then scratch the foil on the card to reveal a unique code. Consumers are allowed to participate as many times as possible.

To enter the promo, the customer is expected to text the unique code, along with other details such as state, name and age, to 30380. The text can be sent through any of the major networks including MTN, Glo, Airtel and Etisalat as well as CDMA networks at a cost of N10. Participants must ensure that the texts are sent in the right format of State (space) Code (space) Name (space) Age to 30380. Participants must keep the original scratch card with them and not throw it away. It is required to claim weekly or grand prize

Participants should ensure that the text is delivered and are advised to contact the promo helpline on 0700chivita for assistance whenever they find it difficult to either submit entries or claim winning prizes. He assured participants that it will take less than five minutes for them to get a response after sending the text while presentation of a form of identification and the original scratch card by prize winners will enable them to claim their respective prizes.

They can also visit the Hollandia Yoghurt Face book page to monitor progress on the promo and leave any message on the page to enable the company to provide a prompt response. A grand prize of a trip to London or Paris would be announced at the end of the promotion.

A cross section of satisfied consumers who expressed their views on the promo said the gifts are bonus on the tasty nourishment that they get from Hollandia Yoghurt which refreshes them inside and out.

Unable to hide her excitement, one of the lucky winners of an ipad, Pius Joy from Enugu, shares the story of how she won: ‘I have always loved the unique taste of Hollandia Yoghurt. When I saw the ad of the promo on TV, I said maybe this is my time. So I started scratching and texting. When I was invited for the draws, I didn’t believe that I will win but I still came. So, when I announced as one of the winners of an ipads . I was really shocked”

Mr. Doyinsola Winner from Abuja, the gift of a smartphone which he won in the second week of the promo has endeared him more to Hollandia yoghurt drink. “I was pleasantly surprised when I received a call from the company’s representative to come and collect the prize after I sent in my entry. At first, I thought it was a joke but after receiving the smartphone, I can only say that people should go out and buy more Hollandia Yoghurt so that they can also win prizes.”

Also, Kalagbor Ruhoma from Rivers says that now that she has won, she would not stop drinking Hollandia Yoghurt. “I used to drink Hollandia Yoghurt once in a while but now that I have won an ipad, I will drink more and more Hollandia Yoghurt until I win a trip to London. I have always dreamed of traveling to London”

The company representative also communicated that no money has to be paid to anybody to claim the prizes. He also request consumers not to get trapped in such problem, not to believe any text or call asking for money.

The promo is open to every Nigerian residing in Nigeria. Everyone in Nigeria is qualified to win. Everyone loyal consumer of Hollandia Yoghurt is entitled to participate.

Hollandia Yoghurt, the nourishing and refreshing drink, comes in variants of Strawberry, Plain Sweetened and Pineapple Coconut. It is available in supermarkets, shops and markets all over Nigeria.

10 Money Making Ways Now Now, From Your House With Little Or Nothing!

naira money

Information makes the difference between a poor and rich person. Explore 10 things you can do with little to change your life for better.

1.  Blogging – Owning a blog is big business these days in Nigeria thanks to the likes of Linda Ikeji. For those who don’t understand, blogging is simply an art of writing short articles about various sources of interest and publishing them online.

They can be about your personal life, the society, politics, entertainment, gossip or a combination of all of them. All you need is a computer, phone, laptop or tablet. You can start blogging within minutes and there are numerous articles on the web about how to start a blog. You earn money from blogs when you have a lot of visitors.

Advertisers see your visitors and can pay you top naira just to have their ads on your blog. People can earn between N50,000 and N2m per month by simply being a popular blogger.

2.   Use your skills or talent to provide a service – Businesses and individuals always have a need for some form of service every now and then. It could be laundry, taxi, cleaning, teaching, coaching etc. Making money from a service depends on the type of skill you have and how much people value it. For example, if you are good with maths, you can start a maths lesson in your neighbourhood for kids writing JAMB exams. If you are good at sports like football, you can start a coaching session for kids in your estate. Parents are willing to pay for these services when they see them. Do you like to write, then why not start guest blogging for a fee? By the time you write ten articles a week, you could earn enough to earn you that extra pay.

3.  Use your profession – As a lawyer, accountant or engineer working full time, it is not unlikely that your services may still be required on an ad hoc basis. You can provide these services at your spare time upon request in exchange for a decent fee.

