By Moses Nosike
Following its outstanding results last year, the Lagos Leather Fair, first of its kind is gearing up for its second edition coming up in May 5 and 6, 2018, Lagos.
The fair which was created to gather stakeholders along the leather value chain will also identify challenges facing the industry with the hope of proffering sustainable solutions and bring the necessary innovative to the industry for economic growth and development.
The leather fair which was a private initiative of Femi Olayebi of FemiHandbags, seeks to promote a networking of leather designer operators to showcase operators wares and eventually provide the much-needed training for artisans that would essentially improve the general quality of leather finished products.
During the first edition last year, over 2,500 people gathered to learn from the various master classes, panel discussions and workshops. Participants also discovered Made-in-Nigeria leather products from over 50 leather exhibitors at the fair. The fair attracted both local and international speakers such as Waheed Olagunju, SegunAwolowo, Muni Shonibare, Reni Folawiyo, Tokunbo Onagoruwa, Zainab Ashadu, Robert Gussoni, Nelly Wandji, among others.
According to the Minister of Science and Technology, Dr. OgbonnayaOnu, who spoke at the validation workshop on National Leather and Leather Products Policy held in Sokoto in January 2018, said that the leather industry is the nation’s next gold mine and holds the key to industrial growth, jobs and wealth creation.
The founder, Femi Olayebi, said that last year’s event was a real eye-opener for everyone. This year, we intend to explore the myriad possibilities before us and do what we can with what we have to own that space. The world is looking at Africa for answers and the time has come to position ourselves for real growth.
He said: “Lagos Leather Fair is a step in the right direction, bringing all the major players including leather designers, raw material producers, suppliers of machinery and equipment, manufacturers of finished goods, retailers and key government players to collectively forge a new path and explore ways to re-invent the leather industry.