Climate-Smart Agriculture: Helping the World Produce More Food

 To feed nine billion people by 2050, global food production needs to increase by 70 percent. Farmers in Africa, and across the world, are using Climate-Smart Agriculture practices to combat the impacts of Climate Change on crop production.

RIGHT ENTREPRENEURIAL HABITS


If your dream is to create this unique kind of business/lifestyle, you would need to start forming the habits that will help you. Hard work isn’t enough. Massive action isn’t enough. Focused effort along with good habits is what will help you achieve your goals. Here are three habits crucial to success in building a lifestyle business, any business for that matter. 

HAVING THE RIGHT PRIORITIES: In building a lifestyle business, your priorities start with a strong mindset. You have to “see it” and believe it. Fill your mind with inspiration daily. Podcasts, videos and books can be your best friend. Consume what will either help your next steps or what will inspire you to take action. Building an audience is your sole priority, if the type of business you do doesn’t target any audience, there is virtually no means of you making money.

BE CONSCIOUS OF YOUR NICHE: you can’t run a business you aren’t comfortable with, build the type of business that supports your thinking and your lifestyle. Developing ideas of a business you cannot defend or that you do not believe in is a wrong move if you are aiming for a peaceful lifestyle.

KNOWING MEDIOCRITY IS A DREAM KILLER: it’s crucial to be grateful and contented, so also, it is important not to accept mediocrity or complacency. The bigger the dreams, the greater the success. Don’t settle for less when there is still more that you can do.

If your dreams are going to become a reality, you have to push yourself hard enough. Don’t get comfortable with lifestyles that won’t drive you to your goals. Your lifestyle is a determinant of the quality of your success.

 

Young Rich with Wilfred Wachira

Meet Wilfred Wachira, the owner of Urban Grind Grill.

WHY WOMEN ARE IMPORTANT TO TECH INNOVATIONS IN NIGERIA


Tuesday, July 26, 2016

One of the core conversations at the 2016 edition of TECHPLUS, was the role of women in technology.

Experts at the agenda-setting event acknowledged that it was time for women to be given the space to work and find their feet and also for women themselves to show more level of involvement.

"It is important we pay attention to women," said Emilia Asim, who sits on TECHPLUS Advisory Committee. "Women and young people make up a larger quota of the population all over the world. That is where women in technology come in."

"Women have to be given an opportunity to be better included. Technology is now used as a tool for gender inclusion all over the world."

According to TECHPLUS, women in technology is focused on driving the greater inclusion of women in the technological space, opening up the vista for gender-balance, feminine friendliness, and advanced technological gains through the inclusion of women.

Successfully addressing the gender gaps in these areas can unlock significant commercial and socio-economic opportunities, benefiting businesses, women, and societies.

But Asim explained the gender disparity in the technology ecosystem may be due to many women not paying "close attention to technology."

According to her, women "fall short when it comes to tech innovation, career involvement and having a stronger voice in the tech ecosystem," in spite of being arguably biggest consumers of technology. Giving examples of Oreoluwa Somolu Lesi is the Founder and Executive Director of the Women's Technology Empowerment Centre (WTEC) and Uneku Atawodi, the General Manager of the Meltwater Entrepreneurial School of Technology (MEST), Asim said women were already breaking the glass ceiling in the Nigerian tech industry.

She advised the federal government to invest in Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics (STEM). She said Nigeria would only be able to compete in the world tech space if only the government could prioritise investment in those areas.

"The government at the federal level needs to earmark a strategy that will drive STEM education for girls all over the country," she said.

Giving her opening remark at Africa's biggest technology conference, Chairperson of Alliance for Affordable Internet, Dr. Omobola Johnson, stated that developments in technology are fundamentally altering the way people live, connect, communicate and transact. These developments, in her view, have had profound effects on economic development in Nigeria and Africa at large. According to her, to promote tech advancement, developing countries should invest in quality education for youth, continuous skills training for workers and managers for all stakeholders to understand the importance of the continuous revolution.

TECHPLUS is a gathering of everything technology, providing a robust tripartite tech experience through its conferences, exhibitions and gaming structures whilst serving as a platform for knowledge sharing and networking for the consumers and businesses.

 SOURCE: THE GUARDIAN

Food for the Future: Agriculture in a Sustainable World

 "Social Dimensions of Green Economy and Sustainable Development"

Life Story of Billionaire Warren Buffet - Documentary

Watch the documentary of one of the richest people in the world, Warren Buffet

MODULAR REFINERIES: CONSEQUENTIAL TO JOB CREATION.


Thursday, July 28, 2016

"We cannot continue to close our eyes to the looming crisis of unemployment on the African continent", said Tony Elumelu, recently. "With nearly 200 million people aged 15-24, Africa has the youngest and most rapidly growing population in the world. By 2045, our youth population will double to exceed that of China and India. By 2020, Africa will need 122 million jobs if we are to succeed in the fight against poverty and maintain political stability and global security".

The unemployment problem in Nigeria will persist without creative thinking. Thinking out of the box (or thinking beyond the box) is a metaphor for thinking differently, unconventionally, or from a new perspective. This phrase often refers to novel or creative thinking At times, it may result in frank and insightful re-appraisal of a situation, oneself, and managing the progress of standard operating procedures of an organisation. Imagine Nigeria as a farmer with bountiful crop yields, but unable to cook the farm products, and seeks and buys cooked food from restaurants at enormous cost. It is foolish for economic, security, and strategic reasons.

To be successful, our leaders must be purpose- driven. Like the heavens, we need order. Money is not everything. We need thoughtful, progressive ideas like ideas that enabled automobiles, aeroplanes, to be manufactured, etc., yet we cannot decide on modular refineries.

