Nairametrics| The CEO and founder of Wakanow Obinna Ekezie has announced that his Travel Agency is opening office in the UK.
Here he is explaining the development
We are very delighted about the forthcoming launch of Wakanow UK, and this excitement stems from our conviction that this addition has the capacity to offer something different to the European market when it comes to travelling into Africa. Our protocol services into Africa is built on very strong relationships and will ensure our prospective customers get the most hitch-free and hassle-free movement in and out of the continent.
“Wakanow has honed her skills in African travel over the last 8 years and will bring that to bear in not only offering best priced deals but making sure that her interactions with these travelers will deliver a more positive narrative for African businesses”.
Wakanow also explains that the UK launch will herald the opening of several other Wakanow offices across Africa, with offices in Kenya and South Africa already under way. And riding on the back of advanced technology, Wakanow will “switch on” her online booking portals in six other African countries including Uganda, Rwanda, Senegal, Ivory Coast and Tanzania. Other countries include Dubai and the US.
Rise of Wakanow
According to Industry sources, Wakanow (started in 2008) has cornered about 10% of Nigeria’s Travel and Tours market said to be worth about N100 billion as at 2015. Sources also suggest that their model of expanding in other markets outside Nigeria provides them with the economies of scale to serve Nigerians in diaspora and from all over the world. It doesn’t stop there.
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Wakanow can also replicate this same Nigerian model for other Africans in diaspora. By leveraging on technology and setting up offices in Nigeria, Rwanda, Senegal, Ivory Coast etc. Wakanow can cater to millions of Africans in a language and culture that they understand helping them further expand their market share beyond the African border.
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So is this good news or bad news for the Nigeria economy?
Wakanow opening in other countries outside Nigeria particularly in Europe, should help boost Nigeria’s export potential. In an ideal world, you’d expect that the company’s foreign exchange earnings will be repatriated into Nigeria helping boost the economy on the long run. This in fact is what we expect from most Nigerian economies.
However, it’s not that easy folks, as it all depends on Wakanow’s business model. The company may well be Nigerian but might feel safer stashing its cash abroad rather than repatriating into Nigeria. It’s investors could also need their money outside of the shores of Nigeria than in Nigeria. All of this depends of course on the direction of Nigeria’s forex policy.
Some pundits even believe local businesses with operations abroad feel more at home outside the shores of Nigeria than within buttressing the need to improve our decayed infrastructure and improve the ease of doing business. Let’s hope someone in government is watching.