HOW FREE IS FREE TRADE

The period between the ages of 13 and 16 years in the life of a male child and between the ages of 11 and 14 years in the life of a female child is a period when parents should brace up to their parental duties to ensure that their wards grow up to become responsible citizens and adults. This period known as puberty is when sexual maturity occurs. This maturation is evidenced in females by the onset of menstruation, in males by the production of semen, and in both by the enlargement of their respective reproductive organs. Rapid growth occurs and is marked by a range of physiological changes. Various secondary sexual characteristics also appear for the first time during puberty; in males, production of body hair increases markedly, particularly in the pubic, axillary and facial regions, and the voice usually changes and becomes deeper in tone. In females, hair also appears in the pubic and axillary regions, and the breasts become enlarged.
Just as the parents are expected to brace up to their responsibilities, children also have major roles to play to ensure that they become the responsible adults the society expects them to be. In the first instance, children must accept that they need proper guidance and must deliberately follow wise counsel. Discreetness is a vital virtue for any child to covet. There is a popular Yoruba adage that says “ti iṣu ẹni ba ta, a fi ọwọ bo jẹ ni”, it simply means that if one’s yam sprouts healthy tubers, one is expected to discretely consume it. To contextualize this, using a girl going through puberty as a case study when she suddenly realizes that she is growing bigger and experiencing some unusual sensations in certain sensitive parts of her body, the wise and sensible thing to do is to become more discreet in the manner she carries or throws herself around particularly in the presence of the opposite sex so as not to attract the kind of attention that she may not be able to manage. For the sake of emphasis, any relationship that is consummated between a man or a matured boy and a girl going through puberty based on the girl’s new-found looks is unwholesome and can only lead to trouble. Like my people the Yorubas will say “ere kini aja nba ẹkun se”, meaning what kind of a relationship can exist between a dog and a tiger, except for one being the eaten and the other the eater.
Still dwelling on the above analogy, value appreciation is pivotal to resource optimization, so it is almost certain that one will most likely waste a resource that one does not know the actual worth of. According to British economist David Ricardo, analyzing the essence of comparative advantage in free trade, said that some nations lacked an absolute advantage in the production of any commodity. However, even these nations could gain from free trade if they concentrated on producing commodities in which they had the smallest disadvantage. One thing is clear, Africa cannot all of a sudden become industrialized; the reality as it is today is that Africa’s comparative advantage is in the area of supply of raw materials. The continent by the benevolence of God is the biggest producer of some of the raw materials for the production of most products in the world today. Consequently, Africa should take cognizance of its strengths and weaknesses so as to ensure that it always gets a good deal in return for the raw materials it’s able to bring to the market.
I am a member of what is known as the Borderless Alliance in West Africa and just finished our third annual conference with the theme, ‘’Enabling Growth”, so I thought it will be both interesting and instructive for us to examine in this edition of IWA some of the issues that were deliberated on which brought to the fore the need for and the efforts being made to remove all barriers to trade within West Africa. In addition, among other very interesting stories that we have complied for you, we also had the privilege of interviewing the Tanzanian High Commissioner to Nigeria, His Excellency Daniel O Njoolay, and he shared his thoughts on the need for Africans to do more business amongst themselves, according to him we have the population which is a large enough market to exploit just as countries such as China and India did for formidable trade growth. It is the only way African trade alliance can blossom. All these are packaged for your pleasurable reading as I welcome you to another year of great exploits as we transverse the great African landscape. I want to thank you so much for your commitment to IWA.

