Titilope Olubisi Ejimagwa is a business woman, one of Africa’s most successful marketers, and the first African five-star director at Longrich Bioscience, a multinational marketing company.

Ejimagwa is the woman behind the establishment of a $104 million OEM smart factory in Lagos, Nigeria. Her success in helping Longrich set up its operations in Africa gave her the leverage to insist on the establishment of a permanent smart factory in Nigeria that will export Longrich’s products to Europe and the rest of Africa.

In this interview with Ventures Africa, she discusses what it means to be a five-star director at a multinational company, the key to successful marketing, and more.

Ventures Africa (VA): What does being a five-star director mean at Longrich Bioscience? And what does being the first black five-star director mean to you?

Titilope Olubisi Ejimagwa (TO): Its not a title, it only means harder work. It means more brand consciousness. It’s a thing of pride for Africa and not personal pride. It is very humbling.

VA: You went from studying physical and health education to doing business, marketing and real estate? How did that happen? Choice or chance?

TO: Longrich business is about Wellness. Health Education is about Wellness. When you pursue wellness and stay relevant in its advocacy, Wealth will follow. Then you put the money into Real Estate in order to preserve its value.

VA: Thanks to you, a $104 million OEM factory is now built in Lekki, and it took 6 years from when Longrich first ventured into Nigeria for that to happen. How were you able to convince the people at the top to finally make this huge decision?

TO: Persistence and belief. Doing things for the greater good. Inspiring Long term and strategic planning from a point of knowledge. Seeing not just the big picture but also the WHOLE picture. Every one of these methods helped me convince the Chairman of Longrich.

VA: Did you have any doubt or fear with regards to establishing the factory? If yes, what was it?
TO: Not a doubt.
VA: In what specific way(s) has the establishment of the factory changed things, in terms of Longrichs operation in Nigeria and its contribution to the countrys manufacturing industry?

TO: The factory is not just for Longrich products; it’s also for OEM or outsourced manufacturing for third parties. Everybody wins because demand will always grow and it will be matched by supply.

VA: From your experience, what is the key to successful marketing? 
TO: Know your Products and Services Well. Then, Know your Customers better.
VA: How can African/Nigerian cities develop purposive infrastructure like what is being done in Eko Atlantic? Not necessarily in terms of scale, but in terms of quality planning and detailed design.

TO: Innovative Co-ownership funding Or Cooperative infrastructure development. Professionals and multinationals are a must in the mix. Government must lower taxes and duties for such private sector developments.

VA: What do you think is the biggest issue with urban planning and development in Nigeria and how can it be better?

TO: Public Planners are not communicating their revisions, to re-orientate local construction companies of the need to improve.There is high tolerance for Mediocrity, in terms of quality of developments. Even when you try to build better, people think it’s extravagantThere is equally Paucity of long-term funds

VA: What are the opportunities for Nigeria in transitioning from oil and gas to green energy alternatives?

TO: Gas is greener than crude; we need more gas to electric grids. Electric cars are here; we need to embrace the change. Security needs to be fixed so solar farms can take off in the Sahara.

VA: How can oil and gas companies like Loofca International and oil-dependent countries like Nigeria survive the global transition to green energy?

TO: Strategic 5-year plan to find partnerships for leveraging strengths and reducing fossil fuel portfolio of services in order to remain get competitive. Green is here.

VA: How can we improve the quality and production quantity of Nigerian-grown rice? And what should be done to encourage rice farmers? 

TO: Co-location and ecosystems need to be encouraged in Nigeria. Such communities will create friendly competition and drive innovation and differentiation in rice production.

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