Mr. Kola Osinowo is the Care Manager, Nokia West Africa. In this interview with Moses Nosike of Saturday Vanguard Business, he speaks on the secret of the business expansion in Nigeria, and the need for partnership with the government agencies to fight the menace ofÂ fake devices in the industry in orderÂ to ensure business growth.
What informed the interest of Nokia in Nigeria for business?
First and foremost, Nigeria attracts everyone,Â not just Nigerians . And for us as a business, Nigeria is the biggest black nation in Africa. One in every five black persons is a Nigerian and thatâ€™s why Nokia canâ€™t ignore this market.
No business in the world can ignore the drive in this market. Nigerians are very resourceful, hardworking and intelligent. At the same time, they also have wants and needs and Nokia is there to ensure they keep connected to what matters to them.
How do you see the business of mobile phone in Nigeria?
The business is good and more to that, it has increased in Nigeria. And it will continue to increase significantly, and Nokia is there on the long term basis as well.
Nokia is expanding its customer care centres, what is your take on this?
Itâ€™s so because our services are unique. More to that is, our business vision focuses on our customers. More importantly, we see things through the eyes of the customers and thatâ€™s why we canâ€™t ignore the customer. However, itâ€™s not just selling the device or also supporting the consumer, but for us, itâ€™s a total experience.
How can you compare mobile phone business in Nigeria and other places?
Well, I think Nigeria is an emerging market, and it will continue to grow and we believe strongly in that. Iâ€™m anÂ IT fan and I know where other countries like India, Singapore and Malaysia started.
Now they are beating US and other European countries today, and I know Nigeria is a sleeping tiger, we will gather someday. It will be soon.
SinceÂ the global economic meltdown that saw the closure of big firms in the world of business, it has not been easy for businesses, do you encounter challenges in your operation?
Nokia is like any other business in Nigeria and in the world of business, we face a lot of challenges. Infra structural, resources challenges are all there.Â But the most important thing in any business is the ability to adapt to your local environment. Even at that, business is still striving. Nigerians are resilience people, and Nokia is going to come into that market, we also have to be resilience as well.
Whatâ€™s Nokia doing to protect its product from being faked?
We will continue to partner with government and local authorities to ensure that itâ€™s curbed. We will not take laws into our hands, weâ€™ve to go through the law enforcement agencies, because weâ€™ve know there areÂ fake devises, apart from the fact that itâ€™s embarrassing to consumers, it also losses experience because it doesnâ€™t give them full value for the money they have paid. Weâ€™re working and will continue to work. On our own part, weâ€™re creating a lot of awareness in the media and in terms of propagating our warrantee awareness.
But we continue to work with the agencies, and we advise that the government agencies come to partner with us; the Customs, Standard Organisation of Nigeria (SON),Â NIS , SONCAP andÂ NCC, we invite them to partner with us to fight this monster, because most of these fake devises are health hazzards as well, because some of the them have noises that are not properly filtered. So if government is willing to support us, weâ€™re willing to work with them.