It is often said that a man’s action today will determine his experiences tomorrow. Sijibomi Ogundele – a rose that grew from concrete, the quintessential luxury real estate magnate, who single-handedly built an estimated $400million dollar company; has not only raised the standard for luxury real estate in Africa, but also, the young and astute Entrepreneur has
become the standard for luxury and excellence in an industry that is widely dominated by top-grade mediocrity and profit maximization over value creation.
Considering his landslide achievements within such a short while, very few under 40s or 50s can stand toe-to-toe with this epitome of hard work and innovation addict. While other businesses are grinding to a halt in a very tough year as 2021, with the rising forex and the economic effect of the COVID-19 on businesses, Sujimoto could not be stopped as they have almost completed their 15-storey Banana Island project – LucreziaBySujimoto; made progress on the Leonardo project and started the design for the Sujimoto Smart city, and Dubai Sujimoto Tower, amongst many other projects. According to Mr. Ogundele, “We were faced with two options; either to give up and give excuses or press on and find opportunities. We went for the later. We converted our fears into fortunes and challenged ourselves to keep building the Lucrezia higher – the most sophisticated residential building in Banana Island! Today, we are way ahead of our timeline.
Speaking about the company’s plan for 2022, in Mr. Ogundele’s word:
“By January 2022, we shall be breaking ground on our 256 piles of 25-Floor Leonardo Tower – a waterfront high rise Development with many FIRSTS! 1st building in Nigeria with the Porcelanosa KRION Facade in Nigeria; Exclusive Boat Club membership, Virtual Indoor Golf Bar; IMAX cinema; 1st building with 14 Private Swimming Pools and many other FIRST!
By Q2 2022, we shall be celebrating the grand opening of the most sophisticated
high-rise in Banana Island –the prestigious LucreziaBySujimoto. We also have the Sujimoto Smart City – first-of-its-kind in Nigeria, a project designed to create a mini Dubai city in Abuja and Lagos, with over 1200 subscription already and still counting. A smart community with unparalleled amenities, perfect for Polo lovers and Golf connoisseurs; a 21st century community where you can live, work and play.
We are also taking Abuja by storm in 2022 with the magnificent Queen AminaBySujimoto Project – a luxury twin tower, mixed-used development that combines 16th century northern royalty with 21st century architecture, detailing the beauty, sophistication and outstanding exploits of the great Zazzau warrior – Queen Amina. That is not all, we are also building the JumeriahBySujimoto – a palatial abode where we intend to build 100 luxury Villas.
We are also looking at other international projects including Sujimoto Tower in Johannesburg, Cape Town and Dubai. We believe that our influence as a brand has gone beyond the shores of Nigeria as a result of the constant calls and emails we receive from people across the continent; from Rwanda to Tanzania, asking us to come and replicate the Sujimoto touch in their country, making it necessary for us to go global.”
Sijibomi Ogundele is an inspiration not only to young entrepreneurs but also to young people in our generation, always reminding people that anyone can come from Ikorodu and become a house owner in Ikoyi. If the late Chief MKO Abiola can come from selling coal in Abeokuta to becoming a national icon, then Nigeria has something for any uncommon, hardworking and diligent entrepreneur who has dreams beyond the challenges of our environment.
Even in the middle of the COVID-19 pandemic when businesses were slowing down, Sujimoto could not be stopped. The company was able to raise funds from Providus Bank – a future thinking bank, who saw beyond the current state of the business environment and invested in the dream of a young and audacious man.
Greatness comes from the consistency of doing the little things right. About 3 decades ago, the great industrialist – Alhaji Aliko Dangote of Dangote Group – which is one of the largest private-sector employers in Nigeria and Africa, borrowed $3000 from his Uncle to start his business which he eventually turned into a multi-billion dollar corporation. Today Alhaji Dangote is not stopping but even during the pandemic, he continues expanding his empire,
finalizing the construction of a 19 billion dollar refinery.
According to Mr. Ogundele, “For us at Sujimoto, we study the icons of our generation – the Aliko Dangotes, the Abdulsamad Rabius, the Adenugas, the Innosons and many other uncommon entrepreneurs. We always look for what we can learn from their strengths and weaknesses. We realized that many extraordinary people see opportunities where others see calamities, and the recession of a nation is the best time to redefine, re-strategize and open your eyes for the next opportunity lurking in the corner.”