The issues of unemployment, fuel scarcity, PIB, and illegal refineries have been lingering because of paralysis from analysis. Like the parable of the donkey that starved to death, the donkey was placed at an equal distance between a carrot on his left, and a carrot on his right. Since he was equally distant from both, he couldn't make up his mind which one to choose. As a result of his inability to decide, he was stuck in the middle, and eventually starved to death.

People suffer from 'paralysis from analysis', constantly over-analyzing and unable to take a firm decision, and stick with it. As a result, they miss a lot of opportunities, and figuratively starve themselves to death as the opportunities disappear. Nigeria has crude oil asset, which is consequential to any job creation activities. To economically convert raw crude oil into more useful fuels and petrochemicals, multitude of tanks and vessels, numerous pipes of varying sizes, fired heaters, pumps and compressors, heat exchangers, reactors, and distillation columns, instrumentation and control systems, and more, are used, and need to be designed, manufactured, and produced to create employment

In reality, a refinery is an organised and coordinated arrangement of manufacturing processes designed to produce physical and chemical changes in crude oil and natural gas.

One way to solve Nigeria's fuel scarcity problem is to install modular refineries at strategic locations (Bayelsa, Rivers, Akwa Ibom, Cross River, Edo, Delta, Ondo, Lagos, and the distribution network: Integrated product pipeline system - 4300 km, crude oil pipeline network - 700 km, pumping/booster stations - 20).

Modular refineries are flexible and cost- effective supply option for crude producers in remote regions. This is particularly true where there is a need to adapt rapidly to meet local demand. Relatively low capital cost, speed and ease of construction are key advantages of a modular mini-refinery. Location in close proximity and access to crude supply near to sizeable markets will provide logistic advantage.

To assist in developing the country, we should contribute through the vital role of technology in the systematic transformation of the production systems and capacities. Why? Because development will always depend on the internal innovative capacities of a society, for it is man rather than machine that creates development. Technology transfer is a myth for nonproductive nations, and a reality for the nations with new means of production, capital formation, and technical knowledge. Sustained economic growth is then further ignited, accentuated, and escalated by increasing technical wisdom.

The first units in a refinery involve no chemical reactions or catalysts. Rather, based on each component's boiling point, they separate and distribute to a range of components for further downstream processing and conversion. Downstream units include such equipment as pumps and compressors, heat exchangers, reactors, and distillation columns.

Various consumer goods from refining processes can create jobs in producing Liquefied petroleum gas, gasoline for vehicles, jet fuel, paraffin for lighting and heating, diesel fuels, lubricating oils, waxes, and polishes, fuels for ships, factories and central heating, asphalt for roads and roofing.

Products from a modular liquefied natural gas (LNG) plant can also be used to create jobs in aerospace and defence, pharmaceutical and biotechnology, chemicals, construction and infrastructure, electronics, food and beverage, glass, medical, laboratories, metallurgy, metal fabrication, rubber and plastics, power and energy, pulp and paper, petrochemicals and refining, mobility and transportation industries.
SOURCE: THE GUARDIAN.

Young Rich : Tony Kibagendi

The inspiring story of a young entrepreneur that has made himself a living from creating many companies.

MANY WAYS TO COME INTO EVENT PLANNING.


Event planning and hosting of parties is one of those activities that are no longer taken for granted in the world especially in countries like Nigeria where the new trends in entertainment and beautifying has found a way to the top of income sources. With the arrival of many entertainment and celebrity bloggers, new fashion and make up trends, there has been a consistent call for improvement in event planning and many other derivative businesses. There are so many businesses which are related to event planning and entertainment which people have found a way to improve and increase its viability in the societal market. There are many ways in which an entrepreneur or aspiring entrepreneur can come into entertainment, event planning and a host of other professions to make good money in a reasonable time pace.
Event planning solely can be considered for business, many people earn alot of money and even get to set up their own business from zero level just from the talents of organisation and sophistication. Earning a living from helping people pr group of people in hosting occasions and catering for their guest is no longer a strange business in Nigeria. You can also consider becoming an event planner for a living.

 

Ushering business is also another lucrative way to make money from events and occasion. Many ushering companies started as a one man business that looked for means of recruiting people for the sole purpose of receiving guest at occasions. There is always a need for ushers from time to time either for small gatherings or even larger gatherings for political and societal purposes.

Venue decoration is another trendy business in Nigeria today. Churches, event centres and multipurpose hall all get decorated for different occasions depending on the taste and class of the host. This is another opportunity that can be considered for business and which can fetch good income or even serve as an alternative means of making money for interested people.

Make over is a very lucrative and sustainable way to make money in the world of today. Contrary to beliefs that make up only involves the application of products on the face and tying of head gear for events, make up goes beyond the regular crave for good looks. Movie productions, stage performances, music productions and different occasions all make good use of makeup artist in the production of their works. Make up can be done on a good scale to make a good living.

Photography and cinematography is also a business that is trendy and which people now pay attention to. The arrival of social media platforms like instagram, facebook and twitter has given the need to for people to showcase quality photographed picture. People now spend more on getting a good photo and video documentation of their events. This is another opportunity that could be considered in event making business.

There are many opportunities waiting to be taken, no sector is saturated enough, all that is needed is creativity and innovation. The urge to do something regular differently is all that you need.

HOW TO IMPROVE YOUR SALES ABILITY.


Many companies and business outlets train their staff to be better salespeople by perfecting their approach, repeating the same opening lines with every client and essentially turning themselves into sales robots.

For some industries, this approach is actually effective. However,  in the true sense of it, effective sales demands much more creativity, and a more fine-tuned approach. Speaking like a robot and repeating a spiel ad infinitum turns people away, but there’s another way to become a more effective salesperson. It is better to focus on the purpose for the sales, rather than other metrics.

