For over 35 years, he traversed the corporate world, occupying strategic positions in sales, marketing, corporate and government affairs, general management and became an expert in export operations about which he has written a book—a book that is relevant, very relevant in a country like Nigeria, trying to diversify from oil dependency to non-oil export business in a shift in paradigm.
For all entrepreneurs who want dollars, who want to take their products outside Nigeria, who want to learn the nitty-gritty of export trade, Bala Yesufu, has written this practical book titled Export Architecture Road Map—The Nigerian and Global Perspectives. A book that no corporate organisation wishing to do international trade can afford to ignore. A book that is timely. A book that is not couched in trade jargons but easy to read and understand. A how-to-do-it book on export.
The other day, I wrote a column making a clarion call for more books about the Nigerian corporation and here is one such book. Yesufu wrote the book to mark his 60th birthday. I just got a copy of the book and I am really learning a lot from it. It covers everything from the importance of export trade, how to learn the business, how to make money from export business, how to guard against cloning and counterfeiting, the increasing role of China in global trade, risks associated with export trade, corporate governance in export trade and so many other competencies you need in international business.
As I said, I am learning a lot, particularly in the area of intellectual property and piracy which is the concern of every publisher in Nigeria today. It is one book I will recommend to every Nigerian and corporate organisations. I am not the only one praising this book. Let’s start with His Highness Muhammad Sanusi, the Emir of Kano and former governor of the Central Bank who wrote the Foreword: “If Nigeria is to avoid being left stranded long after the train of global industrialization and economic development had left the station, there must be a paradigm shift, from importation to exportation. There must be a change of mindset, from consumption of imported goods to locally manufactured or produced ones, not only for the domestic market but also for export…This book is a compendium of the robust and practical experience of the author in non-oil export business management.”
Here are other voices on the book. Bola Akingbade, Chairman/CEO Brandville, Former Marketing Director, Nigerian Breweries, former Chief Marketing Officer, MTN Nigeria: “This seminal, groundbreaking work by Bala Yesufu, a powerhouse of knowledge and expertise in professional export management and administration, is a major step forward in responding to this all-important national challenge. The well-written book is an eye-opener for both current and prospective players in the export sector.”
Amir Shamsi, MD/CEO, Cadbury West Africa: “At a time when Nigeria aims to build its second base cargo for its economy other than oil export… Bala has decided to write a book on export business management, especially non-oil exports. His wealth of experience in the field of exports augmented with the nuances of corporate and government affairs will give the reader real insight on how to develop exports. This book will serve as a veritable road map for individuals, students, researchers, entrepreneurs and corporate organisations.”
Ben E. A. Oghojafor, PhD, Professor of Strategic and Entrepreneurial Management, Deputy VC, Management Services, University of Lagos: “This book is a must-read for all intending exporters because it’s the ABC of export in the non-oil business. It lucidly traverses all areas of management (marketing, finance, insurance, human resources management, international business, investment, economics, corporate governance, foreign exchange etc.) in the non-oil export space. It also strongly canvasses for the pursuit of agro-business export with attendant benefits to countries in addition to identifying some of the challenges inherent in non-oil export business.”
Prince Stephen Iragboghie Alao (Yerima Fugar), President, Quality Products International Inc. USA (Pioneer Sole Agent of Nigerian Breweries’ Export Brands, USA): “Bala, one of Nigeria’s best non-oil export business management technocrats has in this book done great service to Nigeria and other developing economies.”
Amb. Henry Olufumi Macauley, Former Minister of Energy of Sierra Leone: “Bala has tried in this book to demystify “export” and clear the path for more businesses to rush into this lucrative venture. He has brought elucidation and clarity in simple but effective language…This book can only add to motivate the entire spectrum of business people to grab this low-hanging fruit, increase economic activity and create wealth.”
Olufunsho Omobitan, PhD, Professor of Economics, Lagos State University: “The promotion of non-oil exports in Nigeria is a burning issue and the timing of this book is very appropriate considering its importance for sustainable economic growth and diversification of the economy. To move Nigeria out of the mono-product economy, the private and public sectors have important roles to play. This book has highlighted the various ways to get involved in export business.”
Chief Ede Dafinone, Chairman, Manufacturers Association of Nigeria Export Promotion Group (MANEG): “This book is an invaluable compendium of useful information about why, how and where to export. It provides the reader with detailed information on export and is a useful reference for even experienced exporters.”
Kayode Toyinbo, MD, Kato Enterprises Ltd. Sole Agent of Nigerian Breweries’ Export Brands, UK: “Export Architecture Road Map is all you need to be successful in export business. It comes highly recommended.”
Barrister E. A. Iginla, Iginla and Company, Barristers and Solicitors: “Very informative and filled with details and excellent examples.”
Frank Aigbogun, Publisher/CEO, BusinessDay Media Limited: “Export Architecture Road Map is an essential read for policy makers in government, and others involved in export in whatever way. It tells the export story brilliantly and insightfully.”
Bisi Sanda, Partner, Head Transaction Advisory, Ernst & Young West Africa: “The book is authoritative and comprehensive and no doubt of immense value to bridge the information gap, theoretical and practical, in the economic space in Nigeria. I commend it to stakeholders in the export trade.”