4.  Own a business – Many Nigerians augment their income by owning businesses that they operate at home or in shops. Nothing stops you from doing this too. Some actually make so much money that they end up facing the business full time.

5.  Be a virtual assistant – Virtual assistants are people who are employed to remotely work from home or in any location that is not your typical office place. All you need is a laptop, Internet and telephone. It’s increasingly getting popular as a source of earning income for stay-at-home mums.

6.  Buying and selling – This involves petty trading of consumer goods. It’s time tested and still works quite well for many people. It is often better to start by selling things you are used to. It could be dresses, shoes, jewellery, smart phones, tablets etc. Your first customers will typically be your colleagues at work and members in church.

7.  Work weekends or on off days – If you have the strength to work an extra day or two, then why not try working at weekends for a few extra hours. You can take an extra job in places where weekend jobs are needed. Jobs that come to mind are ushering jobs, clubs and restaurants, teaching, singing, dancing etc.

8.  Start an online business – The likes of Facebook, Google and Amazon are all online businesses. Africa’s most visited website Nairaland is also an online business. And so is Jumia, Dealdey, Konga. Online businesses make money through advertisements on the websites, commissions or selling a product or service. To make money from an online business, you must either have a forum where people regularly interact, sell products or services people need etc. Most successful online businesses started from people’s bedrooms.

9.  Be a marketer – Being a part time marketer can involve selling products in exchange for a commission. If you are good at this, then why not help companies sell their products at your spare time? Network marketing is increasingly popular in Nigeria and a viable form of marketing.

10.  Be an agent – Agency jobs involve providing unique services for organisations. You can have a licence to clear products at the ports, sell air tickets or supply unique services or products. People who don’t have such licences can even rent them from you, providing an extra source of income.

This list is not exhaustive but I believe you get the drift. Always remember that to earn money from multiple income streams as an employee, you have to do things that you like and are also less expensive to start but have the possibility to grow. You must be nimble and able to adapt to change.

Avoiding career choices that won’t bring money


As Eze dropped his pen following his final year exams he felt a sense of relief that finally his ambition to be a banker was near.  He soon served in a bank and to his dismay counted money all day and night. The experience was torrid and disappointing. Not the fancy white collar smooth talking hunk he thought he’d be. After service, he had a job as an accountant in a small firm that paid a quarter of what his peers earned in a bank. It was supposed to be for a short period but as months passed he realised he had more time for himself and less pressure compared to his peers in the bank.

Soon it dawned on him, banking after all wasn’t his thing. The entry level job description for a banker during his time was not as attractive as it was a years before. Eze felt better suited for a smaller firm where he could play an active role in shaping its future. That to him was a good pay. Ten years after, he still thinks he made the right choice.

A lot of us choose careers that just don’t pay.  We find ourselves in situations where we can’t make the next move for fear of what the wicked cruel world may present. Sometimes, the money is great but job satisfaction is zero. Or the Job satisfaction and working condition is right but the pay is just not enough. It could be a hybrid of the two, good pay, job satisfaction is right but career development is impeded. You just feel stagnant and can’t move forward. Whatever the case, you are in a career that just isn’t paying.

Career decisions are mostly influenced by passion and a desire to replicate our unique experiences or emulate the careers of others. You may want to be a Doctor following a tragic occurrence that you helplessly couldn’t avoid. You could also choose to be a Lawyer because every member of your family is one. It could also be a career influenced by an innate talent. No matter the influences, the world today places realities that must be taking into consideration before you decide what career path to follow.

It is important to weigh up your taste and desires against the financial and mental requirements when deciding which career path to follow. What exactly do you want in life? Do you want to be rich? Poor? Or just happy and content with what you earn? Are you self-motivated and very career minded? Then certainly, the requirements for each career path differ in their sacrifices and expectations.

If you choose a career because it’s the only option or probably because that’s what everyone is doing, then surely, you don’t expect to grow rapidly. There is nothing you bring that’s radical enough to make you indispensable.  Agreed, there may be success but no innovation.

To be in charge of your future, then you must be self-motivated and innovative. Both require bravery and an uncanny attitude to be counterintuitive. You do not want to be the next Steve Jobs and remain in a paid job. Most people who change the world we live in tried, failed and tried again.

In contrast you could decide to live a modest life and choose to be a Teacher. Teachers, like the saying goes have their reward in heaven as such whoever decides to choose a career in academics should not expect to earn billions over night. You can’t love to splurge and remain a teacher can you?.

