Entrepreneur Highlights Job Opportunities in Logistics Business
By Ashemiriogwa Emmanuel
One of the biggest employers of labour in Festac Town, Lagos, Mr Chidi Anyina, founder of ACOA Courier, a logistics company under the Jumia logistics partnership network, has shared an insight into the growing importance of the business to job creation and expansion.
Recounting the grass-to-grace story of his logistics business, Mr Anyina said he was able to expand his workforce from three staff members in a corner of one room to 37, providing support to Jumia in delivering packages to big cities, secondary cities and rural areas.
“We have been with Jumia for the past eight years. We started off just in a boys’ quarter of about two rooms, with just a bike, a van, and two other staff.
“Now, we have graduated to having about 37 staff spread across three environments in two states; Lagos (Festac Town and Satellite) and then Aba,” he said.
The business, which mainly involves improving customers delivery experience, has been an indicator of e-commerce as an enabler of job creation and empowerment.
According to Mr Ayinla, “We started off doing about a hundred orders every other day. Now, we did 17,000 orders in June.
“That shows the scale that we’ve grown over the course of the years. We’ve seen ups and downs; we’ve lost and we’ve gained. But most importantly, we’ve impacted the community; we’re like the biggest employer of labour in Festac Town.”
Speaking on the effect of the pandemic on logistics business, the ACOA Courier boss remarked that it was a difficult time where they had to up their game, especially by securing a larger facility, in order to meet the increasing demands of customers during the lockdown.
“COVID-19 was a tough time. At that point, we were having volumes in spite of the lockdown and the restrictions. We saw a surge in processing orders for nose masks, as well as hand sanitisers. That was the initial shock.
“And we graduated to having food items, noodles packs, and stuff. That was how that season went. It was even a time when we realized we had a boom because many of the markets were shut down and many people had to fulfil orders outside of the market so they were coming to us.
“We had to scale our operations, and even moved from a duplex to a duplex and a boys quarters just to be able to absorb the volume of items that were coming up at that time,” he said.