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LAGOS FASHION WEEK 2021: THE FUTURE STARTS NOW

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Following a pandemic-induced hiatus, Lagos Fashion Week is finally set to return from October 27th-October 30th at the Lagos Fashion Week Tents, Federal Palace Hotel.

#TheFutureStartsNow is the defining theme for this year’s edition which speaks to the need for a global fashion industry that preserves and conserves the environment, and values people over profit. The future of fashion for the next decade and for many more to come starts now. It begins with a community of rising talents springing up across the continent, and with a commitment from our ecosystem to adopt a functional fashion system that delivers environmental, societal and economic solutions that are beneficial for all.

To kick-off the season, we spent time with designers Cynthia Abila, Pepperow, Studio IMO, Elfreda, Maliko, TJ Who, Babayo, GETO, and Vicnate, alongside their muses Angel Obasi, Saleema, Deola Adebiyi, Wole Babalola, and Abiola Sonaike, who shared with us, their imaginings on the future of fashion in Africa.

“The Future of Fashion to me means smart production/consumption, sustainability, innovation and technology’ – Omafume Niemogha “The Future of Fashion to me is inclusivity; Everyone gets a seat at the table”- Samatha Adebayo “The Future of Fashion is in the metaverse for me, a confluence of physical and virtual fashion” – Edwin Okolo “The Future of Fashion is wearable technology: Smart and intelligent textiles/footwear and garments are fast becoming the new innovation” – Cynthia Abila While Lagos Fashion Week returns to the physical tents at Federal Palace, this year’s edition will embrace a hybrid model with digital shows highlighting rising talents from across Africa as well as featuring a distinct exhibition of the selected designers’ collections.

Fashion Business Series, a platform designed to facilitate conversations with key stakeholders in the industry will hold digitally on 27th October, 2021. Speakers include: Aissa Dione, Busayo Olupaona, Chid Liberty, George Gachara, Laureen Kouassi-Olsson, Mariama Camara, Roberta Annan, Tammy Tinker and Viola Labi amongst others. This year, as part of our on-going commitment to facilitate new conversations and exchange of ideas surrounding sustainability in fashion in Nigeria and Africa, Lagos Fashion Week is teaming up with Fru Girls and PopSwap-a new digital community for the Global Fashion Exchange to host an inaugural digitally enabled Swap Shop experience in Lagos which will take place from the 28th-30th of October.

Putting into practice the foundations of a circular economy that prioritizes reuse, reduce & recycle, Lagos Fashion Week will facilitate the exchange of pre-owned items through swapping, sharing, donating and resale. #LFW2021 Line-Up ● Fashion Business Series: 27th October 2021 ● Digital & Offsite Shows: 28th October 2021 ● Physical Runway Shows: 29th-30th October 2021 Heineken Lagos Fashion Week is supported by Heineken, Style House Files, Lush Hair, Advantage Austria Nigeria, OPPO & Nigerian Export Promotion Council.

The countdown is officially on! It’s 7 days to go and the city of Lagos will once again come alive as Lagos Fashion Week returns in full force. For more information regarding the upcoming Heineken Lagos Fashion Week 2021, kindly visit lagosfashionweek.ng or follow our Instagram page @lagosfashionweekofficial. See below for more pictures from the Lagos Fashion Week campaign.

Campaign Shoot Credits: Photography: Demola Mako Creative direction: Chuchu Ojekwe Produced by: Style House Files Makeup: Wura Salvador Hair: Lush Hair Nigeria Muses: Angel Obasi, Deola Adebiyi, Saleema, Wole Babalola, Abiola Sonaike Shoes: Shekudo, Maliko Studios Jewelry: Milola Jewels Models: Beth Modelling Agency (Natse Jeide, Chioma Tagbo )

Design Week Lagos 2021 Overview

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Left-right – Jacqueline Aki, Osaze Ebueku (MTN Representative) Hassan Yazbeck (CEO, Interstyle Ceramics), Arc. Jumoke Adenowo (CEO, AD Consulting), Titi Ogufere (President, International Federation of Interior Architects and Design, Founder DWL), Ekua Abudu (Chairman, Board of Trustees IDAN), Adeyanju Adelakun (CEO, Bang & Olufsen), Michael Loeye (Master Dealer, Bang & Olufsen)

Design Week Lagos (DWL) is the leading design week on the African continent, conceived to present and celebrate the best in contemporary African design across categories while bringing international field leaders and visitors to experience the most exciting work from the region.   Founded by African design advocate Titi Ogufere, DWL was first established in 2019 as a citywide celebration held in Lagos, Nigeria over ten days, promoting creativity, innovation across disciplines, including architecture, industrial design, interior design, furniture design, graphics design, and technology.  

