Nigerian billionaire, Femi Otedola recently revealed that he almost killed himself when his investment in the diesel business failed in 2008.
He made this statement at the 50th birthday celebration of the Chief Executive Officer (CEO), of Geregu Power Plc, Akin Akinfemiwa, on the 11th of July, 2023 in London.
Otedola said, “I built a massive empire. I had 93 per cent of diesel at my fingertips. I was a bit playful, and the business collapsed. The option I had then was to commit suicide. Then, of course, I thought of Nana and the kids. And I said no, I won’t commit suicide.”
The Oil Mogul added he decided to face reality and sack himself and the business. He said, “So, I sacked myself. I made Akin the CEO of the London office, and I was so impressed by the way he turned around the business.”
Otedola celebrates his relationship with Akin
Speaking in London, Otedola said, “My relationship with Akin is what I would call destiny prevails. In 2005, I had a friend that worked in Oando and she did mention to me that she has a colleague. And she called Akin and we spoke.”
Otedola also revealed that he was looking for a trader when he met Akin. He told Akin of the job and asked him to work for him. “Then of course he went back to Wale and Mofe who were his bosses then (at Oando). And they said you want to go and work for that man? That has sacked six CEOs in 6 years.”
After his $480 million loss, Otedola revealed that he made Akin, “the CEO of the London office, and I was so impressed by the way he turned around the business.”
In the billionaire’s words, “I gave him 1 per cent of the business. I later made him the CEO of Zenon Oil, and then the CEO of African Petroleum which I later changed to Forte Oil.
“When I was making that decision, I knew I have tried, I have failed, so it’s not my destiny. I can’t fall in business because I am an entrepreneur. I can make money but I have to give to Caesar what belongs to Caesar and I found that in Akin.”
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