• Tuesday, April 16, 2024
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Olajumoke Oduwole, founder of KJK Africa: Visionary professional, creating values through KJK Africa

Olajumoke Oduwole, founder of KJK Africa: Visionary professional, creating values through KJK Africa

My name is Olajumoke Oduwole. I am a two-time tech founder of KJK Africa and Alajo App; a Technical Product Developer, a digital transformation expert, and a Forbes 30 under 30 award recipient. KJK Africa is one of Nigeria’s leading Software Design and Development Company, that delivers end-to-end software product engineering services to help corporates, organization and government agencies improve productivity and scale revenue. We build to satisfy a strong market demand and have helped our clients make about $20million in revenue since 2018.

I also co-founded a FinTech Start-Up based on Africa’s Traditional Banking Methods that has existed even before the banks, called Alajo App; an Escrowed Digital Savings Platform for the Under(un)banked in Africa without the need of internet access; helping them save an average of $2.13 daily using GSM Cellular Mobile Phones and Money Agents in their communities.

My experiences are acknowledged and recognized globally, which is a testament to my dedication to excellence and innovation. Earlier this year, I received a special invitation from the lovely and brilliant Dr. Ngozi Okonji Iweala, WTO, Director-general, at the World Government Summit 2023, to speak on Opportunities for Africa arising from Digital Trade at the World Government Summit, the Summit took place in Dubai, UAE. I was also accepted into the Women Founders Africa’s Inaugural Edition of Google for Startups Accelerator in Africa. Recently, Alajo was selected as Top 200 Startups in the world, at the TechCrunch StartUp Battlefield in Sans Francisco and AIm High, Amazon’s AI BootCamp Female Founders across Europe, Middle East and Africa; amongst other prestigious selections.

What would you describe as the greatest passion that has brought you this far in your career?

Wow! It’s been 10 years of boldly taking the step to become an entrepreneur! Creating positive change in the world and improving the quality of life with technology has been my greatest passion! I am inspired by the works of Funke Opeke, Mark Zukerberg and several tech founders who have created technology that has improved standard of living and connectivity.My team and I are focused on building smart technology solutions for Africans and position companies to explore African opportunities.

I strongly believe it is our duty as people sharing life in this world to shape the future. I am committed to building my Technology dreams so that the outcome will shape the future of African businesses. You can partner with me on this journey to influence the economic narrative of Africa for good.

This year theme for International Women’s Day 2024 is Count Her In: Invest in Women. Accelerate Progress, how do you think this can be achieve in the country?

Achieving the theme of “Count Her In: Invest in Women. Accelerate Progress.” for International Women’s Day 2024 requires concerted efforts at multiple levels, including government policies, corporate initiatives, community engagement, and individual actions. Here are some strategies to help achieve this goal:

Economic Empowerment

Education and Skills Development

Healthcare and Reproductive Rights

Ending Gender-Based Violence

Supportive Policies and Legislation

Corporate Leadership and Accountability

Community Engagement and Advocacy

Male Allies and Gender Equality Champions

Media Representation and Cultural Change

Intersectional Approach

What is your view on “Positive Discrimination Initiatives”?

My view on positive discrimination initiatives is that they can be an important tool for promoting diversity, equity, and inclusion in society. By actively seeking to counteract the effects of discrimination and inequality, these initiatives help level the playing field and create opportunities for individuals who may have faced barriers due to factors such as race, gender, disability, or socioeconomic background. However, it’s essential to implement positive discrimination initiatives carefully and thoughtfully to ensure fairness and effectiveness.

How well can you describe the implementation of the affirmative in the country and what other limitations can you ascribe to the seemingly slow progress in the ascendancy of a woman as number one citizen in the country?

The implementation of positive discrimination initiatives in Nigeria is laudable. Private organizations and NGOs funded by government and foreign agencies have been exceptional in the implementation of the women affirmative in Nigeria. These efforts are particularly evident in the I.T industry, as women participation in the sector has grown year on year. However, there is still significant room for growth and improvement. Unlike the work sector, women participation in politics is still low with little sign of improvement. This low participation can be traced to culture, religious, and economic limitations.

I believe it would take years of re-educating the populace along with economic empowerment of women before we can see more women in politics. By investing in women and accelerating progress towards gender equality, Nigeria can unlock the full potential of half of their population, leading to stronger, more prosperous, and more inclusive country for all.

As the Managing Director of KJK Africa can you assess the inclusions of women in different leadership positions in both public and private sector, would you say the women are being marginalized by their male counterparts?

No, I consider the word marginalization an inappropriate description of the perceived imbalance of the ratio of men to women in leadership positions in the private sector. Currently, there is an uptick in the appointment of female MD’s with the qualification and experience to lead private businesses. I believe this trend will continue and we will see more women leading companies at different levels because female education and targeted skill empowerment is being practiced. Having more qualified women in workplaces increases the chances of having women leaders.

Women represent more than half of the Nigerian population. So, it follows a lack of women leaders means half of the country’s population is underrepresented. Beyond the equality argument, women have innate qualities that can help the government create humane laws for the people.

What does KJK Africa represent?

KJK Africa represents faith, expertise, hard work, and family. The name KJK was derived from letters in my sister, my name and late mother’s name. Over the years, KJK Africa has grown into technology powerhouse because of expertise, hard work, and faith.

As a career woman, how do you managed your home, office as well as other social responsibilities and still be able to maintained a successful career?

One phrase, Structure, Systems and Processes. I learnt very early from Mrs.Oby Ezekwesili, that a woman must understand her reality at every season of her life and she must ensure that no reality suffers. Knowing this, helped me effectively structure my life through all seasons as a student, a leader, confidant, guardian, entrepreneur, all seasons. This structure has helped me maintain the life that I love.

At work, I have learnt to work with the best talents, delegate responsibilities, seek assistance, and refuse relationships that do not serve my purpose as an Entrepreneur, Christian, and Human.

I also prioritize my mental health, physical wellbeing, emotional health, and spiritual growth; this focus has helped me improve my skill and delivery as a leader

What advice do you have for the girl child and women in general as we celebrate IWD 2024?

On International Women’s Day and every day, remember that you are strong, capable, and deserving of equality and opportunity. Keep striving for progress, and together, we can build a more equitable and inclusive world for all.