FOCUS ON PURPOSE: this literally means adjusting your sales strategy to focus on delivering suggestions based on what a customer needs, rather than presenting a list of products that your customer may or may not care about. Sales is about trying to achieve a good fit. When a good fit is achieved, a transaction takes place. Traditional sales metrics are about trying to find clients that fit your products and services. Selling with purpose is more about finding good clients than fitting your products and services to their needs.

PROBLEMS AND SOLUTIONS: It’s important to acknowledge that most successful businesses aren’t created as ideas for products, they’re created as ideas for solutions. Rather than dreaming up some novel configuration of services, successful entrepreneurs look at a given problem in a target market and develop a solution for it. This makes it easier for you to make sales as there is a readymade market for the products you are trying to sell.

GETTING TO KNOW YOUR CLIENTS: this approach familiarise you with your clients on a more intimate level. Rather than just talking to them, you’ll actually listen to them and try to understand their goals, their needs, their pain points and problems with similar providers they’ve had in the past.

With this knowledge, you’ll be able to put together a customized solution that works for them, specifically increasing the likelihood that they’ll follow your recommendations.

Selling with the best intention of helping a client is the easiest way to thrive as a sales rep and also to close more deals. Being more concerned about how you can be of help and how a client can benefit from you is more rewarding than just going after the idea of making money alone.

AIRLINES SEEK 45% INCREASE IN FARES

Friday, 29th July 2016.

Government pledges to end aviation fuel scarcity.

The current spike in the exchange rate of the dollar to the naira may be taking its toll on the country's foreign-exchange-dependent aviation sector as airline operators seek to increase their fares by 45 per cent.
The dollar exchange rate, which currently stands at N350, according to the airline operators, has further pushed the cost of running the business beyond them.

Some operators told The Guardian that their plight was not helped by the Nigerian Civil Aviation Authority (NCAA) disapproval of a new air fare regime that should have officially gone up by 45 per cent, to keep pace with the dollar rate.
Some airlines, however, appear to have resorted to self-help in raising ticket prices for over-the-counter purchase.

The act, which is described as a sharp practice by NCAA's rules, has seen some tickets gone up by N10, 000 to N20, 000, depending on the airline and the time of purchase.
An operator, who is also a leading member of the Airline Operators of Nigeria (AON), told The Guardian on the condition of anonymity that the current fare regime, in relation to foreign exchange, was not realistic.

He said: "The current rate is killing our business and it seems our regulators don't care if we go into extinction. The truth is that this sector cannot survive under the current realities. You cannot do anything without the dollar, which is not in anyway favourable."
The operator added that several planes were either due for checks or had been sent for the same purpose overseas but still could not be returned due to the further high cost of service caused by the forex spike.

It would be recalled that the aviation fuel scarcity that almost grounded operations nationwide last week was due to oil marketers' staunch refusal to import the product, otherwise called Jet-A1, into the country at an exchange rate higher than N300.
The situation had to be salvaged by the Federal Government's intervention that availed forex to the importers at an interbank rate.

On the heels of the scarcity and attendant hardship on air travellers, The Guardian observed that rates, which normally range between N18, 000 and N23, 000 for economy class across the airlines, went up to about N30, 000 to N39, 800. The price is subject to the time of purchase and airline of choice.

Some operators have, however, openly supported the hike. A former manager of the defunct Chanchangi Airlines, Mohammed Tukur, at the weekend said that the airline operators had been boxed to a corner by the current harsh economic condition, and left with no choice than to raise fares.
Tukur, who was also the Assistant Secretary-General of the AON, added that the carriers were in dire straits, but would survive if fares were raised.

"You look at the dollar; you now buy everything in dollar. Airline business is heavily dollarised. Maintenance cost has gone up, the airlines pay so many charges to the aviation agencies, among other sundry charges. It should not be less than N35, 000 if they really want to break even. Their fear is that if they raise airfare, people would take to road travel. It is still very cheap to fly in Nigeria."
The NCAA had, however, denied raising ticket fares for local airlines. The aviation regulatory body said though airfares, add-ons, charges, tariffs and terms and condition of service are fully liberalised, they are all subject to NCAA's approval before coming to effect.

The spokesman for the NCAA, Sam Adurogboye, said airfares and sundry charges had been statutorily deregulated and subjected to market forces.
He said that notwithstanding, all air carriers or their agents were expected to file with the authority, a tariff for that service showing all rates, fares and add-on charges, including the terms and conditions of free and reduced rate transportation for that service, as specified in IS.18.14.1.1.

Another requirement for airfare raise is for the carriers to obtain approval from the NCAA to introduce and or increase add-on charges or surcharges such as fuel, Internet booking, insurance, security and similar surcharges, prior to implementation.
Meanwhile, the Minister of State for Petroleum, Dr. Ibe Kachikwu has assured that the Federal Government is doing everything possible to tackle the scarcity of aviation fuel.

Kachickwu who spoke yesterday to aviation correspondents at the Nnamdi Azikwe International Airport, Abuja said the sector had been privatised and the production of Jet A1 was entirely in the hands of the private sector. He said the government had been trying to work with the private sector to douse the rousing tension.
Kachikwu disclosed that in the short term, he had been trying to liaise with countries where there is immediate availability of the product, and in the long term, the government would resume the Jet A1 production in the refineries.

"Every one of us, including the newly sworn in General Managing Director of the Nigeria National Petroleum Cooperation (NNPC) are doing our best to find a short-term solution to this problem before looking at the systemic problem and how it has affected the private sector to provide the aviation fuel."
SOURCE: THE GUARDIAN

Young CEO - Bilikiss Adebiyi

Wecyclers founder and CEO, Bilikis Adebiyi Abiola shows us how "one man's waste is another man's treasure" in this edition of Young CEO.
Watch to find out how she used a simple business model to convert over 2,000 tones of waste into over N1 million naira worth of prizes and incentives, and to create numerous jobs within the community.

