By Oladapo Sofowora
Seasons have passed and decades have gone by but luxury real estate mogul, Oluwasijibomi Ogundele, the M.D and C.E.O of Sujimoto Construction Company, remains grand, like the nurturant guardian whose tenderness and warmth blesses the land.
As the young billionaire luxury property mogul sauntered into age 40 yesterday April 8, many leaders and entrepreneurs across the world sent their goodwill message to share in his pot full of joy. The moneybag who learned the rudiment of business from his mother would be entrenching a culture of success and acclaim that has been the inspiration for generations of aspiring entrepreneurs and Nigeria’s nouveau riche.
Unlike his peers who are still struggling to find their feet in business, Sujimoto has redefined Banana Island; the wealthiest residential neighborhood in Nigeria with amazing projects like GiulianoBySujimoto, LucreziaBySujimoto, LeonardoBy Sujimoto all in Banana Island. The S-Hotel Ikoyi and QueenAminaBySujimoto currently taking off in Abuja.
For the Law graduate of Anglia Ruskin University, England, there are many things he envisaged to have achieved before turning 40. To mark his 40th birthday, sources said the Motomatics theory originator is not relenting on his oars, most especially until Nigeria finally takes a new look at the European medieval, renaissance, and modern luxury designs making it a tourist attraction and a point of reference as the giant of Africa. “Sujimoto is taking his trade out of Nigeria with his newest idea, a 44 storey building Sujimoto tower to be erected on 6,500 Psm land in the corner of Dubai downtown. The 44-floor edifice will conveniently boast ultra-luxury residences, hotel suites, and top-notch retail. Hotel franchise Fourseasons and Bacarrat will likely come on board. Other Luxury retails like Graff Private, Pateck Phillip, Vacheron, Constantine, Vertu, and many other ultra-luxury retail brands. Top restaurants like Cipriani, Nusret, and many others. The Sujimoto tower will be the first African tower in the middle of Dubai. He will also be the first African to build a tower in the Middle East.”
Ogundele can be described as a rose that grew from the Agege suburb in Lagos to become one of the filthy rich young Nigerians. He is indeed a treasured rose who built a multi-billion Naira property empire that is currently changing the face of luxury real estate in Nigeria. No doubt, Mr. Luxury, as he is fondly called, has blossomed into a man of affluence, style, class, and integrity. He looms large across generations into eternity. To his staff, family, friends, beneficiaries, and loved ones, his smiles have been their anchor, his shoulders their rampart of comfort to lean.
Unlike the fabled explorer, Christopher Columbus, Sujimoto had a well-thought plan when he founded his luxury real estate dynasty Sujimoto Construction Company over 5 years ago. He proved that he was no rookie in the cut-throat world of business in the country’s real estate sector. When delving into the luxury real estate industry, he came with beyond-the-ordinary ideas, aiming at shattering the stereotype to be the shining light that would redefine the skylines of Nigeria with an audacious architectural masterpiece project that will compete with the rest of the world. His road was rough. Engaging in the spirit of tenacity, with a renewed passion that is not given to mediocrity, he was able to navigate through the murky waters of business typhoons directed to sink him.
He is a skilled survivalist; for instance, just when many have written him off on the strength of his brush when Nigeria entered recession and his LorenzoBySujimoto project could not continue. He had to refund over 450Million Naira to off-takers. At this point, doubting Thomas’ thought it was the end of his business career. But with the heart of Hercules and the fearlessness of Achilles, he was able to rise above his travails, re-strategize and reconfigure his dreams, and gave it another shot. This time around he was able to succeed despite all odds against him.