Cherub Olusanya-David, a lawyer-turned-fashion and knowledge entrepreneur, runs an online store on Instagram called Cherubsrarefinds, which provides unique fashion items for the modern day career woman.Having alsotrained about 100 budding entrepreneurs in the dropshipping business model, she has written Dropshipping Done Right, a book that contains useful information on how to effectively use the business model. She discusses her passion in this chat with KATELEMI CLAUDE.
While fashion entrepreneur may be popular, knowledge entrepreneur may not. So, who is a knowledge entrepreneur?
A knowledge entrepreneur is a person who takes conventional knowledge and information, merges them with unique experiences in that sector and deploys them to solve problem(s).
Why did you jettison the legal profession, which is elitist and lucrative, for other ventures outside?
I didn’t jettison the legal profession totally. I still do some corporate law consulting once in a while. However, I found that I always enjoyed doing business.While I was still in full time legal practice as a company secretary I ran the business on the side. Transitioning into full-time entrepreneurship allows me the freedom to express the desires I had to fill a certain gap in the marketplace.
You also run an online store called Cherubsrarefinds. How do you combine all these with home chores?
I believe that there’s time for everything; time for the home and time for business. Thankfully, we live in a time where house chores can be easily outsourced; so that lightens the workload. I am also blessed with a very handsome partner who sees the care of the home as his responsibility as well.
Explain dropshipping business, which you have trained many people in and written a book on.
Dropshipping is a peculiar type of business model that doesn’t require the seller to stock goods, but transfers the delivery details of the buyer to the supplier once payment is made. All that is needed is a supplier, who sends pictures of their goods to the seller. The seller posts these pictures on their online store and waits for customers to pay. The seller then sends the payment and delivery details to the supplier, who then makes delivery on their behalf. It’s a peculiar business model, in the sense that all a person needs is a phone and data to start. It is low risk, as it requires little or no capital. It is also very lucrative if done the right way. With consistency and diligence, one can easily earn six to seven figures (up to a million naira) a month. Luckily, social media has created an easy avenue to connect with customers on both sides.
How well are your former apprentices doing in the business?
They are all doing well. However, I am particularly proud of all those who implement all they learnt. There was a student who signed up for my dropshipping class. She had been dropshipping prior to the time she took the class, but hadn’t sold anything in three months. A few days after implementing the lessons, she returned excitedly telling me about how she just closed a sale. It is these testimonies that lend credence to the knowledge and experience we pass down to those who are willing to learn and implement.
Of all your chain of businesses, which is the most lucrative?
The online store is currently the most lucrative because it is the oldest of all my businesses. I only ventured into knowledgeentrepreneurship, formally, at the beginning of this year.
Is your spouse supportive in any of the businesses?
My spouse has been extremely supportive.We strategise and revise all my business ideas and plans together. He is probably the most important factor in my success after God.
How do you see Nigeria’s business climate,favourable to entrepreneurs?
The business climate in Nigeria is generally unfavourable to entrepreneurs. The few incentives provided by the government and some private organisations are not enough. It can be compared to a drop of water in an ocean.
What do you expect from the society or government to encourage entrepreneurs?
We need good infrastructure. I know we talk about this all the time, but life will be so much easier for entrepreneurs if government takes care of electricity and fixes the roads to ensure easy transportation of goods around the country. It will also be a huge form of encouragement if policies are put in place to help entrepreneur’s access low interest loans, better working conditions and advanced technological training.
Where do you see yourself and your businesses in the next 10 years?
In the next 10 years, I see myself as a tech-preneur providing a seamless platform for dropshippers in Nigeria to conduct business with people all over the world, safely and conveniently, as well as a major player in the fashion industry.
When will you sit down and tell yourself ‘now I have arrived’?
This is a funny question, because I believe that I am limitless. As we all know, the more we grow, the more the reality of our possibilities expand. So I won’t be able to pinpoint a level I would attain and consider it enough. There is always more.
However, what really makes my heart sing is teaching budding entrepreneurs to make money using the dropshipping business model.
Your advice to budding entrepreneurs, especially those looking up to you and your line of business?
Self-awareness is of outmost importance. You need to understand yourself first to know what value you bring to the table. Consistency pays off big time. It’s better to do something for 20 minutes every day than to do it two hours once a month. I understand that the Nigerian business climate presents its own unique challenges, stay consistent and trust the process.