DWL is a growing annual celebration and convening, with core programs including a central exhibition showcasing new work from across the continent, an awards program, and a series of talks and lectures.  In addition to presenting new product design, DWL’s program highlights and explores new pathways in manufacturing methods, illuminating ingenuity and information sharing so that a growing community of contemporary designers can better tap into a rich history of craftsmanship and unique material knowledge across the continent.  

The festival is committed to building a culture of innovation in Lagos and promoting the city as an international hub for design. DWL was created by Titi Ogufere and Essential Media Group and is supported by the state government of Lagos.

2021 Edition Highlights

DWL will take place in various venues across the city of Lagos from October 21st to 31st, 2021. The theme for the 2021 design week is Design Revolution.  Given the limitations of the global pandemic, this year’s program will be tight and targeted, with more robust digital components. Highlights of the program include:

DESIGN KULTURE EXHIBITION 

October 21 – 31, 2021

This exhibition is an annual showcase for sourcing furniture and design objects in Africa at White Space, an exhibition space run by A Whitespace Creative Agency.  The exhibition is a meeting point for decision-makers in the design and manufacturing industry, and a bridge between manufacturers and design practitioners within the region, as well as international buyers, design enthusiasts, and collaborators.  This year’s exhibitors include Studio Lani, Nifemi Bello, Tosin Oshinowo, Olu Amoda, Damola Rufai, Tunde Owolabi, Aga Concept, Tekura, Osaru Alile, Titilailai, Demas Nwoko, Ozioma Onuzulike, Diseye Tantua, Belevence, and Mowarin Christian.  There will also be special projects on view from Maki Oh and Adebayo Oke Lawal. 

DWL 2021 PRIZE

Each year, the DWL Student Competition takes place. Designers are asked to come up with solutions, to meet various needs of the people, the economy, and nations at large. With that comes a lot of focus to problem-solving design regarding urban intervention and innovation. Our aim is to broaden the minds of individuals as well as challenge designers’ understanding of the term “design” and the crucial role it plays in every aspect of our daily lives. We urge designers to consider and foresee the future needs of society that is influenced by the rapid growth in population, availability of materials, development of culture and environmental change.

MADE BY DESIGN DOCUSERIES LAUNCH FOR NETFLIX WORLDWIDE

Made by Design is an original documentary series highlighting architects, interior and product designers in Africa. The first season focuses on a group of creative luminaries across categories living and working in Nigeria.

The series was created and directed by Design Week Lagos Founder Titi Ogufere. And co-produced by Emmy award winning filmmaker Abiola Matesun, the first season profiles thirteen of the top Nigerian creative talents of today, giving an insight into their lives, work, and inspirations. Made by Design is anticipated to debut on Netflix globally in Fall 2021; exact release date TBC.  A full list of designers profiled is here; highlights include:

IFI AFRICAN REGIONAL ROUNDTABLE

In collaboration with Design Week Lagos, the International Federation of Interior Architects / Designers (IFI) will host the IFI African Regional Roundtable on October 21st, 2021. The interactive virtual event will allow the diverse design community in Africa to discuss the IFI Education Policy. The roundtable will bring together over 5,000 African designers, including practitioners, academic institutions, educators, professional associations, policy makers, governments and students.

Additionally, The Interior Design Professional Guide for Africa and the Middle East will be launched as part of the African Regional Roundtable. The book, authored by an interior design expert, Titi Ogufere, is an essential resource and guide to managing and sourcing for interiors projects in the region, with practical guidance, a directory of vendors, and advice from 25 leading interior designers in Africa and the Middle East on how to run an interior project successfully and profitably from start to finish.

For more information kindly click on this Link 👇👇👇👇👇👇👇👇

www.designweeklagos.com

To attend, please register using this link; https://www.eventbrite.com/o/design-week-lagos-26359935893

Check out photos of kpmg high-level lunch for CEOs.

