In the last two decades, Nigerian billionaire, Femi Otedola has been in the spotlight as a shrewd businessman. To his admirers —including detractors— Otedola is certainly an intriguing personality who has dealt with conspiracy theorists and fifth columnists. Yet, his calm mien makes it easy to underestimate him, but that will be at your peril.
For some years now, many have subtly been probing deeply into his personal life while others are eagerly waiting to learn more about Otedola’s business ethics and secrets via his memoirs. They know it will simply be an unputdownable copy to own. Meanwhile, the man at the centre of it all wasn’t oblivious of this expectations and thus about eight years ago, commissioned two of Nigeria’s best writers —Kunle Bakare, publisher of Encomium and Simon Kolawole, publisher, The Cable— to help him put his ideas and business secrets into a compelling read for all.
The two gentlemen —who are masters of fluid narration— have since helped Otedola to deliver a fascinating and insightful business book. In November 2019, Otedola announced the final wrap of a series of interviews on the book conducted by Bakare and Kolawole spanning 18 months across Lagos, Monte Carlo, Paris, New York, London and Dubai. Set against a backdrop of momentous events he has lived through, Otedola reveals his ‘secret weapon’ of noticing and exploiting business opportunities much earlier than his contemporaries, building political connections and surviving the storms. Spotlight learnt that after nearly two years delay, the energy tycoon is ready finally to release the memoirs for public consumption.
He recently decided to whet the ‘appetite’ of some discerning minds after he dropped some snippets off the book during his tribute to former military President, Ibrahim Badamasi Babangida, who clocked 80 a couple of days ago. But Otedola has chosen a November date for the unveiling of the much anticipated business lessons book —primed to be a bestseller— possibly to coincide with his 59th birthday on November 4.