Aliko Dangote currently ranks as the richest man in Africa, and 88th in the world. Regardless of his business growth over the years, Dangote doesn’t slow down. He is currently worth $10 billion dollars and remains the Chairman and CEO of Dangote group since he founded it in 1977 as a small trading outfit. It’s important to note that Dangote’s rise didn’t start overnight. He put in a lot of work and utilized several strategies and tactics to grow his empire. That being said, here are some tactics that today’s entrepreneurs or business-minded people can learn from Aliko Dangote.
- Embrace taking calculated risks: It’s no hidden secret that Nigeria’s economy poses numerous business challenges to entrepreneurs. However, Dangote, 88th-richest person in the world, he doesn’t shy away from taking risks. For one, in 2000, Aliko Dangote acquired a struggling state-owned cement plant and built a world-class cement plant, Obajana. This shows that he knows that he will not impact lives or make money without taking a challenge. On the other hand, there are some budding businessmen and women who won’t invest as small as 15% of their income on a new business venture. More groundbreaking is that he also took up a tasking oil refinery project worth $11.1 billion. The refinery will produce 650,000 barrels per day, and also stamp Nigeria as an exporter of petroleum products in the year 2020.
- Recognize opportunities and trends in business: One quality the richest man in Africa has employed over the years is the ability to spot a fantastic opportunity. At the point where he started his small business as a commodity trader, he sought opportunities to grow and predicted novel business trends. Another great example lies in the time when he started out like a cement trader, purchasing cement from local manufacturers and importers. At one point, the Government discovered that the supply was insufficient to meet local demand. When the Government granted tax reductions for cement importation, he changes to an importer. Subsequently, he became a manufacturer of cement and began producing about 20million tons annually.
- Understanding the importance of branding: Over the years, Aliko Dangote has mastered the art of branding. Generally, the Dangote brand is associated with the excellence of his person. In one interview with the Sun, he mentioned that: ‘’My story is that of a man and a brand Nigerians have come to know, to have and to accept. Nigerians are investing in us because they believe in the name Dangote, apart from believing in us we have a track record which we have actually shown.”
- Systemizing the business and employing smart individuals: Running the Dangote group would be as good as impossible without systemizing it. Now, Aliko Dangote’s company has numerous branches in Nigeria and sub-Saharan Africa. Moreover, Dangote once revealed that he runs his companies by operating them separate entities. Also, his companies have separate management and boards that are linked to a head office. Aliko’s company also employs smart individuals who work to build the company.
- Investing in competitive businesses with comparative advantages: Even in the face of competition, Dangote didn’t doubt the market potential of his firm. Before the emergence of his into the business of cement importation, Nigeria was consuming 10million -15million ton. Lafarge, Dangote’s biggest competitor back then, was producing less than 1million tons domestically. Now, Dangote has plants in the country that produced about 20million tons of cement. His company even exports to Ghana. Moreover, his venture into sugar, salt, and other commodities gave him an edge in a competitive business scene. So, regardless of the fact that he’s a clever businessman, he has shown confidence by recently investing in the oil sector.
There you go! What tactics do you find impressive?