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The exclusive event had business leaders of multinationals within the chamber network come together to network and gain insights on key areas of business growth.

left: Wael Abdallah – Economic Attache Regional Economic Dept for Nigeria-Ghana, Moses Umoru – Director-General CCI France-Nigeria, Cyril Darniex – Head Economic Service, Bashirat Odunewu – Treasurer/Member of the Board of Directors CCI France-Nigeria, Kunle Elebute – National Senior Partner KPMG Nigeria/ Chairman KPMG Africa, Laurence Monmayrant – Consule Generale of France to Nigeria, Usman Mohammed – Chairman/Member of the Board of Directors CCI France-Nigeria, Edodo-Emore Oritsematosan – Secretary-General/Member of the Board of Directors CCI France-Nigeria, Marc Geniteau – Vice-Chairman/Member of the Board of Directors CCI France-Nigeria

Lagos Cocktail Week, Hosting Its 7th Edition

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The Lagos Cocktail Week Press Conference took place at The Wheatbaker Hotel in Ikoyi, Lagos Nigeria on Tuesday 5th October 2021.  The event’s speakers consisted of representatives of the Lagos Cocktail Week, and also sponsors for the upcoming main event. They include; Chidimma Okoli – Events & Sponsorship Officer (Sterling Bank), Chiamaka Efulu – Brand Manager (Star Radler), Bayo Adeyemo – Brand Manager (Absolut Vodka), Berg Baboyan (Diageo Ambassador) One of the judges at this year’s edition – Ronke Bamgbade. (Sommelier & Master Bartender Spronks and Prive).

It’s founder Ms. Lara Rawa, an award-winning mixologist, started off the Press Conference by highlighting the carefully chosen theme of the Lagos Cocktail Week; Diversification and Identifying new Opportunities.

Ms. Rawa mentioned that the inspiration behind the theme is born out of the need to educate the attendees who have scaled through a difficult time as a result of the pandemic.

The Lagos Cocktail week team and its’ partners placed an emphasis on the importance of art and innovation. Specifically, in its 7th edition emphasis will be made on the role of networking and the use of social media to drive growth. A sponsor, Diageo, one of the largest producers of spirits, will be providing a masterclass as a symbol of it’s commitment towards the industry and stakeholders. The brand ambassador for Diageo  – Berg Baboyan in his speech commented on the importance of the visibility and the opportunity Lagos Cocktail Week has been creating since inception,  “ We support Lagos Cocktail Week every year because it’s a great opportunity to truly connect with stakeholders”.

On a lighter note, Ms. Lara Rawa spoke extensively about the entertainment value the event has to offer starting with the popular cocktail village and the bar battle. The Cocktail village will open after the Lagos Cocktail Week Conference.  The Cocktail village is scheduled for October 15th  4PM  and  16th 12 noon. It will be experiential and the guests will sample specially curated cocktails by the sponsors;  Fayrouz, Star Radler, Desperados, Johnnie Walker, Gordon’s Moringa Gin, Mr Dowells, Jameson, Olmeca Tequila, Beefeater and Absolut Vodka.

“The bar battle is the highlight of the Lagos Cocktail Week”, Ms Lara Rawa said..  The 7th edition of the bar battle will differ from the previous years’. In the past, the bar battle consisted of mixologists from Lagos based restaurants and bars.  This year, the participants can be independent mixologists. The purpose of the change is to; promote inclusivity,  create  opportunities, serve as a platform for promotion and growth as highlighted in the event’s theme.

Furthermore, another significant change is that there will be four challenges this year and a winner for each challenge.  These challenges are The Johnnie Walker Challenge, Absolut Challenge, Beer Challenge (Star Radler & Desperados) and Fayrouz Challenge. An exciting raffle draw was held at the press conference to determine what challenges each mixologist will participate in.

To conclude the event, the judges and the bar battle sponsors gave specific guidelines and their expectations for the challenges. In particular, Ms Ronke Bamgbade, Sommelier & Master Bartender Spronks Prive  mentioned that competitors need to embody the art of mixology, be authentic, creative and prioritize the art of flavour blending. To experience the Lagos cocktail week –  tickets are available at https://www.lagoscocktailweek.com/event-details/lagos-cocktail-week-wristbands

Finalists that will be taking part in the Bar Battle

For more information log on to –

Website – www.lagoscocktailweek.com

Instagram – @lagoscocktail

Twitter – @lagoscocktailwk

Reuniting the Community – Lagos Cocktail Week 2021 announces week long activities

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One of Lagos’ most exciting events, The Lagos Cocktail Week is scheduled to hold from October 7th, 2021 to October 16th, 2021. The week-long event follows a one-year hiatus as a result of the Covid-19 Pandemic.  The founder Lara Rawa, an award-winning mixologist promises that the 2021 edition of the Lagos Cocktail Week will be nothing short of exhilarating.

Award-winning mixologist and Founder, Lagos Cocktail Week, Lara Rawa

The Lagos Cocktail Week made its debut into the Lagos scene in 2014, since then the event has enthused many lifestyle lovers and drink brands annually. It is the first event of its kind, allowing lovers of the finer things to enjoy Lagos’ best cocktails and liquor just by simply purchasing a ticket.