For Self employed freelance professionals such as web designers, tax consultants, real estate agents etc. your remuneration will often depend on your ability to put in many hours of quality work, satisfy a diverse and often-impatient customer base and an almost absolute dependability on references for marketing. Your connection in society and within your industry mostly influences your ability to command large pay cheques.

Understanding the income potential of the industry that your career path falls under is critical to your future financial independence. For example, whilst the music industry in Nigeria is “booming” the major source of income for artist is from brand endorsements and show performances. Record sales do not reflect on the bottom line and royalty is far from a constant source of future income. So as you pump in millions into making videos, it may also be wise to recruit an efficient PR team that will position you to attract brand endorsements.  Without that you’d just remain a “wannabe”.

If you desire to seek a career in politics then you must begin to keep your records clean early enough and have a near impeccable reputation as a community organiser. Maybe not in Nigeria of today but soon that will be necessary.

In the 21st century our careers and those we seek for our children or dependents must be able to command a commensurate financial and mental reward.  If you are in a difficult job but have no alternative then patience and perseverance is key. With time, you will excel.

Ugodre Obi-Chukwu

Turning your passion into profit

Wire works

Mr. Usiere Uko is the author of ‘Practical Steps to Financial Freedom’ and also the Organisational Capability Coordinator with Chevron Nigeria. In this article, he talks about how people can achieve financial freedom while following their passion.

Having been brought up to go to a good school, get good grades and get a good job, it may be a challenge to believe we can do what they really love, and make money doing it. We generally think in terms of getting a good job and making a good living. More often than not, what we are passionate about may not fit into our description of the best jobs in town. They are typically in the oil and gas industry, telecoms and once upon a time, the banking industry. Some jobs are attractive not for the base pay, but the perks and fringe benefits that go with them, both official and unofficial. We tend to go where the money is rather than where our passions lie and where we can make our unique contribution to society and the world at large. We start thinking about passion when the pain of job dissatisfaction finally gets to us. Passion becomes something we indulge in after work or after retirement.

Making money following your passion

I was discussing with a friend of mine, who I will call Mandy, two weeks ago.  She is a safety professional with one of the oil majors. I asked her what it is she is really passionate about. She told me she loves speaking to small groups of people, especially children and youths, motivating them to go for their dreams. She is not comfortable with the term motivational speaker, but she wants to work with people to help bring out their full potential. She is currently doing this in her church anytime opportunity presents itself. As a safety professional, I knew one of her core beliefs is the possibility that we can have zero incidents. So I gently asked her if it is possible to move to a job that fits with her passion, so rather than pursue her passion part time, she will get in her area of passion full time. She paused for some moments, and then said she has never thought about it. A big smile crossed her face as she began to ponder why not? I encouraged her to give it more thought and took my leave.

If you look around you, you will begin to find people making money following their passion. In the mid-eighties, a good course was a professional course and a good job was getting into the oil and gas industry or an accounting firm like Coopers. Footballers, musicians, comedians, movie stars were all poor people who took consolation in their celebrity status. Fashion designers were called tailors and seamstresses. It was not a job for graduates. You needed to be a doctor, lawyer, banker, accountant and engineer etc to be regarded in society. Sometime last year I watched Folake Folarin-Coker, founder of Tiffany Amber, being interviewed on the Patricia Show on MNET. The amiable talk show host asked her one interesting question: “You have such a nice name, why did you decide to use the name Tiffany Amber?”

Her answer made me laugh and almost made me cry. I could identify with the answer she gave. She is a trained lawyer, she said. She could not dare to let her dad know that after spending a fortune on her education abroad, she would turn around and ‘bring shame on the family’ by becoming a tailor, as fashion designers were then known to do. She had to go underground with her dreams, until it was safe it confess her “sins”. It was when she made it that she allowed her folks to know that Tiffany Amber is Folake their daughter.

Opportunities in all fields

That has since changed.   People are making it big in every field of endeavor. There is nothing under the sun that you are good at, that you cannot make it big in. The challenge comes when we focus on instant gratification and what we can get rather than what we can give. The most sustainable way to receive is to keep giving. The marketplace rewards based on the value bring to it, not how much you need or can take. The easiest way to give is to do what you are really passionate about, what excites you – makes you jump up in the morning and go to bed late. When you are passionate about what you do, you have energy and enthusiasm which propels you forward to be the best that you can be. Because you love what you are doing, you do it with your whole body, spirit and soul. Nobody has to push you. You are like fish in water. You stand a better chance to keep going when the going gets tough, because you enjoy the challenge. To succeed in the marketplace, you need to keep improving and keep going when others fall by the way side. When you finally push through, the money will come in abundance, way beyond what you would get sticking to what you hate ‘because the pay is good’.

