The supply chain management and logistics industries are among Nigeria’s fastest-growing sectors sectors, although they are still evolving in crucial areas.
Recently, however, the cost of doing business in this sector has been significantly impacted by the recent removal of petrol subsidies and foreign exchange market unification.
The fuel subsidy removal, aimed at reducing the fiscal deficit and attracting foreign investment, has caused petrol prices to soar from an average of N162 per litre to around N630 per litre.
This price hike, combined with inflation and currency depreciation, has substantially increased transportation costs for both commuters and businesses.
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As of 2020, Nigeria ranked 131st out of 190 countries in the Ease of Doing Business Index and 110th in the Logistics Performance Index.
The growth in Nigeria’s logistics sector can be attributed to various factors, including improved infrastructure in railways and air transport, international partnerships, manufacturing and export growth, and the rise of e-commerce and logistics applications.
Nevertheless, this growth comes with its set of challenges. The sector grapples with significant infrastructure deficits, obstructive government policies, inadequate road networks, unreliable electricity supply, pervasive corruption, and a complex tax structure.
Local stakeholders, burdened by financial struggles, often pass on these costs to end-users, undermining competitiveness.
In a recent investigation by Nairametrics, logistics companies reacted to these new macroeconomic shocks. For instance, dispatch riders raised their fares by 100%.
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While e-commerce drives much of the logistics sector, the growth of online sales has further expanded opportunities for these companies.
Despite infrastructure gaps, some companies are persevering to provide services for Nigerians. These businesses not only create jobs but also contribute to the economy by enhancing the delivery of goods and services.
In line with Nairametrics‘ tradition, we introduce some of the leaders/founders of prominent logistics companies, fueling growth and empowerment in Nigeria’s expanding economy in 2023.
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Hennie Heymans- CEO of DHL Express Sub Sahara Africa
Hennie Heymans has been the Chief Executive Officer of DHL Express Sub-Saharan Africa since 2015.
- In this role, he has led a team of over 4,000 professionals spanning 51 countries.
- Under his guidance, the organization has successfully managed the delivery of more than 8.2 million time-definite international parcels each year.
- In addition to his regional responsibilities, he has had the honour of serving as an invited member of the DHL Global Management Board.
- Before his tenure at DHL, Heymans was a key member of the pioneering team at MultiChoice, where he introduced digital pay TV to Africa.
DHL, originally founded in 1969 by Adrian Dalsey, Larry Hillblom, and Robert Lynn, started with a vision, unaware of the revolutionary impact it would have on the world of logistics. Today, DHL stands as the world’s premier logistics company, with a workforce of 600,000 individuals operating in over 220 countries and territories. Their daily efforts are dedicated to helping businesses expand into new markets, cross borders seamlessly, and even send heartfelt letters to loved ones.
With a remarkable annual delivery volume of 1,668,000,000 parcels, DHL continues to be an integral part of global logistics and communication in today’s interconnected world.
Tola Odeyemi is the Postmaster General and Chief Executive Officer at the Nigerian Postal Service (NIPOST).
- Her appointment to lead the postal agency happened earlier in October 2023 under the administration of President Bola Tinubu.
- Before her pivotal role at NIPOST, Odeyemi served as a two-time Special Assistant to the former Governor of Lagos State, Akinwumi Ambode, between 2016 to 2019.
- She has vowed to turn NIPOST into a world-class e-commerce hub. “I came to build on the commendable work of my predecessors, my aspirations are not only to solidify NIPOST’s status as a leading Postal Operator.
- As I assume this role, I also want to make NIPOST a world-class e-commerce and logistics hub,” the PMG said.
The EMS (Express Mail Service) is the courier division of the Nigerian Postal Service, tasked with the efficient collection, transportation, and delivery of time-sensitive documents, items, and merchandise, both locally and globally.
It also has EMS parcel international which is a worldwide express delivery service for documents and merchandise (including dutiable goods).
The service provides express clearance for dutiable goods not exceeding 30KG and is available to more than 200 outlets worldwide documents.
The Nigeria Postal Service Department came into being with the establishment of the Nigeria Telecommunications Limited (NITEL) on January 1, 1985.
Chidi Ajaere – Founder GIG Logistics
GIG Logistics, founded by tech entrepreneur Chidi Ajaere, who also serves as CEO of GIG Mobility, operates as a distinct entity with its own assets and unique operations.
- In 2014, GIG Logistics harnessed advanced technology for real-time tracking of ground shipments.
- Expanding globally, the company established an office in Houston, Texas, in 2017, and in 2019, extended its services to Ghana.
- In the same year, GIG Logistics introduced GIGGo, an on-demand delivery app that simplifies item pickups and deliveries for customers, eliminating the need for physical visits to service centres.