This year’s edition will take place at the Balmoral Marquee, Federal Palace Hotel, Victoria Island, a prime destination for an event of this caliber. As promised, the organisers of Lagos Cocktail Week have brought on board some prestigious liquor brands as partners. We are anticipating getting a taste of what Fayrouz, Desperados, Absolut Vodka, Star Radler, Jameson, Olmeca Tequila, Beefeater Gin, Johnnie Walker, Mr. Dowell’s, Gordon’s Moringa and many others have in store for the attendees. Top and upscale bars and restaurants that will be participating in the Lagos Cocktail Week include Brass and Copper, Circa Lagos, RSVP, Slow, Orile, Seetle, South Social, Sao cafe, The Cabin, Stories, Atmosphere, Liquid Hub, Oh la, la, Cafe de Flore, Light House, and Mykonos.

The event will start on Tuesday 5th October 2021  with a conference that spells out the values that the partners share; drinking responsibly and above all celebrating Nigerians in their diverse ways and taste. Subsequently,  an intriguing cocktail village from the 15th to – 16th of October will be erected that allows all guests to explore the nature of each brand and its essence.

Attendees will also get the opportunity to share in these mouthwatering flavours with some of their favorite influencers. The cocktail village is indeed a cocktail in its own; where like minds and beautiful flavors meet to create a memory for the books.  If you are feeling touristy, you can be part of the bar crawl that will be happening at the cocktail village; this allows attendees to go round to the different drink vendors and experience their bars.

For the thrill lovers, something with more action has been planned; a bar battle between some of Lagos’ best mixologists. The face-off will see bartenders battle it out to win the title of Best Bartender in Nigeria. This is the highlight of the week-long event and will round off the Lagos Cocktail Week, it definitely shouldn’t be missed.

During an interview with the founder, Lara Rawa,, she expressed her heartfelt gratitude for the support shown to her by some of the most remarkable liquor brands and restaurants across the country. “ It is such an honour to illuminate an important industry in our culture and society. I am glad that people appreciate the art that is cocktail making. When we are out socialising, we enjoy ourselves and forget there’s someone who has taken their time to craft us a special drink. This event is all about the mixologist and their tools!”, she said.

The Lagos Cocktail week is open to everyone to attend, if you love a good cocktail or two be part of this event! Purchase your ticket at https://www.lagoscocktailweek.com/event-details/lagos-cocktail-week-wristbands

For more information check out:

Instagram – @lagoscocktail

Website – https://www.lagoscocktailweek.com/

Twitter – @lagoscocktailwk

ECA West Africa engages with more than 350 coalition-partners to support women and youth’s entrepreneurship in the region

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 The United Nations Economic Commission for Africa (ECA), through its Sub regional Office for West Africa (SRO-WA), in collaboration with Compass Global Consulting kick started a 3-day hybrid Regional Business Forum on the 21st September 2021 in Lagos, Nigeria. Themed “Empowering Women Youths to Spur Africa’s Transformation Agenda”, sector champions in various industries have been partaking to be a part of this Regional Business Forum structured around high-level meetings, consultations with Business Champions, the youth and women in the West African business ecosystems.

The Forum which is in partnership with more than 350 coalition-partners has witnessed an immense turnover of positive feedback from the opening ceremony. It started with opening remarks by Dr. Vera Songwe, Under Secretary General and ECA Executive Secretary who explained that “The purpose of this conversation is how we can bring the West African woman to leverage the knowledge, the innovation that exists, leverage the vibrancy they have and ensure they can take their businesses one notch higher to the global sub-region and take advantage of markets that are further beyond in the east and the west”.

Dr. Vera Songwe said “In a crisis, the first thing we want to do is ensure we prevent good businesses from falling below and focus a lot on retention. Africa, in particular, the West African region, has the population dynamics working for it. The African population is estimated at 1.3 million in 2020 of which over 250 million are the youth and it is estimated that 10 million to 12 million are entering the workforce every year but only 3.1 million of them find jobs”.

“AfCFTA stands to grow Africa’s GDP by an additional one trillion dollars to deliver on what is needed: first unlocking our borders, building value chains and making sure the African women all work together to create the supply chain for textile, fashion, for agro-industry and essentially grow the value of the products and earn more from that and also they can become sub-regional and wider continental and international businesses and not limited to the geographies in which we exist today> added the Executive Secretary of ECA.

The Honorable Minister of Finance, Mrs. Zainab Shamsuna Ahmed during her session, emphasized why it’s imperative for the society to empower youth and women. “We are hopeful, that this will be an effective avenue for empowering youths and women entrepreneurs and address the unemployment challenges we have in Africa, as well as address the need to create jobs”, speaking on the AfCFTA leverage.

