Nigerian born and Joburg based, Olanrewaju Olabode is a young and motivated entrepreneur who has worked hard for his success. At only 31 years old, Lanre has already built a very successful group of companies; The WildCard Group.
Lanre graduated from University of Lagos with a degree in Computer Science and always had a passion for entrepreneurship. He saw himself running a business on the African continent and retiring at age 40.
Following graduation, Lanre began his entrepreneurial journey by setting a “game house “in his neighbourhood that attracted young people to play games at a fee. The game house was so successful that he employed two people to run the business. His passion for being his own boss and love for events led him and a group of friends to start an entertainment company called Wildcard Events & Media.
At age 24, Lanre and friends parted ways. He solely ran WildCard Events and Media which birthed Red Carpet Events – A Red Carpet experience for weddings, concerts, launches and conferences.
His clients list included The Presidency( Nigeria ) , Ogun State ,CMC Connect ,SilverBird Group ,MtvBase and Koga Studio to reference a few . The red carpet experience was a success that it financed Wildcard Production, and Wildcard on TV; a lifestyle and entertainment show was born.
“I have always dreamt of running my own business and never saw myself being an employee “, He Said.
The Inspired Africa(TIA) had an opportunity to ask Lanrewaju Olabode(LO) a few questions About WildCard Group and His move to South Africa, below are his responses.
TIA: The Wildcard Group, tell us more about it?
LO: The Wildcard group of companies comprises of Delivery extreme, Citiride Car rentals, Wildcard Media and The Red Carpet Company. Delivery Extreme is a food delivery franchise which I currently own two areas; Rivonia and Sunninghill. Wildcard Media is the production company where we produce Television content for Multichoice; A travel and lifestyle show The Wildcard show which currently airs on the Dstv West African Bouquet.
TIA: How many partners do you have and do you have employees? If so how many?
LO: I did have partners from 2009 to 2011, but we parted ways to pursue different ventures. However, I have 20 full time employees under Delivery Extreme and Citiride car rentals.
TIA: What challenges have you encountered on your journey as young entrepreneur?
LO: We live in a world where age matters, to be taken seriously by those close to you and the business community is challenge apart from funding for a business.
Young people are considered to be reckless and irresponsible therefore it has taken me a lot of discipline and sacrifice to make my companies what they are today.
The move from Nigeria to South Africa was also a challenge but all is stable.
TIA: Where do you see your business in 5 years?
LO: I would like to see the Wildcard group with offices all over the African continent.
TIA: Hobbies, Any?
LO: I enjoy reading; i am currently reading “Crushing It” by Gary Vaynerchuk. I love exploring new places through photography hence my passion turned into a business Wildcard Media.