It is one thing to start a business; it is another thing to grow a business. For me, the exciting part about growing a business is the ups ‘n’ downs. There are periods when the world seems like a great place, and there comes that phase of your business journey when you just want to hide in a hole. That happens when your business growth stalls. I have been...
When it comes to building a product, startup founders sometimes seem to dwell on the illusion that an amazing product is equal to great sales. You may have thought so at some point then realized it’s not, and if you are yet to make the discovery, then this will be both an eye-opening for you and a way out. There are a few facts that you need to walk around...
In 1918, I lived at home with my parents Eli and Nora Brantley and five of my siblings in Blackford, Kentucky. One day, one of the doctors from Blackford came by and stopped and asked, “Eli, how is your family doing?” Dad said, “All are doing very well.” The doctor replied, “Keep doing what you are doing, for where I′m going, they are going to lose...
e-Commerce startups fail at an alarming rate. I think in the last decade I know about 15 e-commerce startups that have gone burst. Most didn’t survive two years, and the rest quit after four gruelling years. Even our two darlings Jumia and Konga are not doing too well. Konga was sold at a loss, and Jumia group is using revenue from other subsidiaries to cover up what everyone knows...
Connecting Artisans to Customers, is definitely the idea I get pitched the most. Seriously, it is not even a contest. Whenever a prospective startup founder wants to have a session with me, two times out of five, it is about connecting artisans to customers or some variation of it, for example connecting mechanics to customers. The idea is a typical marketplace play, where you build a technology platform, which acts...
A technology business is still just a business, and operates under the same rules as every other businesses. Entrepreneurs sometime think having their startup driven by technology somehow sprinkles it with some magical potential for scale.  I may have to apologise for this reality check; Money scales a business. What technology does, is to provide a much cheaper infrastructure for scale. Technology is really just infrastructure. Let me give you an...
This is one question where you instinctively know the answer; but when you are asked, you still manage to get confused. Is a startup a business? Is a startup a small business? Is a startup a new business? Is a startup technology business? Or a combination of all of the above — a new small technology business? Simple answer; a startup is a business that is still trying to see...
What should I use to build my startup? What programming language is best? What tech stack is best? (By the way, if you are a software developer, you could stop reading, or you read from the perspective of your non-technical cofounder) There isn’t usually a straight answer to a technology question. One way to know an experienced tech practitioner, is if his answer to everything is “it depends”. Because, it really...
What is a two-sided market? It is one in which you act as the intermediary between 2 distinct groups who must come together, that is, neither can exist alone. For example, Uber is the intermediary between Drivers and Riders. Most Ecommerce platforms are two-sided, they connect merchants to buyers. Well, there is something you should know; they are notoriously hard to pull off.  First challenge, who do you bring to the...

Mayowa Okegbenle

The Innovators' Friend

Mayowa is a friend to Innovators. He started his first tech company in 2007, along with his friend Shola. Together, they embarked on a 8 year journey which saw them sell enterprise software in over 22 countries, feature in international publications, and have their software translated to 7 languages.

Since that experience, Mayowa has worked with several startups, advising them on technology innovation and entrepreneurship. In 2018, Mayowa attended a 3 months Technology Entrepreneurship masterclass in London's Accelerator Academy, sponsored by the City of London. At the Academy, he collaborated with other successful entrepreneurs from different continents.

Mayowa isn't just your everyday strategist, he has been through the journey and he gives practical advise on how startups should identify their entry product and attain market fit.

Mayowa holds an Executive Master of Business Administration (EMBA) from the Lagos Business School. He also has certifications in Behavioural finance from Saïd Business School, University of Oxford; and Economic Analysis of High-Tech Industries from Yale School of Management.

Mayowa is married with a daughter, whom he considers his most valuable startup.

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