When the World Stood Still for Mike Adenuga @ 70

When the World Stood Still for Mike Adenuga @ 70

If billionaire mogul, Dr. Mike Adenuga Jnr. were a business stock to be traded on the floor of a global Stock Exchange, it will definitely cost a fortune to acquire even a single share.

In other words, if he was a book he would have been a mine of knowledge where many would have benefitted from.

Such is the massive value of the Chairman of Globacom, Nigeria’s second-largest telecom operator with a huge presence in Ghana and Benin.

Little wonder power brokers, captains of industry, friends and associates got together recently to celebrate the man fondly called ‘The Bull’ as he clocked 70, April 29, 2023. On this day, the whole world literarily stood still for the man who has touched the lives of many in several ways. He received barrage of goodwill, adoration and encomium.

Barely a handful of businessmen can lay claim to the rare distinction of rising to the top of their careers in a lifetime. But Adenuga has a very strong claim to this special class of businessmen by standing heads and shoulders above most of his peers.

It is not for fun that he is described as a visionary leader, an exemplary entrepreneur and an outstanding manager of men and resources. Much as he is admired by all, what is not in doubt is that he never entombs his dream in the face of  challenges . Here was a man who, despite the misfortune  he suffered with his ICL in the early days of the telecoms industry, remained unshaken.

Adenuga’s entry into the telecoms industry literally provided Nigerians unrestricted access to what was then viewed as a ‘ big man’s’ tool when Glo crashed the price of SIM cards thus making telephone accessible to millions of Nigerians.

Adenuga did what was said to be impossible in 2003 when Glo became the first company to launch operations on Per Second Billing. The action truly revolutionized the telecom industry in Nigeria because it came at a period when older networks said it was impossible. Adenuga became a household name among Nigerians. He became the hero of millions of Nigerians who paid just for actual time spent on the phone.

With the sterling badges of honour already acquired, the legacy of Mike Adenuga Jnr. is almost complete.

Glo has emerged in its almost 19 years of existence as a keen patron and promoter of arts and culture but the oft ignored fact is that the company’s corporate social responsibility interventions have never been tokenistic.

Globacom’s enormous revolutionary investments in the Glo1 cable has today earned the company the endearing sobriquet; Grandmaster of Data.

Truth be told, Adenuga’s success also put truth to the logic that businessmen are prophets of enterprise. They are the illustrious popes of commerce, robed and mitered in the resonance of their exploits. More often than not, they rise through the fog and the fire of enterprise to tower in dominion astride chains of businesses and industry.

With stakes in the Equitorial Trust Bank and the oil exploration firm Conoil (formerly Consolidated Oil Company), many may be tempted to quickly run to the conclusion that the business turf was laid for him by a benevolent god. But the Nigerian magnate started out as a champion of trade, constantly battling the odds to protect the image he has created for himself. Adenuga grew through the years to become the giant and authority in his fields today.

Rewind to 1990 when the then 37-year-old Mike Adenuga was named among 11 Nigerians who were issued licences to participate in the oil and gas industry. The young Adenuga had become a millionaire selling soft drinks and lace materials.

A little over three decades after, Conoil has become the stand-out success story with six oil producing blocks highlighting Adenuga’s doggedness, diligence and entrepreneurial acumen. Conoil engine oils and lubes are nationally recognised as some of the most pocket-friendly in the market in a clear instance of the company adhering to the business principle and brand purpose of putting people over profit.

Despite his wealth, Dr. Mike Adeniyi Adenuga Jr, GCON, a mercurial businessman, quiet philanthropist, serial entrepreneur and Africa’s second richest man has never lost sight of the fact that money will be made even if profit remains the least consideration.

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