By Charles Segun Adegbite
Some people are drug addicts, many are sex addicts, but the Vice President of National Association of Chambers of Commerce and Industries, Mines and Agriculture (NACCIMA) and Chairman of Yodeson Group of Companies, Asiwaju Solomon Kayode Onafowokan is different, he is a success addict.
A successful industrialist, astute business man, outstanding community leader and Fellow of the British and Nigeria Institutes of Directors, is a holder of the national award, Officer of the Order of Niger (OON).
This septuagenarian proved to the world again recently that he is addicted to success at the installation of His Majesty, Oba Babatunde Adewale Ajayi (FCA) as the Akarigbo of Remoland, Ogun State.
Onafowokan, who is the Asiwaju (Leader) of Remoland, was the chairman of the Akarigbo Coronation Committee and he did a great job by ensuring that the historical event was extremely successful.
At the royal banquet organised for the new monarch after the coronation, Onafowokan told everybody there that failure is an orphan and success has many cousins. And that he could not afford to fail because all he knows how to do is achieving success.
For over five decades, from the time he joined the Nigeria Airways in 1960 and a multinational company, Chellarams Plc in 1963, till date , Eskay (as he is nicknamed and fondly called) has consistently proved to the corporate world that he is a success oriented person.
He is now so addicted to success that he could no longer stop succeeding: a great model to youths and emerging leaders.
His addictedness to success has also been inherited by his four sons who were all well trained either or both in Europe and America.
His son, Mr. George O.K. ONAFOWOKAN who bagged Bachelor’s and Master’s degrees from UK universities is the MD/CEO of Coleman Wires and Cable. George Okay (as nicknamed) proved his business acumen and expertise by growing the Company’s assets turnover from N100Million in 2002 to over N15Billion by the end of 2014.
Another son, Engr. Michael O.K. ONAFOWOKAN who also bagged his Master’s degree in Chemical Engineering from UK is the Executive Director of Coleman Wires and Cable.
Engr. Okay (as nicknamed) being the Executive Director with engineering mind, championed the propelling of the machinery production capacity of the company from the 1,200 metric tons of copper in 1998 to the present level of over 15,000 metric tons.
His son, Engr. Bimbo Onafowokan is holding sway as the Managing Director/Chief Executive Officer of Power Systems Limited. He has contributed greatly to the growth of Eskay Petroleum before becoming the MD/CEO of Power Systems, a subsidiary of Yodeson Group of Companies.
Another son, Mr David Oluyomi ONAFOWOKAN who is the Managing Director/CEO of Eskay Petroleum Company Limited , is a graduate of the University of the West of England, Bristol, who also bagged Masters degree at the University of Houston, Texas. He started as the Chief Operating Officer of Eskay Petroleum, and became Executive Director in 2005. He was however elevated to the post of MD/CEO in 2014
Suffice to say that apart from being well schooled in UK these success driven sons of Onafowokan have all worked in well established organisations in Europe where they have learnt the rules of business world and success tactics before returning to Nigeria to take over their father’s companies.
Of course, having understood the principles of success, Asiwaju Onafowokan mentored these his children early for success (just as he is doing to his other children) and consequently carried out his succession plan on time for them to become fully addicted to success and run his group of companies very well.
To this outstanding and successful man, success is not complete without a successor. This clearly explain why he is doing what he is doing; so that in Nigeria there can be more companies built to last, in line with what Jim Collins and Jerry I. Porras described as Successful Habits of Visionary Companies in their book, “Built To Last”.
The reason is simple, “All is well that ends well”.