By Omodele Adigun, Deputy Business Editor
To Asiwaju Solomon Kayode Onafowokan, the Chairman, Coleman Wire and Cables as well as many other business outfits, transparency is the soul and spirit of business. According to him, 99 per cent of his guiding principle is transparency, because “at the end of the day, it is always better for a volume-driven business with little profit, but you operate more on volume. You try and create more opportunities for your distributors to also have something before the retailers. So, that is my philosophy and I think it works well.”
Little wonder that the business he planted like a mustard seed in 1998 has today grown, like an oak tree, to be the largest indigenous wire manufacturing-company in West Africa. Presently, the Coleman Wire and Cables alone boasts of more than 2,000 workers in its payroll, not to talk of other companies where Asiwaju Onafowokan holds sway as the chairman. These companies include Artee Industries Ltd. (owners of park ‘n’ shop and manufacturers of Cascade water beverages and milk); Millennium International Ltd (manufacturers of modern furniture); Chellarams Plc (manufacturers/assemblers of portable delivery vehicles, motorcycles and distributive trade, including franchise for KFC kitchens); Chairman, Yodesons Group (distributive trade, forwarding and clearing agents, hotel & tourism) and Eskay Petroleum Co. Ltd. (petroleum marketing & manufacturer of lubricants).
Others are Om Ltd (manufacturers of water, oil services & conduit pipes); Danman Plastics (manufacturer of water and conduit pipes); Techno-agric Industry & Commercial Ltd. (for large scale farming & husbandry); RMB Properties Ltd. (industrial/ commercial/ residential estate developers) and Sagamu Microfinance Bank Ltd, Ogun State.