Bunmi Afolabi, Director-General of Nigerian British Chamber of Commerce shares her insights on how the Connects platform supports chamber priorities
Welcome to our news section: CEO’s Interview! In this section, we discover why chambers of commerce choose to join COBCOE Connects and be.connected and their visions for the platform. Today we are talking to Bunmi Afolabi, Director-General of Nigerian British Chamber of Commerce, one of the chambers joined the Connects.
- How would you describe your chamber and your membership?
The British Chamber of Commerce in Nigeria has 300 members in total. Members are mostly service providers such as banking, insurance, investments and a wide range of financial services. We also have a significant number of accounting, legal firms, and consultancy members, such as PWC for example. We also proud to include a number of publicity and PR companies. In the last couple of years we have also grown with members from the technology sector.
- Could you tell us your Chamber priorities over the coming year?
The most significant priority that we have which matches well with the Connects platform is to provide more trade opportunities for our members. So right now, obviously, as a chamber what our members want is to increase their business when they start their membership. So when they are looking for ways that we, as a chamber, can help, it’s one of the reason why we immediately jumped on the Connects platform because that’s exactly what we are all about.
We also look at other different opportunities. So for example during our recent trade mission where we met with two chambers in the UK, we will be signing an MOU so that when our members look for partnership, we can send those requests to those chambers who can help us find what we need within their members to meet the needs of our members. For companies from the UK looking to come into Nigeria, those chambers can refer their members to us so that we can provide market entry and all other information they might need.
These two priorities are really the main focus for us as a chamber.
- How does/could the COBCOE Connects platform support your delivery of priorities?
As I previously said, the ability to match our members with members of other British Chambers of Commerce. It also provides our members exposure to business opportunities worldwide.
- What directions would you like to see for future support from the platform?
In the future, I would like the platform to be easier to navigate with less intervention by the moderators. It’s relatively easy to get to know how to use the platform, but for people who are not so computer literate, it would be good to have a help function, maybe some kind of tutorial: 5-10 minutes overview of what the platform is about and how to navigate on the platform, so in that way they are not dependent on anyone to be able to start using the platform. Basically all the features that make the platform as user friendly as possible are very welcome.