Kayode Akinyemi


Interviewed by Funke Olaode

What does clocking 50 mean to you?
I thank God for sparing my life and for all He has done in my life. I feel highly fulfilled and praise God for giving me a caring wife and children. I thank God for a successful career, shelter over my head and all a man can pray to have at 50.

What factors shaped your life?
I am indebted to my parents for a good upbringing and for giving me a good education. I cannot but mention my wonderful wife for her fervent prayers, counseling, friendship and guidance at all times, she is indeed a pillar of strength and support. Professionally, I have worked with many bosses and colleagues but Mr. Akinsola Akinfemiwa stood out. He encouraged and trained me to be the best on the job.

So also are my other bosses and colleagues at Skye/ Prudent banks, Vanguard Newspaper, Optimum Exposures, Centrespread Advertising and other places I have worked. Finally, I am indebted to Senator Babafemi Ojudu and the late Deputy Governor of Ekiti State, Mrs. Funmilayo Olayinka for my foray into politics and governance in Ekiti State.

What was your childhood aspiration?
I never set out to be a marketing communications practitioner. While I was in primary and secondary school, I never had any profession in mind, but after my secondary education in 1982, I got a job with an advertising agency called Nigerian Creative Promotions as a clerk. That was where my love for marketing communication started. In 1986, I left the agency to study mass communication at The Polytechnic Ibadan and from there to Ogun State Polytechnic Abeokuta for the Higher National Diploma. I have not done anything other than marketing communication.

What was your growing up like?
I grew up in my village in Afao-Ekiti in Irepodun/ Ifelodun Local Government area of Ekiti State. My primary education was in the village and secondary school at a neighbouring village called Igbemo-Ekiti. Life was good growing up even though it was a rural area but communal life was exciting. Going to church was compulsory and you must take part in church activities.

Can you share some of your fondest memories?
Going to the farm with family and friends after school and during holidays was great fun.

Can you recall campaigns you supervised that made remarkable impact?
My role while at Skye Bank as Head of Corporate Communication especially managing communication during the merger of five bankers that came together to form Skye Bank. Apart from that the “Yes” campaign we launched shortly after the bank took off was a huge success. People were so much in love with the campaign that it became a ringtone on many phones.

How and where did you meet your wife?
I met my wife in 1999 at my office in Vanguard Newspaper. I was the deputy head of the advert department and she came to place an advert. On seeing her, something struck me that she will be my wife. We got married less than a year after on November 4, 2000.

What lesson has life taught you?
With God, all things are possible. By providence and dint of hard work, I moved from being a journalist to a thoroughbred marketing communications practitioner. God, people and fate played a big role in my life.