The first Edition of the CFA’s Startups Hangout for 2018 was held on May 5, 2018 at GRA, Ikeja. The theme of the Hangout was: Building The Right Relationships and Partnerships.

CFA’s Startups Hangout, is a forum where Start-ups meet up with successful and experienced entrepreneurs, with a view to learn from them, skills to help them grow their businesses, pitfalls to to avoid in the course of running their businesses, by tapping through the experiences of these successful entrepreneurs, as well as network and synergize with one another.

The May 2018 Edition featured three successful entrepreneurs, who spoke to the attendee Startups. They are Muhammad Rudman, CEO, Internet Exchange Point of Nigeria, IXPN, Ojikutu Adeniyi, President, CAPDAN and CEO of Pacific Network Solutions Limited and Dr. Nkiru Balonwu, Managing Partner, RDF Strategies.

First to speak was Muhammad Rudman, who stated that partnership or collaboration, is the coming together of individuals, families or businesses, with a view to achieving certain results. “There has to be a reason for collaborating, to achieve a common goal”, he stated. He gave a vivid example of collaboration, by stating that the internet, as we have it today, is a combination of the efforts of experts from Stanford University, UCLA and many other experts.

He stated that, before going into partnership, you need to set your goals right and build trust with your partner.

Next to speak, was Ojikutu Adeniyi. He also emphasised the need for trust to exist, when forming a partnership, stating that, challenges will come, but you have to find a way around those challenges. “Challenges are constant, but how constantly you solve those challenges, will determine how far the partnership will go”, he stressed. He also stated that, for the partnership to work effectively, the partners must be faithful to each other.

Ojikutu emphasised that, before going into a partnership, you need to have a roadmap and know what you will gain from in it and  this must be connected to your vision and mission.

In her presentation, Nkiru Balonwu stated that, the main reason for going into a partnership is that, no one has the answers to everything, so, you need to partner with those who know about that aspect of the business you want to engage in and collaborate. She frowned at the idea of wanting to be the sole CEO or Founder at all cost, when your business can be better managed by going into a partnership.

Nkiru, however, gave a caveat that, for the partnership to work, the partners need to have the same values, as well as bring something of value to the table. She also stressed the need for trust to exist among the partners for it to work effectively.

The attendee Startups used the opportunity of the question and answer session, to asked thought provoking questions from the guest speakers on the theme and got priceless answers.

After the guest speakers presentation and the question and answer session, the Hangout went into a networking session, where the attendee Startups interacted with one another, as well as with the guest speakers, to know each other better and see where they can collaborate and partner.


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