Young Rich - The Farming Edition

One of the fastest growing industries especially among the youth in Kenya is the agricultural industry. This week Young Rich brings you some of those stories and features a company that could soon see the farmers linked with the buyers with the click of a button.

GROWING YOUR BUSINESS BEYOND THE START UP PHASE.


The flexibility and empowerment that comes with working as a start up can be incredibly appealing. Setting your own work hours, working from home and seeing your ideas come to life can be motivating. But as a start up scales, herein lies the challenge: How do you scale up and turn profitable while keeping your start up vibe.
As start ups grow, what began as a tight-knit group of people often evolves into different departments that combine into their own groups. In cases like this, communication can suffer from expansion. Here are tips on growing your business beyond the start up phase.

FLEXIBILITY IN WORK HOURS: flexibility and the work life balance it affords is a benefit. If you want to hire the best talent, flexible hours are an important to consider, try getting rid of the idea of the “9 to 5” employees. An employee's option to work from home and the ability to set their own hours can attract top-notch prospects. As long as the work is getting done on time, it doesn’t matter when or where that happens.

VALUE EMPLOYEES IDEAS: One of the best parts of working at a start up is that your ideas are heard. As a company gets bigger, this becomes more unlikely. Don’t give up this openness. Employees feel empowered when they can bring their creative ideas to the table and have their voices heard. Good ideas can come from anyone at a company.

ENCOURAGE GOOD RELATIONSHIPS: At a start-up, everyone knows everyone. But as the company thrives, teams often break off into smaller groups and communication can start to suffer. Facilitate channels for interaction so that people get to know each other personally. Host events on a regular basis and create activities that encourage mingling between groups.

MAKE THE WORK ENVIRONMENT FUN TO BE: start ups often have very appealing work environments that employees want to engage with. These leisure spaces encourage much-needed breaks, which helps stimulate curiosity and boost productivity. As companies grow larger, keep these kinds of spaces abundant around the office.

BENEFIT FROM THE GROWTH: Start ups are in business to succeed. No one is going to complain about the job security that growth can bring. Being profitable is a good sign that your business is working and it can help your company retain talent. Use growth to overcome the misconception that employees will be working 16 hours a day for a company that won’t be around tomorrow. This stability will attract top experienced talent.

Use the passion, openness and flexibility to lure success to your business even beyond the start up stage.

ENTREPRENEURS IN AFRICA: BE INSPIRED.


Africa is one of the continents in the world with the fastest growing economy, it is therefore no surprise that Africa continues to produces young, vibrant entrepreneurs who are taking the face of business and economy to another level.
Many of them are specialising in different fields and are giving opportunities to the masses by providing jobs and inspiring many more people to become entrepreneurs themselves.  They are impacting into the society on a daily basis and their stories are inspiring to witness.

SANGU DELLE (GHANA) CEO GOLDEN PALMS INVESTMENT.
Sangu is a 28 year old vibrant and very influential Ghanaian entrepreneur. He is the brain behind Golden Palm Investments, Ghana. A holding company that invest in early stage venture and growth capital financing across Africa, particularly in Real etstate, healthcare, agribusiness and technology. The GPI has backed start-ups such as SOLO mobile in Nigeria, mPharma in Ghana and Stawi Foods of Kenya. In health care, he and his team have built a successful chain of hospitals in Ghana, which they hope to expand into the region. He is a fast rising entrepreneur with great and enviable business initiatives and passion towards bringing about significant changes in the life of Africans.

ALLY EDHA AWADH (TANZANIA) CEO, LAKE OIL GROUPS
Lake Group of companies commenced operations in March 2006 in Dar Es Salaam, Tanzania, just as an oil marketing company. The group owns Lake Oil Limited, Lake Gas Ltd and Lake Trans ltd, Gulf premix ltd. Lake group has also entered into cylinder manufacturing. It is now one of the largest distributors of petroleum products in Tanzania and exports to neighbouring countries also.

ISAAC OBOTH (UGANDA) CEO, MEDIA 256
Media 256 started in 2010 by the 26 year old CEO. It is a successful film production company, having risked it all by quitting university to start his own company. Orphaned at a young age, Isaac learned early on the importance of making a living by creating opportunities. Now, media 256 has a client list that includes Coca Cola, UNDP, USAID, the Ethiopian Commodity Exchange, Marie Stopes International and the African leadership network and the African leadership academy.

ADII PIENAAR (SOUTH AFRICA) CO FOUNDER, WOOTHEMES.
He is one of the 3 co founders of Woothemes, a company that designs and develops customized commercial themes and plugings for WordPress. Adii built the business with a bootstrap budget, and the company today generates over $3 million revenues from the sales of its theme. Pienaar has since exited the company and now runs a PubicBeta, a service that allows successful entrepreneurs to transfer knowledge to new start ups.

UCHE PEDRO (NIGERIA) CEO BELLANAIJA
She is a 32 year old Nigerian Entrepreneur, who is the founder of Bellanaija, an entertainment, fashion and lifestyle website. She is one of the most popular bloggers in Nigeria. Her site was created in 2006, she has grown to be one of the hottest destinations for celebrity news and fashion trends on the internet, attracting more than 10 million page views per month.

How to become Rich!!! on Oprah

Oprah interviewed Robert Kiyosaki on his book 'Rich dad, Poor dad'.

SOFTWARE PRACTITIONERS SEEK ENFORCEMENT OF 'MADE-IN-NIGERIA' CAMPAIGN

Wednesday, July 27, 2016

As the race to becoming a knowledge economy gets intensified among nations, especially in Africa, with countries including Rwanda, Angola already leading the pace, software practitioners in the country have insisted that the 'Made- in-Nigeria' campaign would make huge difference for the country if well articulated and enforced by the government.