Headquartered in Lagos, Nigeria, GIG Logistics (GIGL) is a courier and logistics service provider. Established in 2012, it operates as a subsidiary of the GIG Group, a Nigerian intelligence and technology management company. GIGL boasts a presence in Nigeria, Ghana, and the United States.
GIGL’s comprehensive offerings encompass courier services, mobile, social, and e-commerce logistics, delivery solutions, on-board courier services, imports, packaging, mailroom management, and relocation services. It has a staff strength of 1,001-5,000 people.
Babura Badamasi Auwalu – Red Star Express
Auwalu Badamasi Babura is the Group Managing Director/Chief Executive Officer of Red Star Express Plc, a member of the Nigerian Stock Exchange.
- Auwalu joined Red Star Express in 1994 and has served in various capacities, leading teams in Finance, Internal Control and Processes Management, Credit Management, and Administration.
- He holds a first Degree in Accounting (B.Sc.) from Bayero University Kano, an MBA in Business Administration (MBA) from the Lagos State University, and a Mini MBA from the London School of Business and Finance.
Red Star Express Plc is a Licensee of Federal Express (FedEx) Corporation, the world’s largest delivery solutions provider.
The company has over 150 offices nationwide, with a network reach spanning over 1,500 communities in Nigeria and over 200 countries worldwide.
The logistics company reported a gross income of N13.87 billion for FYE 2023, representing a 10.13% increase compared to the N12.60 billion recorded during the same period of the previous year.
Despite recording a 10% increase in revenue, Red Star recorded a significant increase in profit after tax of 257.49%.
Massimiliano Spalazzi-CEO of Jumia Nigeria
Massimiliano, or Massi, embarked on his Jumia journey in Lagos, Nigeria, back in 2012, joining the marketing team during the platform’s launch.
- Over the years, he has steadily expanded his role within the Jumia Group, overseeing operations in over 10 countries.
- Today, he serves as the CEO of Jumia Nigeria, bringing with him over a decade of e-commerce sales and marketing experience.
- His track record showcases a talent for formulating and implementing effective growth strategies in diverse markets, all while emphasizing business performance, controls, and talent development.
- Massimiliano has a double MSc degree from Bocconi University (Italy) and Fudan University (China) and a bachelor’s degree in law and business administration.
Jumia’s journey commenced in 2012 when co-founders Jeremy Hodara and Sacha Poignonnec, alongside Tunde Kehinde and Raphael Kofi Afaedor, launched the platform.
Initially established in Nigeria, Jumia swiftly expanded its footprint to encompass multiple African nations, from Egypt to South Africa.
The company’s diversification includes the introduction of Jumia Travel, Jumia Food, and Jumia Deals. It directly employs over 1000 staff more than 10,000 independent sales agents and over 350 third-party logistics partners.
Eric C. Emecheta -Chief Executive Officer, MD & Director, Trans-Nationwide Express PLC
Eric Chidi Emecheta as Managing Director of Trans Nationwide. He holds a bachelor’s degree in arts, a Master of Science (M.SC.) in mass Communication and a Master of Business Administration in marketing.
- He is an Associate member of the Institute of Brand Management of Nigeria (IBMN) and a Member of the National Institute of Marketing of Nigeria (NIMN).
- He has over 15 years of work experience in Courier & Logistics as well as other companies in Nigeria where he held several Managerial positions. He is currently the General Manager, Marketing & Operations at Package Plus Express Limited.
Trans-Nationwide Express Plc (TRANEX) is a prominent logistics company offering domestic and international express delivery, haulage, freight, and related transportation and storage services.
Established as TNT Skypak Nigeria Limited in 1984, it transitioned to Trans-Nationwide Express Plc in 1992. The company, listed on the Nigeria Stock Exchange, holds the distinction of being one of the two logistic companies in Nigeria listed on the exchange.
Solomon Daramola -Courier Plus
At present, Solomon assumes the role of Managing Director and CEO at CourierPlus Service Limited.
- He is a seasoned professional boasting an impressive track record of over two decades in various domains including Management, Corporate Governance, Internal Control, Taxation, Treasury Management, Product Development and Management, and Strategic Process Development.
- His extensive experience cuts across diverse sectors and industries such as Manufacturing, Agro-Allied, Construction, Agriculture, and Services.
- Solomon has received international training at the London Corporate Training Institute in the United Kingdom and holds the prestigious title of being an alumnus of the Pan Africa University, Lagos Business School, where he completed the Senior Management Program.
CourierPlus is a homegrown Nigerian logistics and distribution services company, founded in 2009 and later acquired in 2012 by Superflux Group of companies.
According to information on their website, they are the fourth largest courier company with a staff strength of over 300.
