Femi Otedola is one of the names that rings a huge bell in the ears of many people when mentioned in the society today and getting to this level of fame and wealth took nothing less than a lot of hard work, dedication, commitment, sleepless night and a true spirit of entrepreneurship.
Entering the oil business when everything was still booming was to be seen at the time as a normal trend but he went on to change the face of oil importation, exportation and marketing and for this single reason, surpassed all the other people that he had even met in the business as at the time of his arrival.
Today, none of the people that started out with this oil magnate in the same business can claim to be half the man he is now.
Born in the year 1962, Femi Otedola was welcomed into the family of (Late) Sir Michael Otedola (who happens to be a former governor of the Lagos state) and he, unlike many, failed to rely on the affluence and influence of his father, seeking to carve out a name for himself.
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Femi Otedola first saw opportunity to work in a printing press belonging to his family and this was the source of his daily bread till he saw the opportunities that abound in the oil industry, prompting him to make a swift move from the press into oil. Although many people thought how he then with practically no experience in the field, was going to make it but he never let what others thought of him bring him down in any way.
Working hard to get known and raise some money, Otedola finally made his first significant breakthrough when he got enough funds to finally launch and start up his own company, Zenon Petroleum and Gas Ltd, in the year 2003. Through his dedication and commitment to the job, in under two years, he was already a name to be reckoned with in the business. By the year 2005, other big companies such as MTN, Unilever, Nestle, Guinness and even the Dangote group had started to source the services of Zenon for their diesel needs.
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In the year 2015, Otedola sought to rebrand the business and expand its scope, prompting him to change its name to Forte Oil after which he sold a sizeable amount of its shares and assets to Mercuria Energy Group, a move which not only fetched the business some $200 million but also opened the doors to a bigger and better international market to sell for.
Otedola has always shown his ability to carefully study the market and wait for when best to strike, and this single leadership and management skill has fuelled him up to where he is today.
Happily married with four children (three daughters and one son), the business mogul and seasoned entrepreneur is worth an estimated $2.5 billion and is the richest man in Nigeria only behind Aliko Dangote and Mike Adenuga