TRADING SENSE

My mother is from Ijebu, a town in Ogun state, south west Nigeria, where the people are generally noted for being astute business men and women with the propensity to save and conserve funds. I guess that is the reason my mum has always exhibited what I consider a never-give-an-inch posture, while haggling to buy anything. Unfortunately, I have turned out to be a weak negotiator because I seem to have failed to imbibe this very potent trading trait which is arguably a standard practice through which most people arrive at mutually agreed price for goods and services in Africa.
Since goods and services will always have to be exchanged, it is expedient for every human being to at least develop a level of trading skill. However, going by the trend in the international trading landscape, Africa and Africans has continued to fall short in this regard. Undeniably, several individuals’ particularly African leaders acquired stupendous wealth from being slave traders. Tinubu square, a commercial centre in today’s Lagos, Nigeria, is named after a major nineteenth century slave trader, Madam Tinubu who rose from a humble background to become a very wealthy woman and later one of Nigeria’s pioneering nationalists.
In evaluating this illicit trade and the state of trade in Africa today one cannot but ask oneself if Africa derived any socio-economic gain from slave trade and how far did the illicit trade impact on the social economic lives of Europeans, either positively or negatively? It is also imperative to carefully examine and ascertain if the quality of the goods and services that Africa is currently parading in the world market the very best she can offer? We also need to ask ourselves if the people we have put forward as leaders and negotiators are the best we can offer.
Africa is evidently holding on to the ‘short end of the stick’, as regards international trade, she deserves and can get much more than she is getting in exchange for her goods and services if only she can brace up and get sensible in the way she trades with the rest of the world.
Just like yesterday, IWA is five and as team leader I can confidently say that we are better prepared to face the next five years, having seen the good, the bad and the ugly sides of the publishing world in Africa, particularly in Nigeria where we are situated. As part of our plans to commemorate the fifth anniversary and in fulfillment of our commitment to you to always deliver good value for the money you invest in purchasing IWA, we had planned a flag off of another value adding product from our stable which we have tagged African Home Front Forum (AHFF), at the close of 2013 but have had to rescheduled the flag off to the beginning of the second quarter of 2014. We are also rebranding the tourism segment of IWA to be manned by a very experienced editor, Mr. Tayo Adelaja as well as also bringing on board an interesting contributor in the person of Laila St. Matthew – Daniel.
2013 was certainly an eventful year, but to my mind the most remarkable of the things that happen was the death and burial of “Madiba”, Nelson Rolihlahla Mandela, who because of the sacrificial life that he lived was probably one of the most celebrated Africans that ever lived, thus we are featuring some of his most popular quotes while on earth as well as some snap shots of some of the celebrities that attended his burial in this edition. On the cover page we decided to beam our search light on how Africa has continued to allow very careless poaching of elephants in her savannahs and forests such that they have become graveyards rather than the sanctuaries that they use to be for elephants. The release of this edition into the market is also likely to be to be slightly late because I attended the Calabar Festival and I am so glad to report that the government and people of Cross River state Nigeria have kept fate with what is today regarded as the biggest street party in Africa.
I will like to use this auspicious time to thank our ardent readers and customers for their unflinching support for IWA in the past five years for without you there won’t be us, so we thank you. I pray that GOD will continue to bless your various businesses. I will also wish you compliment of the season and may the New Year bring lots of goodness into our different homes. Salute!

SWEET MOTHER

HUMAN BEINGS are distinguished by one appellation or the other. It becomes more interesting such that with maturity comes more appellations. For instance one can be a child and at the same time a father and as well as a husband. The most important thing to note is that all these appellations come with their attendant responsibilities.
Perhaps the importance of ‘responsibility’ informed the perspective of my people – the Yorubas, from the western part of Nigeria, in customarily referring to an offspring who has continued to behave in a manner that is not in consonance with the norm as being an ‘omolasan’- literarily, a worthless child! Someone unworthy of the appellation, ‘offspring’. You are also likely to hear my kinsmen say about a person that is generally cantankerous, ‘Ko n se eniyan’, which literarily means he or she does not deserve to be referred to as a human being. And in the case of a person married to a woman that is ill-mannered, they will simply tell him ‘oo ti ni Iyawo’ literarily meaning ‘you do not have a wife yet’, because as far as they are concerned, a wife who acts in a manner unbecoming should not be considered as a wife. This will also apply to a husband whose ways are inconsistent with the responsibilities required of that role.
I attended a wedding ceremony recently and I was having so much fun until the young comedian who compered the ceremony, jokingly said that the part of the evergreen Nico Mbaga’s song, ‘sweet mother’, that says, the mother will not sleep or eat if the child does not eat, was no longer applicable to today’s mothers. Whilst his pun was accompanied by laughter from people around me, it caused me to reflect, albeit with trepidation and sadness on whether the mothers of today cared less than those of yore. Surely this was no joking matter!
As such, after the ceremony, I decided to take a closer look at today’s mothers and the fact that it appeared, to my dismay, that I could identify some who appeared more preoccupied with themselves and generally with other things than they are with their children. I even became more worried when my enquiries elicited a peculiar response from a lady who asked me why I thought the woman is/was better positioned to take care of the child than the man. Is this a general supposition or simply an isolated stand point?
In any event, I am humbled by the extraordinary bond that exists between the mother and child, right from when Gestation occurs in the woman’s uterus from conception until the fetus (assuming it is carried to term) is sufficiently developed to be born. Usually, once the baby is born, the mother produces milk via the lactation process. The mother’s breast milk is the source of anti-bodies for the infant’s immune system and commonly the sole source of nutrition for the child for a while. With this nature of bonding, should there be any dispute about the important role that the womenfolk play in the development of the child and by implication, the human race?