Highlighting the major gaps in the African educational systems and it affects productivity, Mrs. Ngone Diop, Sub Regional Director, West Africa Office – UNECA, said “the region capacity of innovation remains weak mainly because of the deficiencies in the education systems”.

The representative of ECOWAS said that his organization will always be mindful of the roles women and youths play in economic development”. This is to reinstate ECOWAS’ commitment to women and youth empowerment.

Day 1 was fully packed with high level delegates and insightful sessions and speeches that are bound to create major mind shifts to aid women and youth inclusion and advancement in Africa and the world at large. 

For more information, please contact: Tahirou Gouro, Communications Officer, ECA- SRO/WA,

 Email: gouro2@un.org

Sub-Regional Office for West Africa

428 Avenue du Fleuve Niger

B.P. 744

Niamey, Niger

Website: www.uneca.org

ECA West Africa engages with more than 350 coalition-partners to support women and youth’s entrepreneurship in the region

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The United Nations Economic Commission for Africa (ECA), through its Sub regional Office for West Africa (SRO-WA), in collaboration with Compass Global Consulting kickstarted a 3-day hybrid Regional Business Forum on the 21st September 2021 in Lagos, Nigeria. Themed “Empowering Women Youths to Spur Africa’s Transformation Agenda”, sector champions in various industries have been partaking to be a part of this Regional Business Forum structured around high-level meetings, consultations with Business Champions, the youth and women in the West African business ecosystems.

The Forum which is in partnership with more than 350 coalition-partners has witnessed an immense turnover of positive feedback from the opening ceremony. It started with opening remarks by Dr. Vera Songwe, Under Secretary General and ECA Executive Secretary who explained that “The purpose of this conversation is how we can bring the West African woman to leverage the knowledge, the innovation that exists, leverage the vibrancy they have and ensure they can take their businesses one notch higher to the global sub-region and take advantage of markets that are further beyond in the east and the west”.

Dr. Vera Songwe said “In a crisis, the first thing we want to do is ensure we prevent good businesses from falling below and focus a lot on retention. Africa, in particular, the West African region, has the population dynamics working for it. The African population is estimated at 1.3 million in 2020 of which over 250 million are the youth and it is estimated that 10 million to 12 million are entering the workforce every year but only 3.1 million of them find jobs”.

“AfCFTA stands to grow Africa’s GDP by an additional one trillion dollars to deliver on what is needed: first unlocking our borders, building value chains and making sure the African women all work together to create the supply chain for textile, fashion, for agro-industry and essentially grow the value of the products and earn more from that and also they can become sub-regional and wider continental and international businesses and not limited to the geographies in which we exist today> added the Executive Secretary of ECA.

The Honorable Minister of Finance, Mrs. Zainab Shamsuna Ahmed during her session, emphasized why it’s imperative for the society to empower youth and women. “We are hopeful, that this will be an effective avenue for empowering youths and women entrepreneurs and address the unemployment challenges we have in Africa, as well as address the need to create jobs”, speaking on the AfCFTA leverage.

Highlighting the major gaps in the African educational systems and it affects productivity, Mrs. Ngone Diop, Sub Regional Director, West Africa Office – UNECA, said “the region capacity of innovation remains weak mainly because of the deficiencies in the education systems”.

The representative of ECOWAS said that his organization will always be mindful of the roles women and youths play in economic development”. This is to reinstate ECOWAS’ commitment to women and youth empowerment.

Day 1 was fully packed with high level delegates and insightful sessions and speeches that are bound to create major mind shifts to aid women and youth inclusion and advancement in Africa and the world at large. 

The United Nations Economic Commission for Africa (ECA) to Host West Africa Business Forum in September on the theme “Empowering Women Youths to Spur Africa’s Transformation Agenda”

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The United Nations Economic Commission for Africa (ECA), through its Sub regional Office for West Africa, has announced her invitation to sector champions in various industries to be a part of Regional Business Forum structured around high-level meetings, consultations with Business Champions, the youth and women in  the West African business ecosystems .

The 3-day Forum will be held in Lagos, Nigeria from September 21st – 23rd, 2021 using a hybrid format i.e. physical and virtual, due to COVID-19.

The Regional Business Forum will be held in collaboration with strategic partners from across the region/Continent at, bringing together women and youth from across the 15 West African countries, business leaders, the private sector, and SMEs. The forum is set to encompass various activities such as panel discussions, exhibitions, mentoring sessions, presentations and many more.