This is even has it has been adequately revealed that Nigerian branded computers represented less than eight per cent of all computers bought in the country.
Speaking in Lagos, at the second edition of TechPlus, a Director from the National Information and Technology Development Agency (NITDA) Dr. Femi Adeluyi, said from the agency's oversight function, it discovered that local PC manufacturers can only boast of controlling just eight per cent of the market, with dominance coming from the foreign brands.

He revealed that there has been serious Import-Export Imbalance in the country. Quoting, a United Nations Conference on Trade and Development (UNCTAD) report, Adeluyi said in 2012, Nigeria imported $2 billion of Information and Communications Technology (ICT) goods but only exported $5 million, which leaves the country with an Export-Import Ratio of 1: 4001.
Meanwhile, Software Practitioners, under the aegis of the Institute of Software Practitioners of Nigeria (ISPON), during their visit to the Minister of Communications, Adebayo Shittu, in Abuja, at the weekend, urged the Federal Government to enforce earlier directive on the patronage of Made- in-Nigeria IT solutions by the regime of former President Olusegun Obasanjo.

The Federal Executive Council in 2006 through the then Secretary to the Federal Government, Chief Ufot Ekaette, in a memo had directed Ministries, Departments and Agencies (MDAs) to patronise 'Made-in-Nigeria' software products and services.
However and probably because there were no sanctions to back the order, consumption of foreign IT products and service has plummeted in the country.
Worried about with this development, ISPON visited the Ministry of Communication to trade ideas on software development and Nigeria's drive towards enthroning a knowledge economy.

According to ISPON, the country's quest for digital economy may not materialize, unless software development in Nigeria is given a major priority.
In his presentation to the minister, the ISPON President, Olorogun James Emadoye, prayed the government to have a rethink on software Nigeria.
Noting that 'Made- in- Nigeria' IT solutions and services could be retooled for global competitions, he said that the Wing Federal Secretariat Ikoyi would have been a mini version of silicon valley for Nigeria where resources would have been collocated for better results.

Lamenting that Nigeria's e-readiness is worrisome due to policy inconsistency; Emadoye said that there was need to create new inclusive relationships in public sector at all levels of governance as well as cross-sectoral stakeholder communities.
While urging the minister to facilitate earlier directive on patronage of software Nigeria, he added that there was need to accelerate and deepen its engagements to energise the ecosystem and connect with as many of the players and institutions emerging in the country.

According to him, for Nigeria's prosperity beyond oil, ICT holds significant opportunities and "which ever way we look at it, software is strategic to that huge potential.
Emadoye pointed out that the war against corruptions is a digital one, which is a small task for ISPON; an area where software practitioners can intervene in government without much noise, with little capital expenditure and more effective results.

"Software developers and Software entrepreneurs are global citizens able to work across boarders without travelling restrictions", he explained.
According to Emadoye, ISPON wants the National Information and Technology Development Agency (NITDA) to take up this challenge.

As such in realization of Ministry of Communication as the main government department charged with the development of IT sector of which software is core, the ISPON President said there was need to introduce computer programming and software in primary and secondary schools; initiate immediate revision of software /computer engineering courses for tertiary institutions; creation of Software and Future Technology Institute (SFTI) in Nigeria.
Responding, Shittu, who admitted that he was not aware of the earlier government's directive on software Nigeria, urged software practitioners to come up with new proposals on how best to move the industry forward.

He pledged that a section of the Abuja Technology Village could be converted to an IT Park for innovation and exhibition of software solutions.

"We welcome good suggestions that can move the industry forward. Come up with good ideas", he stated.

SOURCE: THE GUARDIAN

Forbes Africa TV: Nigerian Oil Mogul Femi Otedola, the billionaire that bounced back

My Worst Day Episode 3 features Nigerian Oil Mogul Femi Otedola, the billionaire that bounced back. Femi Otedola takes us on a journey of one of his darkest days in business when he lost everything he had worked so hard to build leaving him with only two choices; to commit suicide or weather the storm.


COMMON TRAITS OF SUCCESSFUL ENTREPRENEURS.


Attaining success is not an easy task, so as staying successful. There are many entrepreneurs today who have adopted certain traits and attributes which are worth emulating and considering if you aim at being successful also. Many household names and well known people like Aliko Dangote, Folorunso Alakija, Femi Otedola are people who have given it all it takes and strive so hard not only to attain success, but to also maintain it.
Here are few traits common with successful entrepreneurs.

THEY THINK BIG: entrepreneurs think big and outside the box. Despite the fact that many of these known names started small, they think beyond the present and have the capacity of a mind that can achieve beyond their goals. They think big and wide. Despite Aliko Dangote being in the food processing line, it didn’t stop him from going into cement distribution and he is also considering the structuring of a refinery. Small minds can’t dream this big or huge. Only people who are aimed at success think way outside of the box.

THEY ARE OPPORTUNIST: people who cannot identify opportunities and seize them are not likely to go beyond mediocrity. Successful people are opportunist. They take advantage of ideas and means many people do not consider and make something huge out of it eventually. If Folorunso Alakija, who is a fashion designer and banker could apply for the allocation of an Oil Prospecting License and she is the most successful and richest Nigerian woman today, it is obvious that identifying opportunities are crucial to success.

THEY HAVE PURPOSE AND VISION: every successful hand has a vision and purpose that drive them, they have solutions to problems and they have wants they want to satisfy. Dangote group for example have the vision of providing basic needs for all Nigerians and today, they have at least a product any Nigerian can purchase and derive value from. There must be a valuable purpose for a vision to be successful.

THEY ARE FOCUSED ON THEIR NICHE: every man has his path. If you are going to be successful, you have to create your area of comfort and expertise and stick to it. Femi Otedola stuck with oil and gas, Dangote concentrated on commodity provision while Mike Adenuga focused on oil and gas, then telecoms.

