With Ayoola Foods, customers are not only always right; they actually take the lead. That is why distributors don’t joke with its yearly customer forum.
It’s always a payback time for them. It is also a time for them to share testimonies about the products and also make suggestions that will enhance the company’s growth.
The exercise has paid off. Year after year, the company keeps improving its past performance. It has successfully made inroads into the Nigerian market, delivering quality packaged foods in style.
Ayoola Foods are Poundo Yam, Plantain Flour, Rice Flour, Potato flour, fufu flour, and a host of others.
All these products have not only become household names, but they have also helped to buoy the economy of those who sell them.
At the 2023 customer forum which took place at Raddison Blu, Ikeja, Lagos on January 28, many of the distributors had cause to go home smiling.
The managing director of the organisation, Engr. Segun Olaye stepped up the game this year when he rewarded the first 20 distributors to get to the venue of the forum with some cash gift. That is just for keeping to time.
But the main deal was the reward for distributors who met their target for the year. Depending on their sales, they all went home with some reasonable amount of money and strategic gift items. Both the cash reward and gift items were breathtaking.
Ayoola Foods gives back to customers
Nobody sells Ayoola foods with a tinge of regret. The distributors and the company are intertwined acting like brothers and sisters.
Just last year when there was a fire outbreak at the Oke Arin market in Lagos destroying shops of some of the distributors, the company rose to their assistance and gave them support. It has always been a win-win for the company and those who sell its products.
Business climate is bad but…
But it’s been a long walk, given the downturn in the economy and the decreasing purchasing power of people.
Olaye noted that the nation is going through the most trying period ever experienced in the business environment adding however that God has been faithful to the company.
Read also: How we navigate tough business environment-Segun Olaye: https://churchtimesnigeria.net/ayoola-foods-business-olaye/
He said, “It is God that has kept us going. At a time I was thinking I should postpone the customer forum given the situation in the country. But then we had to keep faith with our distributors because we hold them in high esteem.
“We thank God for keeping us alive to see today. We appreciate distributors, brand ambassadors, and all those who have taken part in making today a success. We thank you for the role you played last year”
Paucity of cash
The paucity of cash in the country is also a worrisome development. According to him, “most of the farmers in the villages where we buy produce deal in cash. They don’t know how the political situation will turn out, so they are being careful as regards selling their farm produce.”
The three outstanding distributors
The odds notwithstanding, Olaye gave special recognition to the first three major distributors of Ayoola Foods in the year under review. They are Palosi Investment, Amo State Global, and Ola Ventures.
They were awarded cash gifts apart from the incentives they got for meeting their targets.
The MD noted that 70 percent of the company’s output for the year was sold by 25 percent of its distributors. He commended the distributors for their commitment to the brand while also assuring that the organisation will continue to improve its performance.
The report card for the 2022 sales year is indeed cheering. Most distributors met their yearly target. Managing Director of Palosi Investment, Deacon Paul Ossai who took the first position in the list of distributors was the one who also came first in 2021.
He told Church Times in a later interview that his company sells a trailer load of Ayoola Foods every month.
The forum gave room for the distributors to share their observations and make suggestions on how the company could enhance its brands. One of the issues they complained about is not being able to get enough supply of the products.
The implication is that the company is not meeting the growing demand for its products. They also pleaded with the organisation not to stop the yearly ritual of giving incentives to distributors; as the gesture has been a great motivator for them.
Many of them commended the company for how it cared for their welfare. Those who got support after their shops got burnt at the Oke-Arin market last year also expressed deep appreciation to the company.
The forum featured a special session with all the brand ambassadors including, Mrs. Idowu Philips known as Mama Rainbow, Odunlade Adekola, and Ali Nuhu.
Rachael Okonkwo, who is the brand ambassador for the organisation in the east of Nigeria could not attend the event. But clips of her exploits in the east with the poundo yam brand were relayed at the forum.
The brand ambassadors entertained questions and shared testimonies of people’s perspectives of Ayoola foods.
A drama group of the organisation also staged a playlet to demonstrate the impact and strategic positioning of the food company.
Earlier, the executive director of the organization, Mrs. Eunice Odidison gave a rundown of the humungous gift items given to all the distributors for meeting their target. The gifts range from generating sets, deep freezers, and tricycle vans
She hinted at how the company had deployed technology to drive its sales and also informed the forum of coming changes that would enhance the easy distribution of the products.
Indeed, that Saturday, Ayoola Foods moved a step higher in its public rating. The traumatizing economic situation notwithstanding, the company seems poised to continue to change the paradigm in the food business in Nigeria.