The West Africa Business Forum is the first edition in a series of stakeholders’ engagements by the Economic Commission for Africa with top business leaders, and sector champions in Africa. The theme of the first ever forum is “Empowering Women and Youths to Spur Africa’s Transformation Agenda”. With Africa being the youngest continent and a projection of Africans constituting a whooping quarter of the world’s labor force by 2050 due to high fertility and declining child mortality rates, it has become imperative to pivot the continent’s demographic dynamics for sustainable development.

The forum is an initiative of the sub regional Office for West Africa of ECA in partnership with Compass Global Business Services, working with a host of Coalition Partners, such as the International Trade Centre, International Labour Office, ECOWAS, Organization of Trade Unions of West Africa, Lagos Chamber of Commerce & Industry, Neca’s Network of Entrepreneurial Women, Association of
Nigerian Women   Business   Network   (ANWBN),   WIMBIZ,   Junior Chamber International-     Nigeria,     Cameroon,     a     host of Youth     Organizations,     and  Women ​Networks across​ the Region.

ORÍKÌ,Group To The World – Oriki Spa wins Spa Of The Year At The 2021 Pyne Awards

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ORÍKÌ, an established spa poised to expand globally is a haven of relaxation and health with 4 locations in Lagos Nigeria (with more in the pipeline) . The ORÍKÌ Spa emerged Spa of the year at the 2021 Pyne Awards.

Founded by Joycee Awosika in 2015, ORÍKÌ is dedicated to making sure its customers are pampered, with wellness, selfcare and happiness at the focus of their core services;  the spa describes itself as ‘the perfect escape’. ORÍKÌ in the Yoruba language means Your Crown/Your Origin and this is what the brand embodies. ORÍKÌ is the first and only all-natural farm to skin brand in Nigeria to operate a luxury spa chain coupled with its own product line.

All branches of ORÍKÌ, offer an absolute sensory experience dedicated to pampering both body and soul in the most natural way possible. Walking into any ORÍKÌ Spa striking features are the luxe space, beautiful ambience, luxurious smell and being welcomed by the friendliest faces – ( an experience that one has to witness by themselves to believe.) 

Founder Joycee Awosika, a serial entrepreneur, economist with a background in the power sector said of the Spa of the year win “I’m so grateful that our hard work is continuously being recognised. In 2020, COVID hit us and naturally we would have all thought that this was it for our sector since it involves touch. However, we’ve been very strategic in our approach which continues to place the health and safety of our customers first. Our unique strategy and approach to COVID  has enabled us to continue to scale and also build out our manufacturing facility, and there’s a lot more in store”

One of ORÍKÌ’s unique offerings is the natural spa products which are made from natural ingredients such as chamomile, sugar cane, and aloe vera.

The spa offers a range of services such as massages, body treatments, facials, as well as products for men and the opportunity to become an ORÍKÌ member.

Joycee Awosika is passionate about Africa and making sure she builds a lasting legacy. ORÍKÌ has locations in Oriental Hotel VI, The Yacht Hotel Lekki, Eden Heights in VI and in Ikate, Lekki.

With multiple spa locations across Lagos and plans of more to come across the continent, the sky is only the starting point for ORÍKÌ.

ORÍKÌ was up against three other spas and won the Spa of the year award at the Pyne Awards. The Pyne Awards celebrate Tourism and Hospitality.   This award shows ORÍKÌ ‘s dedication and involvement in the wellness industry.

ORÍKÌ has some exciting plans for the future so make sure to be on the lookout. The Spa’s 6th anniversary is coming up in October 2021 and they have some special announcements and additions to the brand planned.

For more information about ORÍKÌ

Instagram – @orikigroup

Website –https://www.orikigroup.com/

SunTrust Bank will be a National Bank 6 years from now- Mrs Raliat Oyetunde

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SunTrust Bank will be a National Bank 6 years from now- Mrs Raliat Oyetunde

Mrs Raliat Oyetunde is the Head, SME Banking and Acting Regional Manager, Lagos/West at SunTrust Bank Nig.Ltd; where she oversees the day-to-day activities of the SME Banking, Commercial and branches in the Lagos and West.

Prior to joining SunTrust Bank, Raliat was the CEO/Lead Consultant at Prinsult Global Consulting Limited and a Managing Partner at Blackstone Capital Ltd, where she had the responsibility for the strategic and tactical decisions for the development and growth of the small and medium scale consulting business. She also provided leadership to the capacity-building arm of the company and is the chief liaison officer with Government Agencies and major Financial Institutions in the company portfolio. She also served as the Chief Operating Officer (COO) of GEM Factor Events, a leading event Management Company in Nigeria.

