Five things Nigerians need to know before buying car spare parts featuring Ezeodili Ebubechukwu Chigozie of Ucheez Investment Limited
Please let’s get to meet you
My name is Ezeodili Ebubechukwu Chigozie and I have been a director at Ucheez Investment Limited for about 3 years. I am a Nigerian from Anaocha Local Government Area of Anambra State and a graduate of Federal University of Technology Owerri (FUTO) where I studied Computer Science
What was your key driving force to become an entrepreneur and did you conceive the business idea?
The demand for quality servicing of automobiles and providing exceptional spare parts that would ensure an elongated life span of vehicles matched with the desire to be independent and provide quality services to customers while growing income
How did you raise funding for your venture and customer base?
Through loans and from family members after I pitched the idea to them and guarantee that the return on their investment is secured. We have generated a good customer base through building good relationships with customers by ensuring quality customer service and treating customers with the utmost respect
How do you market your business, and which tactics have been most successful?
I have found that referrals work best in marketing the business. Most people will put in a good word when you meet and exceed their expectations
Can you share one or two points about the auto spare parts market in Nigeria as it relates to your customers
The market is very wide and vast. We deal in all kinds of automobile parts. But for customer’s sake I would share some things to note when buying car spare parts in Nigeria
- Know your seller
Before purchasing an auto spare part, it is highly important to know all the important information about the seller as well as his credentials, as there are lots of tricksters out there trying to trick you.
- Compare Prices
Always try to avoid getting hooked instantly on a deal that seems too good to pass up.
It is always good to take some time to surf through several vendors’ stores and note down what each seller offers for the particular auto part you are seeking.
- Verify the genuineness of the product
Before you buy any spare parts, the most necessary thing is to verify the genuineness of the part, whether it is in proper working condition or not or the part meets your requirements.
You could also go through the guiding manual to check for its genuineness. Always remember to check product details (like a part number), description, compatibility information, etc as these aspects are difficult to overestimate in spare parts purchase.
Also beware, if there is a heavy discount on a product; there are chances that the product is fake. Because most of the time it is just a vendor trying to get rid of the existing stock.
- Warranty/Guarantee/ return policy
Another thing to keep in mind while purchasing a spare-part is to check whether the parts come with Guarantee/ Warranty period or not, since it allows you to return or demand renewal if the product is within the promised period. It also works as insurance and also guarantees genuineness of the item
- Check for Installation services
If you’re purchasing auto parts online then check if the vendor has a presence in your area, if not, then whether the vendor sends an expert from its company or has local partners who could send a technician to your place to install your recently purchased product.
Can you describe/outline your typical day and how you balance it with family life?
My typical day revolves around attending to customers in all kinds of ways, some wanting to know the current price of a good, while others sending money for goods they require and the whole management of the value processes in our business. Like most Ibo Businesses, the family has taken up the initiative to be involved in the business, therefore they are aware of the intricacies of the business and how it affects them
What Motivates you and how do you generate new ideas?
The desire to provide my family with the life they deserve and to create a positive impact in my immediate community inspires me. I generate new ideas by studying the market and trying to identify opportunities for growth. Discussing with like-minded individuals also helps in creating ideas that I then ruminate on and flesh up
What is your greatest fear as an entrepreneur, and how do you manage it?
My greatest fear as an entrepreneur is getting an unsatisfactory remark from a customer. This may seem rather minute but knowing how my business is marketed by word of mouth, a minor complaint from a customer is sure to spread further. Therefore, to manage it, I try to follow up with my customers to ensure they are satisfied with my services and ensure I answer whatever queries they may have
I believe everyone should be treated with the utmost respect. Also, integrity is key in how I live my life and do my business
What are your ideals and what is your definition of success? Is there any pattern to be a successful entrepreneur?
I am a simple man, for me success is when I am able to provide for my family and live a comfortable life, being able to cater to our needs. After studying successful entrepreneurs, the standout patterns are handwork, networking with the right people, advertisement, proper time management, taking risks, and pushing oneself to the limits
What is your favorite aspect of being an entrepreneur and your most satisfying business moment?
My favorite aspect of being an entrepreneur is the randomness of it all. None of my days are the same. There is always a new and interesting problem to be fixed each day.
The most satisfying moment in my business is when a customer calls back to thank me for giving him or her a quality product
What piece of advice would you give to college graduates who want to become entrepreneurs?
I will advise them not to romanticize the idea of becoming an entrepreneur, it’s not all roses. Every day you have to take on a new challenge and it requires passion and drive to do so and the reward requires patience. Therefore, you need to be sure about getting into it