The foremost retail citadel of learning in Nigeria, Retail Academy has graduated her first set of retail entrepreneurs after successfully completing the Retail Entrepreneurship Development Program (REDP) of the Academy. The Program which lasted for two months is designed to equip participants with the requisite up to date global best practices and retail business success principles – knowledge, skills and attitudes – required to start and run a successful retail business. The program is also very relevant to those who have already started their retail businesses, but are having challenges and desires a successful turnaround.
Speaking exclusively with Retail Info and BrandInfo at the graduation ceremony which took place last weekend, the President of Bervidson Retail Group, Mr. Joseph Ebata said that the Retail Academy was set up by Bervidson Retail Group in response to the retail industry demand at The Retail Leaders’ Conference in 2017 for a retail academy that will among other things develop retail career minded individuals and entrepreneurs with the retail industry specific skills and knowledge needed to excel as a retail employee or retail entrepreneur.
He noted that the Retail Academy was put together as a way of supporting the retail industry in Nigeria and Nigeria in general. “To date the Academy have graduated 2 sets of from the Retail Training & Internship Program (RTIP) – A program that train the unemployed and support them in getting retail jobs. Many are already gainfully employed and now have a means of livelihood. In addition, those graduating today from the Retail Entrepreneurship Development Program (REDP) are setting up retail businesses that will in turn provide employment to many Nigerians. This will go a long way in supporting the government to reduce unemployment in the country.”
According to him, the Academy started with these two major programmes – Retail Training Internship Program (RTIP) and Retail Entrepreneurship Development Program (REDP).
Ebata disclosed that RTIP is designed to help the unemployed, train them and release them to the industry for employment opportunities, adding that the purpose of the programme is to solve the problem of unemployment in Nigeria and help the industry to get competent staff to work in retail.
He also noted that REDP is set out to help rebuild retail entrepreneurs to learn how to start and run a successful retail business. The renowned retail expert said that the students that graduated are actually the first set of the REDP.
The REDP Regular, according to him runs on Saturdays for two months, while the REDP Executive runs for one week, Monday to Friday.
Other programs coming on soon are: Retail Associate Development Program (RADP) for entry level retail employees and Retail Supervisor Development Program (RSDP) for retail supervisors, he added.
Some of the graduands who spoke with RETAIL INFO and BRANDINFO expressed their happiness and explained how the programme has been an eye opener to them.
Mrs. Khairat Adaranijo, Managing Director, Khabonys Enterprises & President – REDP 1
I am happy to be graduating today and I thank God that I came for this programme. Before coming for this programme I was running the business on my own with little I know, but this academy has helped me to realize a lot of mistakes I made in the past. Putting what we were taught here into practice has indeed helped my business. We have been taught about the process in retail business which will help us to struggle-less with our businesses.
My message for retailers out there is that they should apply for this programme, it will help their businesses a lot. It is this kind of programme that will bring a positive turnaround to their businesses. So many people are struggling with their businesses today because they believe in the little they know. I want to tell them that they should apply for this training because it is what they need.
Mrs. Fadesola Adedeji – Setting up a Retail Supermarket
I feel very blessed to be among the graduands. The programme has done so many positives things to me. Before the programme, to relate with people is a problem to me, but with the training we were given, I believe I can relate very well with my customers to make them happy, not only my customers, but also my staff.
I am going into supermarket business. Part of what we were taught during this programme which I will apply is to make my customers and staff happy and become a successful business woman.
I will advice people out there to come for this training. Also, the organizer needs to create more awareness for the programme. They need to publicize it for people to know that we have this kind of programme in Nigeria because a lot of people travel out of Nigeria looking for this kind of programme.
Ofure Rey Siokpere, Managing Director, Alpha Concepts Stores (online retail store)
The programme was indeed wonderful. I am so excited to be part of the graduands. I was able to know what retail is all about and the need for personal commitment, determination and passion. This programme has added a whole lot to me. It changed my paradigm on how I relate with customers. Now I can express love to my external customers not only my internal customers. I am now passionate not only to my internal customers who are my employees, but also my external customers. I learned that these people are part of my life, they are not strangers to me at all. I have have learnt thet putting myself in their shoes helps me more to give them more value for their monies. I also learned that retail is about the customer satisfaction and happiness. It is also about the business profitability, growth and sustainability. There are times you have to sacrifice to make your customers happy because when you do that you gain customers’ repeat business, loyalty and positive advocacy.
I will appeal, advice and suggest to people out there to make this programme a priority. If they want their businesses to grow, they need to acquire this knowledge. And when it comes to acquiring knowledge about retail business and how to start and run a successful retail business or achieve a successful turnaround of your ailing retail business, then Retail Academy is the right place for you. I am proud to be an Alumnus of the Academy.