THEY ARE FLEXIBLE: Successful people know how to stay flexible, they know when to invest into a business and when not to. They can read the economy and the society and they know how to make the right decisions when it comes to investments and making money.

P Diddy - You Are Powerful

Sean Combs, the American hip hop recording artist, record producer, entrepreneur and actor, gives a motivational speech on self realisation and becoming a success.

3 IMPORTANT TOOLS TO IMPROVE PRODUCTIVITY.


Many a time, people equate productivity to hardwork or better still, smart work. In the true sense of entrepreneurship, the ability to be a go getter is the most important factor when trying to improve productivity. Maximum productivity involves courage most importantly, then wisdom and hardwork.
Courage is the tool that separate people with the same tools and opportunities from one another.

COURAGE: when you study the richest and the most enterprising people in the world, it is not hard to understand that courage is what differentiates the successful from the poor. Courage is the ability to accept to go in the direction of your dreams irrespective of how uncomfortable the situation is.  Most people lack the courage needed to take risk that is going to spring them into their breakthroughs. It takes courage to take a step, it takes courage to face challenges.
SMART WORK: it is secondly important to know, that it is not how hard you work or how long it involves. It is how smart you can carry out any work process in as little time as possible that defines the improvement in your level of productivity. Smart work, effective strategies and innovative thinking are the ways to go when looking to improve your productivity.

MORE EFFORT: As important as courage and smart work is, another critical factor to improve productivity is the effort we are willing to put into our everyday work. Either as an entrepreneur or as a business manager, a little more effort and a few more effective hours into our daily work can go a long way in improving productivity and efficiency.

Developing the clear choices of work approach and concentrating at the fullest on  work is the best direction to take while looking for ways to improve efficiency and increase productivity.

Platinum Standard - Shirley Frimpong

On this  episode of platinum standard, we have Shirley Frimpong-Manso, a Ghanaian film producer and director. Tune in as she tells us how her story in the film industry began and where the journey has taken her so far. Enjoy!!

ECONOMY: WE’RE LEARNING THROUGH THE HARD WAY, SAYS BUHARI.


Monday, July 25, 2016

ABUJA- President Muhammadu Buhari, Monday, in Abuja said that Nigeria was now learning through the way in the diversification of its economy.

Speaking when he received a Special Envoy from the President of Islamic Republic of Iran at the State House, Mohammad Javad Zarif, the president commended the Iranian government for working to launch itself amongst the developing nations of the world.

The president said his government was working assiduously to ameliorate the challenges faced by the Nigerian economy within a short period, saying he would tap from the experiences of countries like Iran which had thrived in adversity.

He said that the Iranian economy remained an inspiration for Nigeria in the deployment of technology to harness and export gas, grow food for the populace and promote entrepreneurship in education.

The President noted that Nigeria had all the potentials for growing into a great economy through more inclusive planning, consistency in government policies and commitment to the realization of development targets.

“The progress made by Iran within a short period of 30 years is really commendable. Within the period, you have been able to harness gas flaring, and you are now exporting. You have recorded strides in security, manufacturing, agriculture and technology.

“You have also achieved a lot in nuclear research. I must also congratulate you for successfully negotiating with America and the European countries on the development of your nuclear energy.

“In Nigeria, we are learning. We are learning the hard way through hardship, and we are learning very quickly on how to explore other sectors of the economy like gas, solid minerals and agriculture for growth.

“We are grateful for your support and cooperation in opening up the Nigerian economy for diversification,'' he said.

In his remark, the Iranian envoy who is also the Minister of Foreign Affairs, said the Iranian government would support the ongoing restructuring of the Nigerian economy.

“We are very keen to see a better and stronger relationship with Nigeria, which is the largest country in Africa and a major global player,'' he said.

Zarif said he came into Nigeria with a delegation of more than 70 members of the Iranian business community who had already started discussions in investing in sectors like banking, education, scholarship, agriculture, energy, tourism and technology development.
SOURCE: VANGUARD.

BENEFITS OF CONSIDERING INTERIOR DESIGNING FOR BUSINESS.


If you have a conventional 9- 5 job and you have eyes for designs and decorations, you can consider interior decoration for business. The roots of businesses or careers like this can mostly be traced to passion, interest and few good comments to unconscious work done.

Decorations and designs provides the sense of appeal and functionality in most environment, this is why many people require the services of talented professional designers to make their homes, offices, event venues, churches and so on appealing.

Professional designing goes beyond decorating spaces for events but goes as far as the supervising installation of carpets, furniture and window treatments. Designers also work with lighting and acoustic system professionals to enhance environments, such as a residential media room or a professional concert hall.
There are so many benefits associated with considering designing for business. This includes:

The opportunity to become a boss of your own by managing and controlling your own time
You mostly do not need a conventional big space to run your business as a starter. You can start your business from a corner of your home. All you need is the right ways of networking.

You can run an interior design business as an alternative income source aside from any other thing you do. All you need is an appropriate time management skill and multi tasking ability.

You also do not need a huge capital to start a designing business, there are no need for outrageous materials or expensive equipment to invest in. It is more of skills and ability to do certain things in certain ways. Most of your effort and investment would go to developing yourself and spreading the word about your business.

4 TOOLS FOR INTERNET BASED ENTREPRENEURS.


It is no weak saying that internet is the new reality and that internet has come to stay. The growth of global internet based brands like Facebook, Google, and the various internet based businesses show the tremendous potential and this is a warning to internet based entrepreneurs that the internet is the new reality and they have to buckle up if they will succeed.
The competition is huge and as an internet based entrepreneur, you need to know every available tools that would be useful for you in making your day to day business and activities easier to achieve.