With over 17 years direct experience in Banking, Raliat has held a wide range of financial services and has served in various roles including Public Sector Management, Retail and Commercial Banking via Branch Management and large corporate. She was a key resource in the smooth transition and merger of Oceanic Bank Plc and Ecobank Nigeria Limited in 2011.

Raliat is a Thought Leader on Small and Medium Scale Enterprises (SMEs) with consultancies for Commercial Banks, Bank of Industry (BOI) among other reputable private and public institutions. She is among the Pioneer BOI Business Development Service Providers (BDSPs), a key facilitator for the Graduate Entrepreneurship Fund (GEF) and Youth Entrepreneurship Support Product programme (YES-P). In these roles, she has successfully built capacity for over 10,000 SMEs, launched 100Entrepreneurs within 7 years who have a combined asset size in excess of USD 10million.  She was also a pioneer Judge on Africa’s Young Entrepreneurs (AYE)realityShow for SMEs in Africa.

Her passion for women empowerment led Raliat to launch a new tribe of conversation #womenMORE December 1, 2017.The sole object of this conversation is to help create a new tribe of women catalyst in the society.

Raliat’s areas of expertise includeInvestment Banking,Marketing Strategy,Credit and Marketing,Business Development,Sales,Change Management,Project Management and Motivational speaking.

Raliat Oyetunde is a Certified Learning and Performance Institute (LPI) and International Finance Corporation(IFC)Trainer, a certified Centre for Management Development, Nigeria(CMD) Management Trainer;a certified Nigerian Business Development Service Provider(BDSP); An Associate of the Nigerian Institute of Management(NIM), a member of the Chartered Institute of Bankers Nigeria(CIBN),an alumni of Lagos Business School (LBS), the Enterprise Development Centre (EDC-Pan Atlantic University), Cranfield School of Management (UK), University of Ilorin, and the University of Agriculture Makurdi.

She sits on the board of Aleef Television,Chairman of Cerebral Palsy Centre, Lagos, a member of the Ethical Committee of Nordica Fertility Centre and the Advisory Board of Jordan Hill Creative & Reading Workshop. In an Exclusive interview with Olubukunola Raliat Talks about SunTrust Bank services extensively.

Can you briefly talk about SunTrust Bank ?

We are Nigeria’s Number One Financial Technology (FinTech) Bank, the products and services usually provided in other banks physical branches, are easily accessible through our electronical channels. We strive to create the best outcomes for our clients and customers with financial ingenuity that leads to solutions that are simple, creative, and responsible. The Bank focuses its lending activities on SME Finance, Retail/Consumer Banking, and Medium to large Corporate Finance and explores other specialized Development/Infrastructure financing activities. Our competitive edge will be the strong reliance on technology and the Bank encourages its customers to access its services from the comfort of their homes and offices and as such will not be engaging in a proliferation of branches. At SunTrust Bank, we are passionate about Financial Inclusion.

How many years has SunTrust been in Nigeria? Do you have annex in strategic places?

SunTrust Bank Nigeria Limited was launched to the General Public on August 15, 2016. Inspired by the future, it is a privately held Commercial Bank licensed by the Central Bank of Nigeria under the BOFIA.

We have our Northern Regional Office in Abuja, and Port Harcourt for the South.

From research, the opening of account is free! What are the benefits that’s comes with being an account holder with SunTrust Bank Nigeria Limited?

Opening account with suntrust bank Nigeria is free like you just mentioned. And this comes with a lot of benefits to our customers because SunTrust Bank is poised to create value for its customers by leveraging on our competencies and a team of highly motivated staff, who work tirelessly to develop and provide a broad range of unique financial services and products to consumers, small business, corporations, governments, and institutions which will positively impact their business.

And this can be seen in products and services we have like the SME finance, Retail, corporate, agribusiness Trade finance and the Non Interest Banking window.

A lot of SMEs are springing up day by day What are the services available for SMEs in Nigeria?

The SunTrust bank Nigeria SME banking group supports small scale business to access finance easily for their businesses without collateral and at competitive interest rates.

At SunTrust Bank, we have designed a loan package which helps our SME customers meet their financial challenges, through the SunTrust Bank Flash Loan. This product will enable them have access to fund and expand their business.

The SME Flash is an umbrella product for all our asset products in the SME banking group. The main objective of the SUNTRUST BANK SME FLASH product is to make financing easy for our SME customers that do not have access to tangible collaterals but are desirous of expanding their businesses.

Our aim is also to ensure that all our SME customers are profitable, build sustainable businesses that are scalable, expandable, and exportable; thereby positioning the Bank and Nigeria in the global space.