THANKSGIVING DAY!

NELSON ROLIHLAHLA MANDELA was born on the 18th of July,1918, so in a couple of weeks, ‘Madiba’, fondly referred to as the father of the South African nation will be ninety five years old. Like most people in his age bracket, his health has not been in the best of state. His condition however deteriorated recently which has seen him, in and out of the hospital to the extent that he has now been confined to intensive care at the Medi-Clinic Heart Hospital in Pretoria, South Africa, for the past few weeks. As to be expected, news peddlers all over the world are trying to take advantage of the situation, churning out all sorts of news, most of which are not very pleasant and as such may have become disturbing to his family, who are obviously dealing with so much pain over the state of the legend himself who also happens to be a husband, father, grandfather, great grandfather, etc.
My people always say that the bigger one’s head is, the more the head aches, so I am not really surprised, the world is literarily standing still for one of the greatest Africans living today and probably Africa’s most illustrious son. I agree that there is no way I can feel the exact pains of the family because I am not family, but I am an African who loves and admires this man who did not just say- “For to be free is not merely to cast off one’s chains, but to live in a way that respects and enhances the freedom of others”, but has also lived these words. In my opinion it’s time to take a cue from one of ‘Madiba’s books; ‘My long Walk to Freedom’ which says: “I am fundamentally an optimist. Whether that comes from nature or nurture, I cannot say. Part of being optimistic is keeping one’s head pointed toward the sun, one’s feet moving forward. There were many dark moments when my faith in humanity was sorely tested, but I would not and could not give myself up to despair. That way lays defeat and death.”
I see today as ‘Thanksgiving Day’, with the world collectively acknowledging that my hero has fulfilled his destiny. ‘Thanksgiving Day’, by definition is a day set apart for giving thanks; however those who are able to rejoice the most on ‘Thanksgiving Day’ are those who, in spite of all the odds are able to reap bountifully. Success usually does not come on a platter of gold; it’s only the fittest that survives in today’s world. Nonetheless, ‘Madiba’, in another quote of his, emphasizing the fact that success is possible for all, said that “It always seems impossible until it’s done”,
A lot of African Leaders have lived and died but none, and I stand to be corrected, has ever received this kind of global attention, accolades and empathy that this great African commands.
I am not sure that ‘Madiba’ himself bargained for this kind of over whelming recognition for the contributions he has made to the freedom of his people, he said, and I believe; “I have walked that long road to freedom. I have tried not to falter; I have made missteps along the way. But I have discovered the secret that after climbing a great hill, one only finds that there are many more hills to climb. I have taken a moment here to rest, to steal a view of the glorious vista that surrounds me, to look back on the distance I have come. But I can only rest for a moment, for with freedom come responsibilities, and I dare not linger, for my long walk is not ended.”
I, like most people in the world, send my prayers and heartfelt best wishes to ‘Madiba’, his immediate family, friends, government and the entire people of South Africa at this sober time and want them to really see that it’s time for Thanksgiving!