Frank Nneji –CEO ABC Transport
Founder of ABC Transport Plc, Frank Nneji is a businessperson who has been at the head of 5 different companies.
- He occupies the position of Chairman for Rapido Ventures Ltd., Chairman of Transit Support Services Ltd., Chief Executive Officer, MD & Director at ABC Transport Plc, and Chairman of ABC Express Courier Ltd.
ABC Transport was established on April 5, 1993, and is known for being a revolutionary in the transportation by coach, or luxury bus, sector in Nigeria.
So far it has suffered a substantial decline in revenues, plummeting by over 30% in the past four years.
The company’s coach division has been consistently reporting losses since 2015, and its contribution to overall revenue has dwindled from 13% in 2019 to a meagre 8% in 2022.
Adetayo Bamiduro -Max.ng
Adetayo Bamiduro is the Co-founder and CEO of MAX.NG in Lagos, Nigeria.
- MAX.ng is a pioneering mobility company focused on sub-Saharan Africa, building mobility, financial services, and EV infrastructure for Africa’s $100B transportation industry.
- MAX recently closed a $7.5m fundraising round backed by Yamaha, Mastercard, Novastar Ventures, and Breakthrough Ventures, representing the largest fundraiser by a mobility company in sub-Saharan Africa.
- Previously, Tayo worked as a software engineer and management consultant at PwC, Dalberg, and Shell-operated Natural Gas Company in Nigeria.
He has been awarded the Alibaba eFounders Fellowship, MIT Legatum Fellowships, and the World Economic Forum’s Inclusive Growth Award. Tayo holds an MBA from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology and London Business School.
Samuel Maduka Onyishi -Peace Mass Transit
Samuel Maduka Onyishi is the Founder, Chairman, and Owner of Peace Mass Transit. He attended Groupe Institut Africain de Management 2.
- Peace Mass Transit PMT has been a Trusted Name in Transportation for 20 Years.
- PMT provides transportation services for intercity/interstate travellers in Nigeria.
PMT customers can enjoy air-conditioned vehicles and light entertainment. Peace Mass Transit Ltd offers you the unique service to hire a bus that will take you anywhere in Nigeria, following your desired journey plan, schedule, and duration at a very affordable price.
PMT also provides haulage services for businesses and individuals looking to transport large goods and services or materials within and around Nigerian cities.
Prince Nnamdi Ekeh-Konga Logistics
Nnamdi Ekeh is the Co-CEO of Konga Online Shopping limted. He first founded Yudala, Africa’s pioneering composite e-commerce company, employing over 250 staff and achieving instant success in 2014.
With a wealth of experience in business development, strategic planning, and operations across various industries, Prince Ekeh is a global citizen, holding a degree in Economics, Politics, and Entrepreneurship from the University of Lancaster.
- Ekeh’s creative digital prowess led to the strategic acquisition of Konga Group by Zinox Technologies in 2018 and the successful merger of Yudala and Konga, creating one of Africa’s largest e-commerce platforms.
- Established in 2012, Konga initially operated as an online retailer exclusively catering to Lagos, focusing on products within the Baby, Beauty, and Personal Care categories.
- By December 2012, Konga expanded its reach to serve the entirety of Nigeria.
- Over 2012 and 2013, the platform gradually broadened its merchandise categories, a move that may have been influenced by the emergence of its primary competitor, Jumia, backed by Rocket Internet and launched around the same period.
In early 2013, Konga secured a significant boost with a $10 million Series A funding round from Investment AB Kinnevik and Naspers.
In the second quarter of the same year, Konga introduced ‘Konga Mall,’ a beta testing phase that opened its platform to third-party retailers. This marked a shift away from a purely first-party online retail model.
Later in 2013, Konga solidified its presence with a substantial $25 million Series B round, once again from previous investors Investment AB Kinnevik and Naspers.
Notably, this funding round was the largest ever raised by a single African startup at the time.
To make its online integration very effective, Konga introduced Konga Express which focuses on selling its products to reach the buyer with every available means.
Customers can have their ordered products delivered to them within 1–3 days. Konga Express fulfils the orders that are made daily with online tracking.
Romain Poirot-Lellig, born in 1978, is a multifaceted French entrepreneur, author, policy advisor, and former diplomat with a rich and diverse background.
- Currently, he serves as the Founder and CEO of Africa Delivery Technologies, the company behind the French/Nigerian mobility platform known as Kwik Delivery.
- With a focus on West Africa, Romain’s career encompasses experience in venture capital fundraising, diplomacy, policy advisory, and authorship, particularly in international affairs, public affairs, and business development within Europe and Sub-Saharan Africa.
