“If there be any truer measure of a man than by what he does, it must be by what he gives,” a wise man once said. Nigerian-Lebanese businessmen and philanthropists, Ronald and Gilbert Chagoury, need no introduction in business circles within and outside Nigeria. The few who don’t know them must have heard of one of their many business concerns which add immense value to Lagos.
With interests in construction, property development, manufacturing, telecommunications and more, the billionaire brothers have built larger-than-life reputations by taking on gargantuan projects that mere mortals dare not dream about, let alone venture. Apart from doing things big, the Chagourys are also famous for gleefully identifying with Eko, the indigenous name for Lagos.
They are the proud owners of the prestigious five-star Eko Hotel & Suites in Victoria Island, the hotel with the most rooms in Nigeria, as well as the world-renowned Eko Atlantic City, an entire new modern coastal city rapidly springing up next to Victoria Island, and set to be a focal point for investors and a gateway to emerging markets on the African continent.
Beyond business, the Chagourys spirit of doing more than the ordinary and going further than expected has over the years been extended to their philanthropy. This has again been proven by the donation of N1 billion to the Lagos State government to help boost the fight against the spread of the lethal and highly-contagious coronavirus that causes the COVID-19 disease.
The brothers’ donation to Lagos is so far the single largest donation to the state government by a private organisation and once again shows the love they have for Eko. In addition, the hospitality magnates are donating 300 plates of high-quality meals per day to health workers and patients in the state. This gesture adds to the Chagourys’ reputation as giants of global philanthropy. As the saying goes, charity begins at home.