At SunTrust Bank SME banking group, all our services and product offerings are tailored to suit individual customer to keep their dream alive and experience tomorrow’s dream today.

We have the following:

WOMEN in FASHION (WIF): This is an SME flash variant that is targeted at our women in the fashion business. There has been tremendous growth and worldwide acceptance of the African print, hence we choose to support women in fashion that produces ready to wear and trendy outfits.

These women have improved in their finished products and leveraging on online marketing to showcase these products; At SunTrust Bank they can access loans within the range of N500,000-N10m to aid the expansion of their businesses. These loans are availed within 48hours, and the SMEs have access to our weekly SME clinic.

WOMEN on WHEELS (WoW): The ladies in E-hailing business have proven that an opportunity exists in that business segment. Again, the major challenge of these woman is their inability to own their own fleet of cars for the E-hailing business. A variant of the SUNTRUST BANK SME FLASH has been designed for them to access and help in acquiring their own cars at minimal interest rate over a period of 24months.

SUNTRUST SME CLINIC (SSC): This is SunTrust Bank’s special value add to our small business account holders. They are free to walk into any of our branches or join our SME team virtually for capacity buildings and business diagnostics every week. The clinic gives the SMEs access to collaboration, access to market and an opportunity to become a SunTrust Bank SME ambassador at the end of every financial year.

SUNTRUST BANK SME JAMBOREE: This is a special week event held every quarter. The event is designed such that it brings like small businesses together with providers and buyers to create a fusion. It is the easiest way to have access to market and collaboration. We choose each sector per quarter, and we always have grateful small businesses that see their dreams coming true.

The interest rates SMEs pay back is 16% which is different from other banks in Nigeria, Is there any support from the Government?

Like I said we have designed this package to help SMEs grow their business, knowing that most commercial banks rates are higher and would need collateral.

If we must grow the nation’s GDP then SMEs must be enabled to have access to funds so we decided at SunTrust bank Nigeria to reduce the interest rate with no collateral. All you need is a level 12 officer in government or a manager in a finance house to be your guarantor.

In this digital with a lot of business going online now, can one also open account online without going physically to the bank?

Absolutely SunTrust Bank is the first Fintech Bank in Nigeria. And we have always encourages our customers to relate with us digitally. You can open an account online on www.suntrustng.com, and though our USSD by dialling *5320# and follow the prompting.

You can also reach us for queries and enquiries through email: helpdesk@suntrustng.com; SMEbanking@suntrustng.com or call us on 09082666697, 09083666697 and on our social

Instagram – @suntrustng

Facebook – @suntrustng

LinkedIn – SuntrustNG

What does customer service mean to you and how hasSunTrust team been able to keep old customers?

We strive to create the best outcomes for our clients and customers with financial ingenuity that leads to solutions that are simple, creative, and responsible.

For us at SunTrust bank good customer service is critical to our business success, and this ensures brand loyalty one customer at a time.

Recently, SunTrust Bank supported women in fashion business and female drivers, what is the rationale behind this?

The SunTrust Bank’s Women On Wheels (WOW) is an asset finance product targeted at Female commercial car owners from the age of 18-55yrs. It is meant to support these women to own their fleet of commercials vehicles. The idea came as the SME banking group sought innovative ways to ease lending to women and make them have financial autonomy to achieve various desires of nation building and adding to the GDP of the country.

The First phase of WOW which is a SunTrust SME Flash loan was launched in Lagos in April 2021 for about 100 female Drivers and we have been overwhelmed with demands for the above subject from Abuja. This is the reason we are launching the second phase of WOW in Abuja, for another 100 female drivers, with the first 10 female E-hailing customers ready for market.

These women will make daily deposits into their accounts so the repayment at the end of the month will be very easy. The asset is for 24months and at a very low interest rate.

“WOW” is basically designed for women who are into transport business such as Uber, Bolt, etc. Ownership/Insurance will be in the name of the Bank until the final rental to the Bank is paid by the customer.

And all you required to access this facility is to be a licensed female driver, registered with Uber and or Bolt, and a proforma invoice of any car of your choice not older than Uber or Bolt requires. We hope to take this further by partnering with Auto dealers for brand new cars soon.

Where do you see SunTrust Bank in the next 6 years from now?

SunTrust Bank will be a National Bank 6 years from now.

Aide work, How do you relax yourself ?

I Like to relax with my family, I reading, watch Tv, going to the spa once a month. I like to chill out with my friends.

What is your favourite financial quotes?

“Save more than you spend.

One word of encouragement for SMEs?

Persevere