- Furthermore, he has contributed to academia, teaching international relations at Sciences Po Paris from 2010 to 2018.
In 2022 Kwik raised $2 million in Series A funding.
The financing round was led by XBTO Ventures, a crypto finance company with a VC arm that invests in digital assets, among other types of startups. New and existing investors such as Humla Ventures, Nabuboto, Ubisoft CEO Yves Guillemot, and Pulse Africa founder Leonard Stiegeler participated.
Emotu Balogun & Olusegun Afolahan -Founders Sandbox
Emotu Balogun is the Co-founder & CEO at Sendbox.
- Previously co-founded and ran a fashion marketplace for Nigerian merchants.
- With over 10 years in software & product development. He founded the company alongside Olusegun Afolahan.
- It raised $1.8 million in seed funding around this time in 2021.
Sandbox helps small e-commerce merchants who sell directly to customers through their online channels or social media platforms with fulfilment.
According to Sandbox, it handles local and international fulfilment for over 7,500 merchants within Nigeria. It was founded in 2016. Adelana
Olamilekan-MD/CEO ZENITH CAREX INT’L
Dr Adelana Olamilekan is the Managing Director/CEO of Zenith Carex International, a logistics and clearing company.
- He has many years of cognate experience in Freight forwarding Customs clearance, haulage, and related logistics services.
- Zenith Carex International offers customs clearance services in both Sea and Air in all the seaports and airports in Nigeria.
Zenith Carex was incorporated on 1st November 2002 under the 1968 Companies Acts of the Federal Republic of Nigeria under registration RC 465 705.
The logistics company currently has 200 office locations, 10,000 vehicles, and trucks, and 20,000 staff strength.
Oscar Pierre-CEO/Co-founder of Glovo
Glovo, a multi-category app hailing from Spain, was established in 2014 and was officially launched in 2015 by Oscar Pierre and Sacha Michaud after securing initial funding.
Over the years, the company has impressively engaged in seven rounds of funding, amassing a total of $1.0 billion in investments.
In mid-2022, Glovo became a part of the Delivery Hero Group, a publicly traded German company, further expanding its reach and influence.
As of 2021, Glovo’s platform is operational in 25 countries and spans across more than 1,500 cities. The app enjoys monthly usage by an extensive network, with over 170,000 active partners and 61,000 active couriers, demonstrating its widespread presence and utility.
Obi Ozor- CEO of Kobo 360
Obi Ozor is the CEO and co-founder of Kobo360, a digital logistics platform that swiftly emerged as one of Africa’s fastest-growing platforms in its niche.
He is spearheading the development of the Global Logistics Operating System (G-LOS), a blockchain-enabled platform designed to facilitate and enhance trade across the African continent, further solidifying Kobo360’s position as an industry innovator.
In recognition of his outstanding contributions, Obi Ozor received prestigious accolades in 2019, being named both Innovator of the Year and Young Business Leader of the Year at the CNBC All Africa Business Leaders Awards.
Additionally, in 2020, alongside his Co-Founder, Ife Oyedele II, he earned a spot within Endeavor’s global network of high-impact entrepreneurs.
Kobo360, an African tech-driven digital logistics platform headquartered in Lagos, plays a pivotal role in connecting cargo owners with truck owners.
The company extends its physical presence across six African nations, including Nigeria, Ghana, Kenya, Burkina Faso, and Ivory Coast.
- Kobo360 predominantly serves a clientele comprising large multinational corporations and manufacturing and production companies. Its platform functions as a crucial intermediary, pairing cargo owners with truck owners to address and eliminate delays in timely goods deliveries.
- In 2019, Kobo360 reached a significant milestone when it achieved product-market fit. This accomplishment paved the way for the company’s rapid expansion, primarily fueled by a substantial $30 million investment infusion comprising both equity and debt from notable investors such as Goldman Sachs, the International Finance Corporation, TLcom Capital, and others.
Babafemi Aluko -CEO / Co-founder Chowdeck
Babafemi Aluko is the co-founder and CEO of Chowdeck, a food delivery service company. He was a former Principal Engineer at Paystack, an African payments company acquired by Stripe in 2020.
- When he started at Paystack in 2017 (as the fifth engineer and the first Core Payments Engineer), he was responsible for building the core payment infrastructure for multiple payment methods.
- As a Principal Engineer, he was in charge of designing multiple core systems like the circuit breaker for routing over 100k transactions daily.
- Chowdeck is a Y Combinator-backed company, and reportedly crossed N1 billion ($1.2 million) in monthly gross merchandise value (GMV). It marks a 10x growth spurt for a company that reportedly crossed ₦100 million monthly GMV ten months ago.
- According to the founder it recorded 60,000 active users in October, up from 7,000 in January.