Hi, good people of Nigeria, welcome to the first edition of the Rebrand Nigeria Ambassador Series this week.
We are glad to present to you, Mr Kola Masha, the Founder and CEO of Babban Gonna Farm Limited and Doreo Partners.
Born of an American mother and a Nigerian father, Kola has been on the National stage since age 11, when he hosted a weekly television show popularly called the “Life with Kola”.
Kola holds a Masters degree in Engineering from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, Boston and an MBA from the Harvard Business School.
On his return to Nigeria, he worked with Notore Group, a Nigerian leading agricultural conglomerate where he rose to the role of a CEO to one of the group’s subsidiaries.
Leveraging on his experiences in Nortore Group to address youth unemployment in Nigeria, Kola applied for Eisenhower Fellowship where he studied successful American Farmers Cooperatives. On his return, Babban Gona, a social enterprise with a mission to empower Nigerian youths while investing in agriculture was birthed.
Babban Gona serves as a network of small holder farmers in Nigeria through a cooperative franchise model focused on maize cultivation. The enterprise provides end to end services which range from training in sustainable farming, soil analysis, crop insurance, marketing, distribution of products, access to credit, fertilizer and seeds for farmers who are members of the cooperative.
By charging a small margin on the products and services it provides, this social enterprise has successfully improved the lives of thousands of small holder farmers and remain financially stable with a team of about 50 field staff who visit farms, monitor crops and provide technical support to farmers in the cooperative.
This enterprise is Nigeria’s major maize producer which sells its products mainly to Nestle and other large scale poultry farms. In 2017, Kola won the 2017 Skoll Awards where he received a sum of one million dollars to invest in his enterprise.
By providing a combination of financial and non-financial services to over 16,000 small holders farmers in Northern Nigeria, the award winning social entrepreneur is harnessing the power of agriculture to create jobs for youth and improve their livelihoods.
We appreciate Kola for his giant strides in improving food security and creating jobs for millions of Nigerians. As you can see from the above, Nigerian youths are hardworking, resilient and enterprising!
At the Ugwumba Leadership Center, we support young entrepreneurs and innovators through our annual Ugwumba Enterprise Challenge!
Please, do not forget that this campaign is powered by the Ugwumba Center for Leadership Development in Africa.
God bless Nigeria!!