MY CONDITIONAL LOVE

The love story of Romeo and Juliet, particularly the tragic death, is undoubtedly very popular but I dare say that most people do not know or ever address their minds to the fact that the death of the two lovers actually brought about the abrupt end to the long drown enmity between their two families- the Verona’s and the Montague’s.
Since love is said to come without limits and is expected to exist in highly committed relationships; between mother and child, family members, fraternities, comrades in arms, etc, then what existed between Romeo and Juliet can easily be termed ‘unconditional love’, at least for the little time it lasted.
The love that exists between parents and their children appears to rank most significant and arguably the strongest of relationships. As such, the term, ‘unconditional’ will be most apt in describing the love shared; at least when the children are in their infancy. The truth is, as the child grows up, the love of the parents and its manifestation will depend largely on the active participation of both the parents and the child. My people will say that it is the child that shows the willingness to be carried by stretching out his or her hands that will be carried.
I have continued to critically consider what we all refer to as ‘love’ and I have come to the conclusion that people always love for one reason or the other, whether the reason is obvious or not. In comparison to other couples who can boast of decades of their formal union, I probably do not have enough experience in marriage but with humility and a heart full of thanks, I can say that my marriage has worked so far. The truth is, long before I got married to my wife, Oluwaremilekun Adegoke Adeyemo, it was clear to my mind that I needed to be true to myself; ‘love is not cheap’. If I want her to love me, I must be ready to love her. It is for this reason that I have also continued to plead with her to help me to love her. As it will be foolhardy for me to think that she will continue to love me even if I refuse to fulfill my own part of the deal. In the same manner it will be difficult for me to really love her if she refuses to fulfill her part of the deal.
The African Union (AU) as in the case of the earlier institution known as the Organization of African Union (OAU) was formed to promote continental peace, unity, and cooperation. Although the Organization has over the years helped to strengthen ties among African nations and settle disputes, it is still faced with many problems that have undermined its ability to achieve its goals. In the same manner, the Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS), as founded in 1975 to encourage economic, social, and cultural development in West Africa has also continued to battle with its countless challenges. Apart from these two organizations there other organizations, treaties and agreement that Africans have gone into to foster a united Africa but Africa it is not yet to unite. Maybe one of the things we need to come to terms with is the fact that GOD, for reasons best known to Him decided to spread the “milk and honey” in Africa across the continent. Simply put we need each other to survive and we cannot just walk across or over our neigbours to get what we want. Love cannot be taken for granted! Neighbours or relatives will not just love themselves just because they are neighbours or relatives. For us to have peace and development in Africa, I recommend my kind of love – ‘conditional love’. All hands must be on the deck for we all must continue to work very hard at integrating the continent from all fronts in order for all of us to bountifully reap from the harvest of the land.

Mutual prosperity at the heart of the UK’s partnership with Africa

The United Kingdom continues to promote the merits of Nigeria and the broader African continent as an economic partner of choice ahead of the UK’s upcoming Africa Investment Summit taking place in London in January 2020. These comments were made by the UK High Commissioner for Nigeria, Catriona Lang at the 18th edition of the Nigeria Oil & Gas Conference in Abuja (NOG) on July 2nd, 2019.

The three-day conference themed “Promoting Investment & Collaboration in Nigeria’s Oil & Gas Industry” is one the most well-attended industry events in the country and was meeting place for senior decision makers from government and energy industry organisations in Nigeria.

The guest of honour, UK High Commissioner to Nigeria, Catriona Lang, in her goodwill speech at the opening ceremony of the conference, acknowledged that a key focus of discussions at the conference centred  around increasing foreign direct invest into Nigeria. The Commissioner added that Nigeria’s FDI strategy was very much in line with the UK government’s trade and investment strategy of increasing investment opportunities into Nigeria and across the broader African continent to meet the ambition of making the UK the number one G7 investor on the African continent by 2022.

High Commissioner Lang said: “The City of London has unparalleled expertise in the services that enable companies to access capital, along with a range of specialist legal and professional services. The London Stock Exchange is home to 7 of the largest 10 listed oil & gas companies globally, and proud to say, home to quite a few Nigerians ones as well like Seplat and Vivo Energy.”

