Last updated on July 14th, 2022 at 10:46 pm
Oba Otudeko is a renowned investor and one of the richest people in Nigeria and the founder and chairman of Honeywell Group, Pivot Engineering Co. Ltd.
His business operations spread across flour milling, oil and gas, real estate and marine transportation.
Who is Oba Otudeko?
Full name: Ayoola Oba Otudeko
Date of Birth: August 18, 1943
Birth Place: Ibadan, Oyo State
Home State: Oyo state
Marital Status: Married
Wife: Adebisi Aderonke Otudeko
Investment interest: manufacturing, banking, telecommunication, real estate, stocks and equities
Otudeko was born to a royal family making him an Omoba which translate as “Son of a King” which made it understandable why Oba is included in his name.
The accomplished businessman was christened Ayoola Oba Otudeko and a native of Oyo State in the southwest region of Nigeria.
He is well educated beginning his educational journey at St. John’s School in Ogun State where he completed his basic studies. From there, he attended Olivet Baptist High School in his home state, Oyo.
Despite being a prince, he was not given preferential treatments which caused him to study hard and be dedicated.
He developed an interest in business and this motivated the self-made billionaire to take up commercial studies. To further his studies, he attended Leeds College of Commerce Leeds, Yorkshire, the United Kingdom graduating with a bachelor degree in Accountancy.
Moving to the United Kingdom was not all bread and butter for Otudeko, he had to work hard with his eyes fixed on the trophy, that is graduating among the best students.
For Otudeko to become a professional Chartered Banker, Chartered Accountant and a Chartered Corporate Secretary he had to further his studies by attending executive management training programs at the International Institute for Management Development (IMD), Lausanne in Switzerland, Harvard Business School, USA and then Arthur D. Little School of Management, USA.
Otudeko’s certificate was put to use when he began practising his profession as a clerk in the nonoperational Co-operative Bank in Ibadan.
He remained with the bank and with time through hard work and dedication, the professional banker gained promotion rising to the level of General Manager and acting Chief Executive Officer of the bank.
This shows his resiliency and determination to rise to the top. He worked in the banking industry for good 23 years and eventually resigned in 1983 after rendering outstanding service in the corporate arena.
His achievement with his former bank attracted the federal government of Nigeria to seek his services and was appointed Director to the Board of the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN).
Exploit in Business World
Retirement for Otudeko was not the end of making ends meet as the successful banker ventured to become an entrepreneur beginning with the establishment of Honeywell Enterprises in 1972.
The company is a trading enterprise that focuses on importing and marketing across different states in Nigeria especially between the North and south.
Creating a business requires patience, diligence and commitment to grow and establish. Fortunately, under the leadership of Otudeko, Honeywell enterprise expand its operation and over time evolved into Honeywell Group having many subsidiaries in the different economic sectors.
With the expansion into Honeywell Group, the company diversified into other business aspects such as foods and agro-allied, real estate, infrastructure, energy and services.
Soon afterwards, Otudeko business empire operates under the following subsidiaries
- Honeywell Flour Mills Plc.
- HOGL Energy Limited,
- Pivot Engineering Company Limited,
- Uraga Real Estate,
- Anchorage Leisures
- Pavilion Technology Limited
- Broadview Engineering,
- Hudson Power Limited,
- Uraga Power Solutions Limited
- Honeywell Energy Resources International Limited.
The smart businessman and investor held several high positions in government and private parastatal throughout his career.
The billionaire businessman was elected President of the Nigeria Stock Exchange now the Nigerian Exchange Group becoming the 16th president of the NSE.
Becoming a Chartered Banker and Chartered Accountant comes with many incentives. With such high-end qualifications, Otudeko was nominated Chairman of FBN Holdings Plc and also on the Board of First Bank of Nigeria Plc. He held the position for 12 years and eventually retired from the position in 2010.
Other government parastatals where he served as chairman are the National Maritime Authority, Nigerian- South African Chamber of Commerce.
As earlier mentioned, his leadership position held by this dynamic businessman is not limited to government positions alone as he occupied important positions in several private organizations operating in real estate, brewing companies and international trade and finance.
These include Guinness Nigeria Plc, British American Tobacco Ltd, Eco bank Transnational Incorporated, Delmar Overseas Ltd, Khali & Dibbo Ltd, Airtel Nigeria Ltd, Fan Milk of Nigeria Plc, Digital Africa Conference Exhibition, and Business Support Group.
Other organizations where he served as council members include Manufacturers’ Association of Nigeria, Nigerian Banks Employers’ Association and West African Banks’ Association.
Not forgetting that he was a member of the Presidential Advisory Council on Nigeria Industrial Revolution Plan.
Otudeko is a passionate man who has a heart for others. He is a seasoned philanthropist who cares about others and has gone the extra mile to spend a portion of his wealth to help them.
To show that he is a man who has others at heart, in 2003, he established Oba Otudeko Foundation which focuses on bringing sustainable development in Nigeria and Africa at large.
The foundation’s objective is achieved through people empowerment, capacity and institutions building.
Controversies Surrounding Otudeko
Challenges are part of life and they can come at any stage. Both great and small alike have their fair share of life’s challenges which can come in any form.
Otudeko is not immune to this fact as he was summoned to court by the Federal High Court in Ikoyi, Lagos in 2018.
The self-made billionaire was summoned to testify in an N5.5 billion debt lawsuit that involved his company, Honeywell Flour Mills Plc alongside Anchorage Leisures Ltd and Siloam Global Ltd.
This shows that creating a landmark does not come cheap or easy. The influential businessman has been dragged to court by Ecobank who filed a debt lawsuit against his company.
Flour Mills ‘Buys’ Honeywell Flour Mills
On November 22, 2021, Honeywell Flour Mills Plc (HFMP) sold the highest of its holding to Flour Mills of Nigeria (FMN) Plc. It was a relief for some investors who said Honeywell Flour Mills was no longer doing well.
In the agreement, Vanguard reported that FMN acquires 71.69 per cent majority shareholding interest in HFMP.
Flour Mills of Nigeria which is the manufacturer of the Golden Penny brand of flour, pasta, semolina, sugar, starch, oil, spreads and breakfast cereals has been in the food and agro-allied since 1960.
While Oba Otedeko is the founder of Honeywell Flour Mills, the acquisition of 71.69 per cent in the company means FMN is now the owner of the HFMP
Otudeko Wife and Children:
Otundeko is married to Adebisi Aderonke Otudeko co-founder of Oba Otudeko Foundation.
The couple are blessed with 3 children (two daughters, one son) namely:
According to Forbe’s 2014 list of richest Africans, the net worth of Oba Otudeko was estimated at $550Million. The founder of Honeywell Group is a billionaire whose stakes in First Bank and Honeywell are worth over NGN10 Billion, as of March 2021
- Featured Image by thenation
- Olowogboyega, Olumuyiwa (April 29, 2021). “CBN asks First Bank to call in Otudeko’s Honeywell Flour Mills loan facility”. Techcabal.com. Retrieved January 24, 2022
- Nnorom, Nkiruka (November 22, 2021). “Flour Mills acquires majority stake in Honeywell Flour Mills”. Vanguardngr.com. Retrieved January 27, 2022