The Cambridge dictionary defines a tribe as a group of people, often of related families, who live together, sharing the same language, culture and history. It is in this light that tribe in this piece has been used to describe the tribe of young and middle aged Nigerians who possess similar traits. Traits like blazing new trail, ardent belief in the country in spite of obvious drawbacks, innovating businesses that do good to the society while they also profit from it. A new tribe that understands that continued and persistent complain will not add an inch to their personal well-being or development. This new tribe, if anything has brought a slim glimpse of hope. A new tribe of progressive, versatile and entrepreurial Nigerians. These new tribe understand that their fate is in their hands, they understand that if no one does its part nothing changes. Most importantly, while this new tribe believes that good governance and good leadership play a huge impact in shaping our society they also understand that governance alone doesn’t build the society.
As an entrepreneur and a student of entrepreneurship, I continually look for traits that set apart one entrepreneur from the other. I continually search for the skills that drives their innovativeness and I must confess that these new tribe continues to leave me awestruck. I begin to imagine what and how it would look at if government played its own role excellently by providing the much needed infrastructures.
From healthcare to financial technology to agriculture, education and transportation, this new tribe are doing new things and in some cases innovating and changing how we do things.
In Education there is Tobi Obasa of Davton Learn and and Gossy Ukanwoke of Edutech. While Davton provides a platform for people to learn and sit for certification exams Edutech takes pride in taking African universities online , one degree at a time. Kiakia, She Leads Africa and Social Lender pioneered by Olajide Abiola, Yasmun Bello Osagie and Bade Adesemewo respectively are blazing the trail in lending and financing. Kiakia provides a smart and convenient way to borrow money and lend out money in real time , She leads Africa helps young African women achieve their dreams while Social Lender is a lending solutions based on social reputation. I actually find the solution provided by Social Lender very innovative and you can check them out. These new tribe exist in every facets of our society and to be honest they all are not getting it right but the passion , the commitment and the risk they take set them apart. Time and space will not permit me to go into details into what the start-ups or organizations started by this new tribe do, you are free to check them out at your convenience.
Healthcare is not left out, in this category we have Temitayo Omotayo of Mobile Dentist, Bayo Ojelabi of Highrise orthopaedic, Temie Tubosun of Life bank ,Dr. Ola Orekunrin of Flying Doctors and my good friend Dr. Femi Olaleye of Optimal Cancer foundation.
The Agriculture sector presents a lot of young, passionate entrepreneurs with great innovations amongst these are Osagie Azeta of Crop Safe Agro Allied, Femi Owolabi of Morakempire , Onyeka Akumah of Farmcrowdy,Mosunmola Umoru of HoneySuckles and Nasir Yammama of Verdent Agritech. In financial technology and payment solutions, an area that I find fascinating , you will find my high school senior Mitchell Elegbe of Interswitch, Yinka Adewale of Kudi.Ai , Iyinoluwa Aboyeji of Flutterwave, Simeon Omonobi of Simplepay and Tayo Oviosu of Paga. It is incredible how these various platforms have transformed the way we make payments online.
Transportation and automobile presents the likes of Deji Oduntan of Gokada , an Uber like platform for okada, Etop ikpe of Cars45, Tobi Ajaji of Jetvan automobiles and Bankole Cardoso of Easy Taxi.
Blazing the trail in online and ecommerce are Fikayo Ogundipe of Tolet.com.ng, Lanre Akinlagun of Drinks.ng, Kola Ajayi of Myshayo.com, Mark Essien of Hotels.ng, Obinna Ekezie of Wakanow ,Raphaeal Afaedor and Gbolahan Fagbure of Supermart.ng .
There are also some online store sensations on social media, they stock products and post on those platforms and sell to customers. They make convenience and prompt delivery their competitive advantage. In this category we have Pinkreach Kiddies an online kids store, Snap Addict an online camera store and Yeti Adeyeye of Yetik collections that stocks perfumes , watches and sunglasses. These online and social media stores have also lead to the introduction of so many logistics start-ups that help in delivering the products.
Revolutionising how entrepreneurs start their business with low cost rented office and virtual office is the Box Office Hub, while Foodie24lagos is revolutionising how we eat by providing a 24hour food delivery platform.
In the oil and gas sector specifically in the LPG downstream value chain a bunch of young lads are changing how we buy cooking gas as well as bringing LPG closer to consumers . There is Okebugwu Ikechukwu of Sargas Energy, James Atiti of Doowe Inc., Emmanuel Uwandu of Kiakia Gas, Kayode Oluwadare of ATOGAS and my own younger brother, Tope Olutuyi of Topgas.
Surprisingly , this new tribe have also ventured into social enterprises, these include Bilikisi Abiola of Wecyclers, Adeneyo Idachaba of Multimeth and Njideka Harry of YTF all providing solutions to different social problems.
There is also Hussain Yakubu of Linkifin, leading a financial technology firm that focuses on supply chain finance while Jobberman .com co-founded by Ayodeji Adewunmi is changing how we recruit and search for jobs.
Supporting start-ups with incubation labs and accelerators are Bosun Tijani’s Cocreation Hub and Wennovation Hub co-founded by Wole Adetayo , Michael Oluwagenmi and Idris Ayo Bello.
In Entertainment and lifestyle we have Jason Njoku of IrokoTV and Damilola Asolo of Dapper Wedding Hub. Kendal Ananyi’s Wifi.com.ng is also changing how people access the internet. Branding and communications present the likes of Ronke Bamisedun of BWL agency while Adebola Williams and Chudi Jideonwo preside over Red Media.
In the civic sector and civic engagement is Seun Onigbinde’s BudgIt, helping Nigerians better understand how government’s budget works.
Interestingly the political space also possess its own share of the new tribe, in this category is my friend Tope Fasua, the presidential candidate of the Abundant Nigeria Renewal Party (ANRP), he is also a co-founder of the party, there’s also Kingsley Moghalu a presidential candidate of the Young Progressive Party(YPP) as well as Omoyele Sowere of the African Action Congress Party (AAC) and a host of others. It is worthy to note that while the entrance of this new tribe into the political space may not have any effect on the 2019 presidential elections what they have started today will surely change the course of our politics in the coming years.
The list of this new tribe is not exclusive to those outlined above, there are others making waves, solving problems and creating innovative firms that are changing how we do things who are not mentioned here.
This piece doesn’t in anyway try to advertise or promote the aforementioned businesses but to encourage the teeming youths in the country who think all hope is lost. To be frank, the dearth of infrastructure, lack of security and poor enabling environment can be so discouraging but the fact remains that challenges always present opportunities.
While we give kudos and keep hope alive with the rising of this new tribe it is important to mention that we need more members into this new tribe. We need new tribe in our Police Force who will begin to truly protect its people, shun corruption and treat its people with dignity. We need new tribe in the armed forces who will start treating Nigerians with respect.
We need new tribe in politics and leadership who will start to understand that their role in governance is to truly and genuinely serve the people. The civil service is also not left out, we need new tribe there, who will start to understand how truly important an effective and efficient civil service means to the society. We need new tribe amongst our clerics both Muslims and Christians who will stand up and speak truth to power always, regardless of where they come from or their religious affiliation.
Folks, every facet of the society is begging for the rise of a new tribe. In 2019 become one. Start something. Build something. Solve a problem. Do business with integrity. The old way can no longer take us to where we need to be. We need problem solvers. The society is full of so many society ills begging for solutions.
May the new tribe keep rising.