A spokesperson of the UK Department for International Trade, Nigeria noted that bilateral trade and investment between the UK and Nigeria had increased by nearly 40% from 2017, and was on course to double by 2030. “The UK already benefits from our strong connections – between families, governments and businesses – with African nations”, he said, “ and the Africa Investment Summit is intended to celebrate and build on these common links and forge new bonds.”

On 20th January 2020, the UK government would be hosting the Africa Investment Summit in London with the aim of bringing together businesses, governments and international institutionsto showcase and promote the breadth and quality of investment opportunities across Africa.

Delta, Air France and KLM mark tenth anniversary of their trans-Atlantic partnership

Delta Air Lines, Air France and KLM are celebrating 10 years of their successful trans-Atlantic cooperation, a partnership that has continued to lead the industry and set a trend for others to follow.

Over the past decade, together the airlines have soared to new heights as they opened up new routes between Europe and North America and improved customer service. Built around a network of seven hubs – five in the United States and two in Europe – the partnership covers routes between Canada, United States, Mexico and Europe.

“In 10 years, our North-Atlantic JV has become the most advanced example of what an airline partnership can be and what it can bring to the customers,” said Patrick Alexandre, Air France-KLM Group Executive Vice President Commercial, Sales & Alliances. “The success of our JV with Delta comes from our combined and multiple offer which is adapted to all customers, from B2C to trade and corporate. Together with our integrated commercial teams, we aim at delivering the best service to our clients all along their journey. We are very proud of our achievements and look forward to further expanding our JV.”

Some highlights include:

  • Customers have benefited as the partnership has 38 more peak day North America to Europe flights today than 10 years ago bringing the number to more than 270 daily trans-Atlantic flights. 
  • It’s now easier to connect to destinations across North America and Europe thanks to more hub-to-hub flying, such as Detroit-Paris and Atlanta-Amsterdam that offer a wealth of onward flights. The partnership has also opened up new U.S.-Europe city pairs that would not be possible for them to do alone, including service from non-hub cities, including Indianapolis, Raleigh/Durham and Dallas-Fort-Worth, to Paris and Tampa-Amsterdam.
  • Eligible customers can use the largest airport lounge network across North America and Europe.
  • There are opportunities to earn miles and redeem them on a number of benefits, including flight upgrades through each airlines’ frequent flyer programmes.
  • The partners carry 20% more customers today compared to 10 years ago.

“We have a lot to be proud of from the past 10 years. The key to our success has been continuing to innovate and a commitment to constantly improve our customer experience,” said Steve Sear, Delta’s President & Executive Vice President Global Sales. “Customers have benefitted from our award-winning service, and close integration of our systems and teams in the airport, sales, call centres and back office. Most recently, we have expanded our cooperation to include Africa, improving the travel options for new and existing customers.”

The Delta, Air France and KLM partnership has its foundations in a previous agreement between KLM and Northwest Airlines. Following the U.S. and European Union Open Skies agreement in 2007and the merger between Delta and Northwest, the Air France-KLM Group and Delta announced their long-term joint venture on May 20, 2009. Just over one year later, Alitalia joined the partnership, offering new flying opportunities between North America and Italy. Last year, Delta invested €375 million to acquire 10 percent equity in the Air France-KLM Group.

SOP Initiative NGO offers Amuwo Odofin residents free WiFi

Symphony of Praise Initiative (SOP) through her Christian humanitarian movement, ‘Connect Charity ‘ have, offered 24 hours Wi-Fi to Amuwo residents.

The Wi-Fi was presented to the Amuwo -Odofin Public Library recently in Lagos in commemoration of the ‘World Internet Day’.

According to President of the foundation, Seun Ayeni, the idea was initially conceived at their end of the year community carol programme of 2018.

“For us, it was about academics .We thought about the fact that children don’t read again, you know the popular saying: ‘Readers become leaders’.

