It is time to link Nigerians and all Blacks in the Diaspora with the Nigeria business tourism environment, with particular reference to the locals, who are owners of small and medium scale businesses. To this end, the Founder and President of La Campagne Tropicana Beach Resort, Otunba Wanle Akinboboye, has launched a new business initiative, which he has tagged, Business Bridge. Business Bridge, which is to serve as a link between the local and international fronts, he said is part of the 52 tourism products promised by him.
His promise was to release a product weekly to the Nigerian tourism market as his own way to encouraging the development of local tourism products for Destination Nigeria. Business Bridge, which is week five product, him noted, “our product this week is Business Bridge, this is as he disclosed, “in the creation of Business Bridge, we are still making sure that the different tourism products we are creating, are inter- woven and inter-related.
We are also being mindful of our present economic situation in Africa, but particularly in Nigeria, viz a viz the value of the dollar. “The idea for us is to transform our disadvantage into an advantage. The disadvantage is that, an African in Diaspora’s $10,000 is equivalent to almost N10m to- day. We believe that can go a long way to help the SMEs. There are several businesses that can be created, or jump-started with that amount of money.
‘‘That’s not much to an average Diaspora but because they do not know what to do in terms of investment in Nigeria. They do not have the expertise or know how to come and sit in Nigeria with a $10,000 investment because they are probably still at work or have their other businesses in America, Europe and Asia. “So we are creating Business Bridge to connect the resources, with expertise.
I will give an example. We have 840 kilometres of beach front in Nigeria, across six states. Majority of youths in these environment are skilled fishermen. And it takes very little for them to start a fishing business, which entails getting a local fishing boat, fishing net, hooks, and other necessary needs to start a fishing business. He further added, ‘‘but they do not have the resources. So what Business Bridge will do is to get Nigerians in Diaspora to invest into the expertise of these young fishermen, and with that investment, a profitable business can be jump started.
With a bank in the middle and business managers. ‘‘While we put the business online so the investors can monitor the business and know what is happening on a daily basis. Each boat is fitted with a solar camera, which allows the Diaspora investor to watch and monitor the business from anywhere he or she is around the world. The business manager is responsible for managing.Forty percent goes to the investor, 40% goes to the fisherman and 20% goes to daily administration and also the payment of those extra people running the business.
“When that investor has experienced 300% returns on his investment, he will be advised to exit for the empowered fisherman to continue. We see this as a great opportunity for people in the Diaspora, who are from the riverine areas, to empower their local folks in Nigeria. “The beauty of this again, is that, this tourism product will jump-start the green economy associated with our approximately 840 kilometres of beach front. With this, young tourism entrepreneurs can benefit by applying as managers of these different businesses.
‘‘It is our believe that this new tourism product along with our first tourism product of the week, which was Diaspora Nigeria Economic Recovery Programme (DNERP), will bring in thhe much needed investment into Nigeria.’’ Other tourism products in his repertoire, which he has released in line with his commitment of unleashing 52 tourism products to the Nigerian market within a year, include: Diaspora Nigeria Economic Recovery Programme (DNERP); Young African Tourism Expedition (YATE); and Kamp Afrika.