SEYI BANIGBE is the founder of Bland2Glam (a jewellery brand), Deterge Nigeria (a management company for cleaning and disinfecting water dispensers in homes and offices) and Nibo & Tac Legal Practitioners. She is a versatile entrepreneur that will stop at nothing to see the expansion of her multiple businesses grow.
Recently, she added another up her sleeves called ‘BINGING WITH GAMECHANGERS’. The show started as an inspirational chitchat before it evolved into what it now and ready to take the market. Seyi’s hard-work has indeed paid off. EM’S Damilola. A. Shote spent a few minutes with her.
EM: Tell us about you and your Educational Background?
Seyi: I’m a lawyer with a MBA from the Imperial College London. I obtained my Law degree (LLB) from the University of Lagos and was thereafter called to the Nigerian Bar. I am a certified member of the Institute of Chartered Secretaries and Administrators (ICSA) UK and the Chartered Institute of Arbitrators (CIArb) UK.
EM: How long have you been in business?
Seyi: About 6 years (depending on which business you refer to)
EM: What inspired you to start these businesses?
Seyi: Bland2Glam – I was appalled at how expensive fashion accessories were priced and sold in Nigeria and thought to disrupt the market by sourcing good factories and suppliers in order to make top quality fashion jewelry and accessories available across Nigeria at guilt-free prices.
Deterge – was born out of me observing that the average Nigerian is not aware (and even when aware) of the health hazards that come with not disinfecting the water dispensers we all drink from. I observed the water dispenser manuals all advise that we disinfect these machines at least every 3 months, but most people just don’t do it hence causing them a lot of gastrointestinal diseases and aches. I thought to come to the rescue of Nigerians by making professional dispenser disinfecting services available at the comfort of their homes and offices alongside educating Nigerians on the need to maintain clean dispensers.
Nibo&Tac – I love solving corporate problems and I am quite enthused by the workings of corporate transactions/entities, hence my passion to support both small and large businesses with my wealth of legal knowledge/experience, acquired through the years (and still acquiring more knowledge every day too). I think what sets my practice apart is our ability to provide premium and professional legal services to SMEs at relatively flexible and affordable rates.
EM: How did you find the businesses when you first started?
Seyi: Every type of business is daunting to start and run. As long as you intend to build something strong, it will task and drain you.
EM: What are the challenges you faced?
Seyi: Major challenges faced with all my businesses are all centered around access to funds, staffing and marketing.
EM: What is your staff strength, and how do you manage them?
Seyi: I employ about 20 people and I must say that managing people is tough, but I’ve been able to make some strides by developing systems and processes that keep us all accountable to the organisation(s) and their goals.
EM: Did you have to train your staff so they can effectively advice your clients?
Seyi: I train and keep retraining. It never ends, no matter how good they get.
EM: What is most exciting about what you do?
Seyi: I’d say what excites me most about running all of my businesses is the ability to cause significant change in people’s lives/companies thereby making the world a better place
EM: What word of advice would you give to women and men who want to start a business in your field?
Seyi: What I’d say to anyone that wants to start a business is to keep going and growing when things are going well and when things are not going so well.