Nigerian youths should stop saying there are no jobs … I started business with N7,000 — CEO, Abidas Leather Works

Seven thousand naira (N7,000). There’s barely much that amount of money can do for anyone given the plumeting value of the naira.

But for Abidakun Oluwafemi Ifedayo, it’s enough to build a lasting fortune.

In a country like Nigeria where unemployment is going through the roof at the tick of every second, youths like Ifedayo are taking the gauntlet to grind something out of the seemingly impossible.

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In this interview with CRISPNG, the Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of Abidas Leather Works, talks about his foray into business, his dream to impact the society and how youths can engineer social change in Nigeria.

Excerpts:

Tell us about yourself

My name is Abidakun Oluwafemi Ifedayo.
I hail from Akure, the capital of Ondo State, South Western, Nigeria.

How did Abidas Leather Works come about?

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Everything started about six years ago when I first aquired my first skill is which bag making. I found it so interesting and I began to develop so much passion for it and that led into research to know more about leather works. From my findings, I discovered that leather works is one of the oldest profession in the history of mankind and that it’s so wide.

Then the vision of creating my own dynamic leather world came in 2015. With the vision, I went further to learn about other departments/aspects of leather works (shoe making, automobile upholstery and furniture upholstery). And by the grace of God I have been able to combine these various aspects of leather works under a name ABIDAS LEATHER WORKS. The name ABIDAS is from my surname, Abidakun.

What are your major services?

Our services include: Shoe and bag making, automobile upholstery work, furniture upholstery works (new and repairing), leather pouch for smart phones among. Aside the above, we also offer trainings.

How has it been running the business financially?

It’s still a small scale business for now and since where are just starting, I think we aren’t doing bad financially.

What has been the major challenges facing the business?

What I can call the major and biggest challenge is that majority of we Nigerians neither believe in ourselves nor value our own products.

The average Nigerian would prefer a product that is made in China or made in Italy, USA, Turkey among others rather than buying the same product with the same quality even with a lower price ‘Made in Nigeria’ product. It’s very very discouraging.

With your experience, what can you say about starting a business in Nigeria, especially as a youth?

Starting up a business in Nigeria as a hustling youth, I was faced with so many obstacles like lack of capital, discouragement that will tell you one thousand reasons why it won’t work and many others.

But let me say this, Nigeria is one of the country where anybody is free to start anything provided it’s legal. It’s just that we youths of nowadays, always want to build our Rome in a day.

As a youth, the first thing you need is your vision/idea. Then, with the little capital you have, you are good to go. I started with N7, 000.

What I can call the major and biggest challenge is that majority of we Nigerians neither believe in ourselves nor value our own products.

How do you intend contributing to the society through your works?

Like I said earlier, we are conducting trainings people (majorly youths). Not just that, we engage them. In so doing, we’ll have more productive youths and less idle youths in the society. Even the society will be at peace since the idle hand is the devil’s workshop.

Do you think the youths can engineer the change this country needs?

I’ll say yes. However, we must first change our orientations. I can’t imagine myself complaining of no job when I can create job for myself and for others.

Many youths like you out there are complaining of no jobs, what’s your advice to them?

Why complaining of no job when you can actually employ people? Even when there is no, create one. There are jobs everywhere.

Below are samples of his works:

2 COMMENTS

  1. The kind of shoes u guys produce ehn….very poor quality and u expect us to patronize,I have tried ur products twice now and have since lost confidence in u

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