  

“We thought that may be people don’t like to read books that much. So we concluded that people like to read via the internet and the only way to do it will be to make young people in Amuwo- Odofin have access to the internet for free.     “That was why we offered a free internet Wi-Fi. We thought that the best place to locate the Wi-Fi would be at the public library. Now, we have a library that is filled with books and also has internet access”

On how they were able to get the support of the residents, Ayeni noted that they have built trust with them over the years.

“We have built trust over the years, people know us now. We have embarked on a lot of community projects and have delivered. We called for funds, people donated money and we were able to raise a little around #100,000. What we had was #250,000 so we had to put in our own funds to make sure it’s a success”

Ayeni also gave clear details on how the project will be sustained.

“The Wi-Fi is opened to anybody that comes close to 50metres circumference around the library.

We thought about sustainability from the scratch, it was part of the project. That was why we made it powered by Solar. Solar as you know is sustainable on its own. So without light or with light, it works. Our internet is powered by solar. Swift has partnered with us by giving us internet free of charge. There is no recurrent payment on this , which is sustainable for us. No recurrent problem of electricity, it is powered by Solar.

I will advise Amuwo Odofin residents not just to use it as a play tool. This is just giving it to you for free so that you are not incapacitated. Explore the possibilities of what you can do with it”.

One of the members of the SOP Initiative’s Board of Trustees and a resident, Peter Adewumi who spoke to the press, said he was filled with joy because of the installation of the free Wi-Fi which will go a long way in empowering the youths in Amuwo Odofin.

The public presentation had in attendance representative of the Amuwo Odofin Local Government, Director, Lagos State Library Board – Mr. A. A. Oyadipe, amongst others.

 

 

 

Bristow Nigeria increases fleet size

Bristow Helicopters (Nigeria) Limited (“Bristow”), the leading provider of industrial aviation services in Nigeria has recently increased its Nigerian fleet size with the introduction of at least six additional aircraft in the past six months. These state-of-the-art aircraft which include the Sikorsky S76D & S92, the Leonardo AW139 & AW189 helicopters, and also the Embraer ERJ 145 Jet aircraft serve to provide much more optionality and resilience to its operations in Nigeria, and further strengthen the company’s continuing support and commitment to its varied client base and particularly, to the Nigerian Oil and Gas Industry as a whole.

Bristow is the first and currently the only operator of both the Sikorsky S76D and Leonardo AW189 helicopter in the offshore Oil & Gas Market in Africa and currently the only operator of the Sikorsky S92 aircraft type in Nigeria with well over 32,000 flight hours flown on this aircraft type in Nigeria since its introduction to the country in 2008.

The Sikorsky S76D helicopter represents the latest variant of tried and tested S76 Series. A proven aircraft type that has flown well over 7 million flight hours since its first variant came into operation in 1977. This medium sized aircraft type and its variants is the workhorse of the industry. With its two Pratt & Whitney engines, composite blades, low noise signature, smaller D-Value, modern avionics suite and 400nm range, the S76D (as with the S76C++ type) is ideally suited to support the daily shuttles to the Oil & Gas accommodation platforms and unmanned offshore installations in the Niger Delta.

The Sikorsky S92 on the other hand, is the largest helicopter type supporting the Oil & Gas industry in Nigeria today and arguably the only ‘heavy’ type aircraft currently supporting the Oil & Gas industry globally. With its robust gear box design, 540nm range and 19-Seat capacity, this aircraft is ideally suited to long range, crew change flights to offshore Rigs, FPSOs and also for Search & Rescue.  Besides providing an ideal opportunity for client sharing, the aircraft’s internal seat configuration and large cabin space and cabin windows essentially provide such room and comfort as to qualify it as an ‘airliner’.

The Leonardo AW189 is a new 8-tonne helicopter that sits ‘midway’ between the S76D and the S92 in terms of its seat capacity, size and range. It has also been designed to comply fully with the latest international regulatory safety requirements EASA/FAA Part 29 and JAR OPS 3/EU-OPS. A unique feature of particular importance to the AW189’s use for offshore and SAR operations is the fact that it’s main Gear Box has been designed to provide for a 50-minute run-dry capacity, well in excess of regulatory requirements. Bristow currently operates two of this aircraft types in Nigeria and has recently received the Nigerian Civil Aviation Authorities (NCAA) approval to include the type on its Operations Specifications after a very thorough certification and approval process.

