Oyinlola took part in our Road to Growth programme from 2019-2020.
Now I have been able to get loans and that has helped with the challenges we have faced.
Oyinlola is the Founder of Jedi & Co Lifestyle in Nigeria. She is the one of the 1,700 Nigerian women entrepreneurs to have participated in our Road to Growth programme, which from 2019-2020 supported her to develop her capacity building skills so that she could look to the future and making her business successful for years to come. A year on, she reflects on her experiences…
My name is Oyinlola Adekogbe, I am the founder of Jedi & Co Lifestyle, a brand for stylish, confident and limitless women. We create work shoes, casual shoes, and corporate shoes from sizes 36-45. My entrepreneurial journey started by me doing business as a hobby while in school; a friend liked a pair of my shoes and bought them off me.
It is a little more difficult for women to start businesses than men because of lack of funding and lack of personal direction. I think men are often a little more audacious and take more risks compared to women.
The HerVenture app has been amazing. I always recommend my friends to just sign up and try it out. It has real-life simulations of issues that are going on in our business and that takes it beyond theory to the practical aspect.
I heard about Road to Growth from a friend who had just gone through the programme. Previously, I didn’t have a very good understanding of my books and accounting, I was just buying and selling. But through the programme, I was able to understand my profit and loss account, overheads, and expenses.
Through the programme, I was able to understand my profit and loss account, overheads, and expenses.
It was amazing to be with other women in the class and build a community together. Usually, entrepreneurship is a very solo journey so having a class filled with women and knowing I am not alone in my struggles was just wonderful.
The best thing that has happened to me through Road to Growth programme has been clarity, having a clear-cut path to growth. During the programme, we had to develop a growth plan, and my growth plan included launching a product line. I was able to launch this product line, and it has added over 50% to our revenue and our customer base.
My business’ major problem before I joined Road to Growth was funding. I started my business solely self-funded, but now I have been able to get loans and that has helped with the challenges we have faced.
During the COVID pandemic my profits were affected, but thanks to what I learned on Road to Growth, I realised that I had to find the minimum viable product that we could sell despite the pandemic. That was what kept us afloat.
My business will have more impact when we can hire more people. The Nigerian economy is very dependent on entrepreneurship at this point, so we are happy to bring in more women to help us build a brand. I look forward to Jedi & Co Lifestyle to becoming a lifestyle brand that is loved and known by all Nigerian woman.
Having a successful business to me is being empowered and able to empower other women so they can go ahead and live successful lives. In the African economy, the moment you empower one woman, you are empowering her children and granting support emotionally, financially, and psychologically to all the people around her. That is the impact Road to Growth is having.”
Having a successful business to me is being empowered and able to empower other women so they can go ahead and live successful lives.
Find out more about Road to Growth in Nigeria
Road to Growth is one of the Foundation's three flagship programmes, which also include HerVenture and the Mentoring Women in Business programme. The programme is delivered over seven weeks, covering a new topic every week. Road to Growth is currently delivered in Nigeria, Kenya and Guyana.
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