SOCIAL MEDIA: It is amazing how many internet based businesses set up social media accounts and just don’t know how to properly use them. Clearly the social media will help you establish a more visible online presence. Although,being present is not enough, it is what you do with the presence that matters. You can use paid advertising on any of the major social media platforms; Facebook, Twitter and Linkedin to get your business ahead of the competition. Even Government agencies in marketing, PR all make use of the social media to disseminate information, it can be useful for you also.

ONLINE RANKER TOOLS: As the internet becomes the new reality, the competition between internet-based businesses increases steadily. A proper ranker tool will help keep track of your competition’s internet growth and webpage rankings. This will tell you when you need to do way more work.
SEO: SEO tools are the most potent tools to increase visibility and consequently the profitability of your online business. An investment in SEO is crucial if you are concerned about the success of your business online. It would boost your rankings and visibility to those searching for your services and this will make more customers contact you.

BROWSER EXTENSIONS: All internet based entrepreneurs struggle with those situations that require opening too many tabs at the same time and to work from one to the other. Admittedly, this can be a strain and can even make you take extended and unproductive breaks.
Resources like Multi Links (firefox), lets you highlight a large group of links (in the SERPs or webpage), and attempts to open all of them for you at once. With some applications this can be a total life saver. 
These tools are easy ways to success if efficiently maximised.

ANAMBRA RECORDS $5M VEGETABLE EXPORTS TO EUROPE


Monday, July 25, 2016

AWKA-In a bid to underscore the importance of diversifying the economy and attracting more industries to Anambra state, Chief Willy Obiano has confirmed that the concise Economic Blueprint, made up of The Four Pillars of Development; including Agriculture, Industrialization, Trade and Commerce and Oil and Gas he developed on assumption of office has started yielding dividends.

The governor who spoke in Abuja in an interactive session he had with the People of Anambra living in the North central part of the country at the Transcorp Hilton stated that the state is now a socially stable, business-friendly environment attracting both indigenes and foreigners to seek wealth-creating opportunities.
To this end, he told the audience which included the Obi of Onitsha, Igwe Alfred Achebe, Dr Oby Ezekwesili both PDP and APC members of the National Assembly, former Governor Chinweoke Mbadinuju and several others that Anambra State Investment Agency, ANSIPPA, charged with the mandate of attracting and fast-tracking investments in the state has so far attracted over $4.2 billion deals to the state.

The latest investment he confirmed was sealed on Tuesday last week with Zolt Energy Limited to build a 40 megawatts Embedded Power Generating Plant in Ogbaru.

When completed in the next 18 months as scheduled, all the power generated from it will be distributed mainly in Anambra State.

On the state of agriculture, Obiano who was giving a score card of his two and half years stay in office disclosed that "in January this year, Anambra made headlines when it became the first state in Nigeria to export vegetables (Ugu and Onugbu) valued at $5million to Europe. At the same time, our locally produced brand of rice known as Anambra Rice recently emerged the Best Rice in Africa at an African Products Forum in Lagos. Anambra Rice was adjudged better and more wholesome than other competing brands from South Africa, Egypt, Ghana, Morocco, Namibia and Cameroon.”

Our agricultural sector has also attracted investments from 7 companies valued at $1.011bn while the large industrial farms have pushed our local rice production from 90,000 metric tons to 210,000 metric tons. At this rate, we shall soon surpass the 320,000 metric tons we consume in Anambra State per annum"
Obiano told the capacity crowd at the Congress Hall that the Oil and Gas Advisory Committee headed by Dr.Emmanuel Egboga, the former Special Adviser to the President on Petroleum Matters has been charged with drafting a comprehensive Blueprint for the Oil & Gas sector and advising the State on the necessary steps that would ensure the recognition of Anambra as the 10th Oil Producing State in Nigeria.

SOURCE: VANGUARD

Platinum Standard: Tara Durotoye

Tara Durotoye is the Founder and CEO of House of Tara the Makeup company which came up with amazing brands like Okpeke foundation, Fura lipstick, Efunsetan lip gloss, Adumadan powder and lots more. In this edition of Platinum Standard she tells us how she started House of Tara, her experience on Arise Fashion Week, the impact of the business and Tara products.

AGRIBUSINESS: THE NEGLECTED WAY OUT IN A FAILING ECONOMY.


Agribusiness simply implies a business that involves agricultural production.  It includes agrichemicals, breeding, crop production (subsistent farming and commercial farming), distribution, farm machinery, processing, and seed supply, as well as marketing and retail sales.  Every branch of agricultural production from start to finish all contributes to a functional agribusiness system.  It also covers the supply of agricultural inputs, the production and transformation of agricultural products and their distribution to final consumers

Agribusiness is characterized by raw materials that are mostly perishable, variable in quality and not regularly available. The sector is subject to stringent regulatory controls on consumer safety, product quality and environmental protection. Traditional production and distribution methods are being replaced by more closely coordinated and better planned linkages between agribusiness firms, farmers, retailers and others in the supply chains.

Many tropical countries have good soil and climatic condition suitable for the cultivation of various food and cash crops in high quantity but since the oil boom in Nigeria, the agric sector has been left lagging. The agriculture sector which could be a main source of revenue generation for the nation has been neglected in the past years.

The current economic recession and global devaluation of crude oil is evidence that the dependence on crude oil would no longer cut it for nations like Nigeria. There are so many agribusiness options to consider if one is thinking of ways to invest into agribusiness profitably. Agribusiness management involves the application of business skills such as marketing, economics, finances, management etc into the agricultural industry. This makes it obvious that agribusiness goes beyond farming and harvesting but also, all parameters applicable are to be considered to ensure that agriculture is done efficiently and profitably.

This is a wakeup call for everyone looking for an opportunity to earn a living or ways of improving your productivity and income, that the agricultural sector is a fruitful sector to consider. Agribusiness has been one of the main generators of employment and income worldwide.