According to Captain ‘Dapo Oyeleke, Managing Director of Bristow, these additions to the Bristow Nigeria fleet signify the importance, growth potential and confidence the company has in the Nigerian market.

“Nigeria continues to be a very important market for Bristow. Besides an unwavering commitment to safety and exceptional service delivery, our business strategy revolves around our understanding of individual client’s future requirements and ability to accurately forecast the needs of the Oil & Gas market; and then proactively delivering safe, best in class, and cost effective solutions tailored to fully meet those requirements. The twin-engined, air-conditioned Helicopters with 12, 16 and 19 passenger seat configurations in the medium, light heavy and heavy type categories offer our clients choice, flexibility and the ability to ‘breathe in, and breathe out’, in such a way that drives down their operating costs per seat, per mile, mitigates exposure to one ‘Original Aircraft Manufacturer’ OEM type and optimizes payload”.

Captain Oyeleke also commented that “we will continue to invest heavily in new innovative technology, our processes and above all our people. These additional aircraft will provide an excellent opportunity for us to continue to attract and retain the industry’s best; provide employment, train and ‘throughput’ our Nigerian National pilots, engineers and support personnel, in line with the market opportunities”.

Nigeria’s Yogurt Company, Sweetkiwi Launches In The United States

2018 was a monumental year in the frozen yogurt industry as revolutionary Nigeria’s yogurt brand, Sweetkiwi, launched at Union Kitchen, a healthy-driven retail outlet in the United States of America. The frozen yogurt industry in Nigeria has not been one to boast of contributing to the health of the consumers due to the high content of added sugar. The industry has also not seen any brand pioneer a distinct business move until Sweetkiwi’s launch 7 years ago which drove a new perception and re-wrote the narrative.


The yogurt company was founded by Ehime Eigbe-Akindele in 2011. Born out of her love for desserts, and a personal inclination to be healthy. Ehime noticed a gap in the industry – one void of frozen yogurts that were as natural and healthy as they were sweet. She worked on a clean label recipe making frozen yogurt from fresh milk and culturing it into real yogurt. To aid her, Ehime Eigbe-Akindele went on to take a course in Dessert Production, and a certification course in Entrepreneur Management from the Enterprise Development Centre of Pan Atlantic University, Lagos.

Prior to launching Sweetkiwi, Ehime graduated with a BA Honors from London Metropolitan University in Business Information Technology & International Relations. She began her career in Amnesty International before moving to Citigroup in Dallas, Texas where she handled corporate loan restructuring, default banking, and bankruptcy. Ehime Eigbe-Akindele is, also, a Goldman Sachs 10,000 Women Scholar, and has been named one of Nigeria’s most inspiring women in 2016.

In a span of 7 years, Sweetkiwi has dominated the Nigerian frozen yogurt scene and was named one of the 100 most innovative businesses in Nigeria. The negotiation to scale beyond Nigeria started in June 2018 with Union Kitchen, a food and beverage business accelerator, with franchises all over the world. Sweetkiwi currently stocks at eight stores in the Washington D.C area. She said “the plan is to go regional than national in the US along with creating experience locations in major cities. We are working to scale Sweetkiwi to a global level.

We have received so much support from the DC food scene and government. ‘I wish the governments in Nigeria can support entrepreneurs in the same way, instead of the current way they treat small businesses. Imagine what we could achieve, we had a better environment to facilitate growth.’ Ehime said on her biggest struggles as an entrepreneur.

 

About Sweetkiwi Frozen Yogurt

Sweetkiwi makes the best tasting, clean labor frozen yogurt using real fat-free yogurt made from milk sourced from grass-fed cows and real ingredients. Founded in 2011, with a plan to help grow milk production and create more dairy and non-dairy products for grocery and retail.

To gain more information on the brand:
www.sweetkiwiyogurt.com