Meet Alexander Amosu, the man connecting luxury brands with wealthy Africans

Everything you need to know about Lux Afrique…

Three reasons you should be watching them

VITAL STATISTICS

  • Company: Lux Afrique

  • What it does, in a sentence: Lux Afrique connects luxury brands with high net wealthy Africans

  • Founded: January 2016 in London

  • Founder/s: Alexander Amosu

  • Size of team: 16

  • Your name and role: Alexander Amosu CEO

THE NEED-TO-KNOW

What problem are you trying to solve?

Africa has some of the fastest growing economies in the world. In recent years, six of the ten fastest growing economies were based in Africa. We have a range of services designed to link luxury brands to relevant consumers who can afford and enjoy their products, largely through our online portal.

How big is the market – and how much of it do you think you can own? According to a report by KPMG, there will be 257,519 millions in Africa by 2024, a rise of 53 per cent. This figure is exceptional, and I intend to own a large part of the luxury goods market, by building on my existing relationships with high net worth individuals that I have built throughout my career, and through the development of the online portal. In effect, we intend to take on the whole continent of Africa.

How do you make money? We get a small fee every time someone buys a product.

Who’s on your team that makes you think you can do this? We have the best people, in different fields who understand the luxury market and who have proven experience in their relevant disciplines. I don’t claim to know everything, but my team consists of people that are skilled and passionate about what they do, and more importantly, they have the proven ability to execute and deliver results.

Who’s bankrolling you? Me. Because I have had a number of successful businesses, all of my businesses are self-funded, and I am not reliant on external forces. I sold one of my businesses for £9m, and funding has not been an issue for a while. That makes me happy as it means I am able to research, plan and execute business ideas, without having to wait for the money to come in.

What advice would you give other entrepreneurs trying to secure that kind of finance? Finance is always the stumbling block for entrepreneurs, however I would always advise to have your company running and proving the concept works before getting investors.

What do you believe the key to growing this business is? The key to growing any business is demand. Luxury brands have already tapped into the Russian, Arab, and Chinese market. Africa Is the next frontier.

What metrics do you look at every day?

I look at a number of KPIs, including the number of high net worth clients on a database, our social media pages and our website numbers. We want to ensure that we are serving as many clients possible in the best way, so it’s important to keep an eye on who is on our list. Our online portal is the “shop front”, so our website numbers, and social media data gives me a good indication as to whether our marketing efforts are working. Our question is always “are we best serving the African market?”

What’s been the most unexpectedly valuable lesson you’ve learnt so far? Make sure you have the right people on your team. Having the wrong team members, who are self-serving or not up to parr will cost you in time, and it can certainly cost you money. I have a pretty good instinct about people, but I also get team members checked out by my discerning agent, who is an integral part of my team. The right team members should be able to understand your vision, and run with it without too much hand-holding. I am all for mentoring, but it has to be in the right capacity, not necessarily when we should be executing.

What’s been your biggest mistake so far? Lux Afrique is still young, so we have not made any big mistakes yet. If / when we do make mistakes, we will learn and move forward.

What do you think is on the horizon for your industry in the year ahead? Luxury brands will stop sleeping on the African continent and realise that it is just as important as any other market.

Which London start-up/s are you watching, and why? To be honest, I am not watching any other start-ups. There are a few start-ups that I am mentoring, but I am very focused on getting Lux Afrique to where it should be.

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