This great advice was given by the head, Enterprise Marketing, Etisalat Nigeria, Bidemi Ladipo, while speaking in Lagos, at the Market Access initiative, organised by Etisalat Nigeria, in partnership with the Enterprise Development Centre of the Pan Atlantic University.
He said being innovative will help startup and grow small businesses sustainably in spite of environmental challenges that every business faces
"When you are starting a small business, you have to be unique and innovative. Don’t copy other people’s business ideas; if your idea is based on an existing one, then you have to go the extra mile by adding something unique," he emphaised.
He added that, "We are proud to be associated with small and growing businesses in Nigeria because we share a similar story. When we came to Nigeria, the market had been fully taken by existing operators.
Though we came into the market as a small player, today out story is different; we have over 23 million subscribers and we are on our way to becoming the number one player in the industry. This tells us that every small business has a potential to grow into a big corporation, which is why we associate with small businesses."
Wale Anifowose, general manager, Programs and Partnership at Enterprise Development Centre, Pan-Atlantic University, Lagos, highlighted that Market Access Nigeria is a platform that brings together Small and Medium Scale Enterprises (SMEs) and large companies to network, start relationships and create opportunities to 'buy' the goods and services of the SMEs. He commended Etisalat for being at the forefront of promoting entrepreneurship through its various initiatives such as the Market Access and the EasyBusiness Millionaires Hunt among others.
The Market Access platform has seen tremendous success since its inception in 2011. Market Access has aided Small and Medium Scale Enterprises (SMEs) in networking and developing productive relationships with larger organisations. Last year, the platform toured the country to regions including Lagos, Abuja and Port Harcourt with a combined total audience of over 2,000 people for the year. This year, the platform has toured Port Harcourt and Abuja.