Ogunnubi: We’re unveiling more markets to create employment

Ms Yetunde Ogunnubi, the Chief Executive Officer, YD Company Limited, a public relations firm, in this interview with FLORA ONWUDIWE, speaks on her alliance with two other companies for an exhibition scheduled to hold in Malaysia, among other issues

What informed the Africa Expo coming up at the World Trade Centre in Malaysia?

Many things, actually, but on top of the list are two apparent factors. First is the fact that the divergence, multi-cultural and ingenuity underlying African fashion is not only relatable to that of Asian, but also the organisers who are convinced to a larger extent that fusion of the two can only breed the next generation of fashion icons and creatives. The second factor is the need to catch up with the gaps brought about by the pandemic and various glitches it had inflicted in the fashion world. There is need for global exhibitions of fashion, creatives and designs that were created when the world was at a pause. So many other reasons, but these two are more remarkable.

What is the alliance between you and the organisers of Africa Expo?

I will say creativity has same language irrespective of the origin of the designers. This is a partnership built on similar intents and vision. Let’s say the nature of creativity brought us together and creating platform to help grow the industry.

This is a giant stride taking YD Company outside the country. What is your major stake in ensuring that both local and international stakeholders become economically viable?

This is a massive project for the YD Company and our Malaysian counterpart, not to mention the numerous opportunities it would afford the participant in showcasing their brands on the international platform and the networking that comes with it. Governments of the countries are looking up to a new market that would create more employment, add to the GDPs and usher in new business moguls. You won’t believe the quantitative and qualitative promises of the Africa Expo.

What are the areas you intend to explore for the one-week Africa Expo?

There are a lot of offerings in the pipeline. You can only think about it considering different sectors of the creatives and brands that would be showcased at the event. The fashion, panel sessions, conference……etc.

How would you convince us that this outing with the ASEAN Chamber of Commerce and Industry (ACCI) and My Events International would elevate our local stakeholders in their own businesses?

The writings on the wall are so evidently glaring. We have thousands of participants consisting of subscribers, designers, sponsors etc

You intend to showcase the aspects of creativity with African fashion and beauty products of different companies, how does that help our Nige- rian economy?

If there is a l e s s o n t h a t the world h a s l e a r nt f r o m globali- sation and econ o m – ics of s c a l e , it’s that country h a v e strengths, specialties and markets that are desirable by others who are willing to not only pay for it, but can as well provide other resources lacking from the other counterpart. When these are maximised, there is specialisation, which allows for efficient utilisation of resources and in general, a boom of sectors and economies of the world.

You said that “our goal is to promote African brands, focusing on the fashion and beauty industries to attract partnerships, investment opportunities, and sales,” how do you intend to achieve this?

The concept is simple, get back out! The world has been static for a while and the order has been disrupted. Now that the doors are opened, there is need to create new investments, markets and products. This would be fast paced with collaborations and international affiliations. The capacity expected from these symbiotic relationships are going to affect FDIs and stimulate economic growth in the region.

We want you to explain the fact that you are not only creating business opportunities for African brands, but also giving them an opportunity to generate highly targeted and lucrative business leads?

In the world of businesses, leading brands often change hands at some interval. Almost in every generation, there are new brand kings. This is an opportunity for African brands to take the leap and lead. This is an avenue to create history. The exposure, networks and business deals that are in the offer-ings would be transformational.

COVID-19 had placed African businesses on red alert and now that some of these businesses are wobbling, how would this exhibition speed up African businesses?

This is one of the reasons for Africa Expo. It is no more news that the pandemic impedes the growth of African fashion sectors, which is understandable, people were inside and now that the doors are open, let’s get back to the malls. The risks are minimal now and the market has reset.

What has been the greatest challenge of this event that involves two continents – Africa and Asia?

The challenges are normal issues that come with events of this magnitude. We have logistics, language and people challenges but none of these are not expected. Conceptualisation of this clearly shows we would face all of these, but we are ready.




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