After graduating with a degree in investigative journalism and reporting from the University of Ibadan in Nigeria, Omoregie found himself in a financial bind.
Feeling uncertain about his future, he spent three days reflecting and reading business books and the idea for Intercontinental Paint was born. In 2006, he launched his manufacturing company in Lagos with less than NGN18 000 (about R1 400).
“For the first six months, I didn’t make any sales,” says Omoregie. “I worked incredibly hard and spent a lot of time planning and revising the business strategy, as well as marketing both myself and the company. I never gave up and focused on building relationships over profit.
Two years later, the company had bought its first set of vehicles, moved into its own facility and employed a team of staff. In 2013, Omoregie decided to expand, so he established an office in Abuja and secured partnerships with various dealers across Nigeria.
The expansion plans, however, raised a number of challenges, which forced the company to re-evaluate its growth strategy.
“If expansion plans aren’t executed properly, they could sink the entire organisation. For this reason, it’s crucial to have a growth strategy that outlines the company’s mission, as well as how to take it to the doorsteps of people,” he says.
Today, Intercontinental Paint is a multi-million-naira organisation with branches in all of Nigeria’s major cities. Omoregie is also the founder of the Young CEO Initiative, which empower young entrepreneurs by providing them with funding and mentoring opportunities.
Looking ahead, he envisages having a presence in every state in Nigeria and expanding to other African countries.
What advice can he offer aspiring entrepreneurs? “Go for your dream and master the game. Success doesn’t come overnight, so it’s important to stay put, even when you aren’t yet making a lot of money.”