“I’m Bullish on Nigerian Small Businesses”- Charles Ike Okwuobi, CEO, GoGagga
The global recession of 2008 has changed the face of business. In North America, banks now actively deploy out-of-the-box Aggregators as solutions to Small Business Wealth Management & Personal Financial Planning.
The growth of the Nigerian mobile market, with over 90 million subscribers, as well as the evolution of the Nigerian economy around small businesses - with at least one family member running a small business or being self-employed, has led to innovation in Mobile Technology Aggregator solutions to empower small businesses and facilitate their growth.
GoGagga Corp of Canada, who design technology systems & platforms for Tier-1 banks in North America complementing their efforts to achieve Regulatory Compliance in areas of Securities Regulation, Taxation, Anti-Money Laundering and other critical banking infrastructure, has been at the heart of this cutting-edge technology. In an interview, its CEO, Charles Ike Okwuobi, explained its plans to debut the GoGagga Aggregator for small businesses in Africa on the back of a GoGagga Technology Summit in Lagos.
“The GoGagga Aggregator,” he said, “is a Wealth Manager that enables business owners receive on their mobile phones, email alerts of transactions posted by operational staff during the running of the business. Traders, manufacturers or entrepreneurs, for instance, can set themselves up to receive alerts as their products are sold. Alerts come complete with details of the transaction as to product, quantity, amounts received, or even the client-buying, product-stock depleted or discounts given. Business owners now have total oversight of the business even when away from the business premises.”
The CEO also explained that while alerts received by the business for any transaction can be discussed amongst its stakeholders on their GoGagga Chat Platform on any mobile phone - blackberry, iphone, ipad, Android, J2ME and Java phones, the system also transforms the records of postings received for any period of time into a variety of reports that “categorize, consolidate and aggregate the transaction; empowering stakeholders with critical reports to enable them to analyze, plan and grow the business.”
On its customization for Nigerian businesses, Okwuobi shed further light, “The business doesn’t need to worry about lack of electricity or high air-time fees as they can work offline and synchronize at any time in a process that takes seconds”
He also disclosed that GoGagga had been on ground in Nigeria for about six months testing the product directly with business owners in Lagos while preparing for the GoGagga Technology Summit. He shared his findings on the reviews GoGagga received from Nigerian businesses.
With respect to feedback on its importance and impact to businesses, he said “All 100% of the small business owners interviewed in Lagos, were excited about the product. They overwhelmingly agreed that the GoGagga Aggregator & Wealth Manager would be extremely important and impactful to their businesses.”
As to its Ease of Use, he explained that while 98% of respondents found the aggregator easy to use, a reasonable percent preferred assistance with the set-up. The CEO disclosed that GoGagga had gone into an alliance partnership with NIPOST for the distribution of its product within Lagos. The set-up, he said, will be supported by a team of independent tech-support agents the company was currently hiring through its offices in Opebi, Lagos. He also disclosed that the company looks forward to securing banks to offer the Business version to their Small Business Clients, and the Financial Planner version to their Personal Banking clients.
“The lack of a solution to enable small business owners remotely manage their businesses while away has arguably been one of the most important impediments to their growth in Africa” he explained while talking about the possibilities of remote management that the GoGagga Aggregator & Wealth Manager presents, “All 100% of respondents enthusiastically agreed it would strongly impact not only their business growth, but also their personal wellbeing, as they would be able to constantly track and analyze the feedback coming from their different product lines or locations, as transactions occur, irrespective of whether the business owner was locally present or even out of the country. GoGagga leads to the growth of the business, its employer and employees, because a rising tide lifts all boats”
We asked him about the types of businesses that can use GoGagga. “Any business can use GoGagga. Whether it is a one-shop business with salespeople retailing hair products clothes or shoes, or a legal practice, or a mechanic workshop with a team of apprentices, or a pharmacy, or a trader retailing or wholesaling its products from one or more locations, or a manufacturer like a small bakery, the GoGagga Aggregator & Wealth Manager will help their businesses grow. It can also be used by Associations, Universities, or even Government departments who want to micro-manage their current expenditure and future budgets.”
With all these interesting features, we asked whether Nigerian businesses were ready to pay for the use of software. “Absolutely! After demonstrating the product, we found that while most business owners were comfortable paying a fair price per user, companies with multiple locations or larger product lines like Pharmacies and Supermarkets, didn’t find cost to be an issue, but had specific customized requests, like the ability to print receipts and categorize their multiple product lines - all of which we have implemented in this version of GoGagga. After the demonstration, many small businesses couldn’t wait for us to sign them up. They insisted on being subscribed directly from our North American servers. This tells me that Nigeria is ready for business. I am bullish on Nigerian Small Businesses and their ability to grow and compete in the global market,” he professed.
Watch the short promo videos below: