Speaking on the topic “Retail and Nigerian Made Goods: An unexploited Goldmine” at the conference, the former Managing Director/Chief Executive Officer, Bank of Industry (BOI) Mr Waheed Olagunju disclosed that government will continue to support the retail industry to grow and fulfil its potential. He cited the ease of doing business, taxation and protection of properties as some of the policies the government have put in place to provide a conducive environment for doing business in Nigeria.
Olagunju further noted that retail in Nigeria is a sector that the government cannot afford to ignore as it contributes about 7 percent to national employment and grossed a total national sales of $125 billion in 2016
Olagunju represented by BOI Divisional Head (South), Small and Medium Enterprises, Abdul-Ganiyu Mohammed said Demand for indigenous products will increase when market mechanics such as quality assurance, product awareness, price regulation and consumer protection are ensured.
While speaking on how to unlock profitable growth in Nigeria’s retail sector, Olagunju advised retailers to strive to understand their customers. He noted some key issues retailers must pay attention to if they must continue to stay relevant. “Retailers must define their proposition to stay relevant, make customers experience seamless, fast and efficient across their channels, invest in quality, embrace technology and invest in it, and drive decisions through continuous analysis.
Olagunju further called for more capacity building programme for bankers and retailers, funding of the retail sector and greater support for Nigerian retailers, particularly buy made in Nigeria goods.