Getting started

The best way to turn your passion into profit is to start from where you are right now, and start to move towards where you really want to go. If you work in a big organisation, you may be able to change jobs and get assigned to a job function that is more in line with your passion. You will become better energised to make impact in your organisation, and move a step further to make impact beyond your organisation, becoming a recognised expert in that field. If that cannot work in your current organisation, you can start doing that in your spare time and begin to make impact. Pretty soon, a door will open for you to go do it somewhere else or you may choose to quit your job and follow your dreams, if you have achieved financial independence while on your current job.

One step at a time

A common mistake people make is to try and figure out how to get there before they determine the destination and commence the journey. When you look at your desired destination, it may seem like mission impossible and discourage you from taking the first step. You don’t have to see the full picture before you take the first step.  You don’t have to wait till all traffic lights go green before you move. It does not work that way. Until you make the first move, certain things may not happen.  Just like using a candle to see your way up a flight of stairs in the dark, all you need is to be on the right staircase, and to see the next step. If you take it one step after the other, you will surely get to the top. All you need is the courage and resources to take the first step.

Limitless possibilities

A school teacher or university lecturer who is passionate about teaching and molding the future, loves the faculty and campus but is not happy with the pay can develop multiple streams of income by writing books, developing audio and video products, writing articles in their field, developing new learning systems and inventions among other things that will bring much more money than the salary from teaching alone. The possibilities are limitless. A lot of patents in the oil and gas industry are held by University Professors who have refused to leave academia because of the love and passion they have for teaching.

Time has proved that what you are passionate about can pay the bills and make you rich. Some folks refused to give up in the face of adversity and societal scorn and made a success of acting, music, fashion design, football, modeling, DJ, MC, security services, fast foods, transportation, mobile toilets, you name it. You can have it all. Life is too short to spend your working days working to pay your bills. Live a life of meaning and purpose. Make your unique contribution. Follow your passion and get rewarded beyond your wildest imagination.

Yes, you can save money on fuel


The pump price of fuel currently at N97.00 per litter is telling on the budget of many people and many homes particularly the small salary earners. To worsen the situation is the long hour’s motorists spend on the road because of poor traffic situation, and in the process use more fuel that ought not to have been used. Therefore, many are concerned about the heavy burden of fuel consumption on their budget, and have considered the option of dropping their cars for public transport.

But having seen that it’s not a possible solution given that it’s more of a necessity than luxury, the question now is: How can people save fuel on their car?

Experts say this is an interesting topic to address because people are upset over high fuel prices, but they often aren’t willing to do anything to change its effect on their bank account. Fuel is a large monthly cost for my wife and me, but will we stop using it? No. That wouldn’t be a plausible solution. There are, however, some other options to consider, says Pettersen, a financial expert said.

Better fuel mileage

Better yet, no fuel mileage? New electric cars have hit the market to mixed reviews; some recommend them, while others are quick to point out their flaws. There are several issues with electric cars, such as a lack of charging stations and the short duration of charges.

Hybrid cars use a combination of gas and electricity to power the vehicle. These can save significant amounts of gas, offering a great middle ground alternative. One downside is that these cars are expensive, and they’ll definitely take some time to pay you back at the pump.

Less driving

Public transportation comes in many forms. There are public buses, BRT Buses, /or subways. These are typically offered at a monthly rate and can save you a lot in fuel money. Saving money and not having to drive are some significant advantages. These alternate forms of transportation are only offered on a certain schedule, however, so you won’t be able to pick your exact travel times. Biking and walking can save money and are also excellent for your health.

Car pooling

Splitting up driving with coworkers or friends can go a long way. Instead of driving to work every day, why not find a coworker who lives nearby? This would save you half of the fuel it costs to go to work. It’s that easy. Though you’ll sacrifice some travel time freedom, it won’t be nearly as much as with public transportation.

You don’t have to limit ride shares to work, either; if you’re going to the same place as someone who lives nearby, it’s always more environmentally and fiscally intelligent to carpool.




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