Interior Design | How I became an Interior Designer | Pt.2

Interior Design | How I became an Interior Designer Pt.1

The most popular Interior Designer Rebecca Robeson shares her personal story in a up-close and detailed description of her journey from childhood to today.

JOSEPH BENJAMIN: ACTING AND MORE


Joseph Benjamin is a Nigerian actor, model, Voice-over Artist and television presenter mainly known for co-hosting MTN's Project Fame, a talent reality show, and starring in the movies Tango With Me, Mr. and Mrs., and Murder at Prime Suites.

Benjamin was born on 9 November 1976, to a Kogi State indigene father and an Anambra State mother. He attended primary school in Benue State and completed his secondary education in Lagos State. He attended University of Nigeria, Nsukka, where he earned a diploma in Computer Literacy.
Benjamin made his first movie, Crossroads, in 1991 (alongside Ramsey Nouah and Sandra Achums); however, his screen debut was earlier, when he appeared at age 12 in the television program Tales by Moonlight on NTA

Benjamin has starred in several television series, including Edge of Paradise, in which he was being "crushed on" by his neighbour’s daughter. He starred with Genevieve Nnaji in the drama ‘Tango with me’ and has appeared in TV and radio commercials. He has co-hosted, with Adaora Oleh, MTN Project Fame West Africa since 2009. He won the African Actor of the Year award, at the 2012 African Film Awards.

Joseph Benjamin was nominated for Golden Actor in the Golden Movie Awards which held on 21 May 2015. 
He is one rising star who is fun and enterprising to watch.

Kanye West's Greatest Speech Ever

Kanye West addressing and giving an inspiration speech.

FRANK EDOHO: SUCCESS IN BROADCASTING


Frank Edoho is a Nigeria Broadcaster and TV host who became popular for being the host of the “Nigerian Edition of Who Wants To be A Millionaire”,  a popular game show in the world. 
Frank graduated from University of Calabar.

He started his broadcasting career as a Presenter on an entertainment shows at the Cross River Broadcasting Corporation. He anchored a Breakfast Television for three years at NTA Channel 9, Calabar. Frank entered into full-time broadcasting when he graduated from the University and got employed as an Editor, News Producer and Presenter at DBN Television.
He got a job with Metro FM 97.6. There, he anchored programs like ‘A.M Lagos’, ‘Cruise Control’ and ‘Masculine Line’. His approach and style on those programme earned him many audience and fans.

Frank became famous for being the host of the popular TV show “Who Wants To Be A Millionaire?” by making his contestants feel comfortable and engaging in mind easing conversations, and at the same time posing challenging questions to them.


Frank is also reputed with being a renowned voice-over artist who has voiced TV ads and Radio jingles for several companies including Castilla Furniture, Coscharis Motors (Authorized Sole Dealer of BMW), Elizade Toyota, International Bank Plc, Muniches, Novena Majesty Furniture, Zinox Computers, Vogue Fruit Juice, Nigerian Breweries Plc, Unilever Nig. Plc (Close-up Toothpaste), First City Monument Bank etc. He is also known to be a good actor for his roles in some movies.

Some of the awards he has received includes: The Youth Ambassador award by Fly Networks, ‘The City People Magazine award as the best TV presenter’ for the year 2006 andThe male TV presenter of the year by Nigeria Kids Choice Awards’ in 2008.

Frank is a talented TV personalities that is inspiring to watch and emulate.

CBN APPROVES SHORT TERM FACILITY FOR SKYE BANK


The Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) has affirmed its confidence in Skye Bank Plc., through a guarantee line, which ensures that withdrawals it suffered in the wake of the undue panic recently does not adversely affect its operations.

This development, analysts believe, lends credence to the regulator's earlier assertion that Skye Bank is a Strategically Important Bank (SIB), with substantial market share, interconnectedness and significant relevance to the nation's financial systems stability.

A leading international news organisation, Bloomberg, reports that the apex bank confirmed this development through a statement by the CBN spokesman, Isaac Okoroafor, who said the undisclosed guarantee sum would assist the bank to shore up its liquidity and maintain its level of operations.

"The short-term lending facility will allow the management of the bank to ensure that some withdrawals it suffered in the wake of the undue panic recently do not adversely affect its operations," Okoroafor said.

In addition, "the CBN issued guarantees to depositors and creditors of Skye Bank as a demonstration of the bank's health," Okoroafor further explained.

The guarantee line is coming on the heels of CBN's recent intervention in the bank following the voluntary resignation of the Board of Directors of the bank and the consequent re-constitution of the board with a new management team led by Mr. M. K. Ahmad and Mr. Adetokunbo Abiru, who emerged as Chairman and Group Managing Director respectively.

The CBN guarantee will not only enhance Skye Bank's interbank trading and activities but also provide assurance to other banks to continue to deal with and trade with its instruments in the interbank market.

The CBN had similarly introduced a bank credit guarantee package for some banks in 2009 in the wake of the global economic crisis, which affected both the local and global financial markets.

The bank guarantee programme enables financial institutions to meet their financing needs during a period of record high credit spreads and aids the successful return of the credit market to near normalcy, despite the recession and slow economic recovery.

The affirmation of confidence in Skye Bank continues to grow as no fewer than two state governments have expressed confidence in the bank's ability to deliver on crucial mandates in the last two weeks. First, it was the Lagos State government, which directed its Ministries, Departments and Agencies (MDAs) to establish business relationship with the bank on account of its track record and pedigree in mandate execution.

"We had earlier reported that on Monday, July 18, 2016, the Kogi State government re-appointed Skye Bank as lead collecting bank for its Internally Generated Revenue (IGR) and services. The appointment ensures that the bank is responsible for collecting all its revenue just as other agent banks are required to pay their collections to Skye Bank on behalf of the state government."

 SOURCE: THE SUN