How to stand out as a credible Nigerian Chef and grow more customers – Temitayo Eguabor
Let’s get to meet you. Please tell us about yourself and your background?
My Name is Mrs. Temitayo Eguabor, I am the Creative Director of Cakes and Chocolates Factory.
I am a Keto/ Low Carb Pastry Chef, a Chocolatier, and a Cake Maker.
I grew up at Ogba in Lagos State. I attended Flora Nursery and Primary School and proceeded to Federal Government College Odogbolu. I attended the University of Lagos where I studied Banking and Finance and also bagged an MBA in Marketing from the same University.
I Worked with Multilinks Telecom for 10 years in the Customer Service and Marketing Departments.
What inspired you into getting into this line of business? Is it something you had always wanted to do as a child?
Talking about inspiration, my dad loved pastries and my favorite spot in the home was the kitchen… so I did a lot of culinary practicals.
By virtue of being the last girl, my place was automatically in the kitchen which I grew up to love.
Baking to me is both an Art and Science which entails Creativity and Ingenuity.
In my quest to enhance these attributes I have undergone Tutelage from Several Culinary Schools and Personalities.
Starting up a business in Nigeria comes with a lot of challenges, what are the challenges you faced and how did you get around them?
Some of the major challenges we encounter include ingredients and price instability, due to the fact that most are imported.
We try as much as possible to stock in bulk with its attendant challenges, above all, God has been Gracious to us with Empathetic Customers who understand the times and the prevailing circumstances whence there is a need for a price review.
Another challenge is staffing. It’s quite strenuous getting honest, diligent, and dedicated staff which is core for business survival.
We give incentives to our staff and try to create a conducive working environment.
However, these are sometimes not enough to deter recalcitrant. With God on our side, we have fared well in terms of staffing.
We are experiencing a lot of awakening in Nigeria on the need for fitness and diet control and as a professional low-carb pastries expert, what kind of dietary advice would you recommend for people?
I would recommend a low carbohydrate diet, lots of water, Fruits, Nuts, Vegetables, and Exercise. Let your food be your medicine for we are simply what we eat.
The global cocoa and chocolate market size was valued at USD 44.35 billion in 2019 and is projected to reach USD 61.34 billion by 2027, How do you think a country like Nigeria can benefit from this trend economically.
With a large amount of Cocoa in Nigeria, there is a huge economic potential we can harness and these include improvement on our yields, doing away with the idea of exporting our raw cocoa, and investing in the value chain of processing the cocoa into finished products.
Thereby creating jobs and earning a share in the global market of Chocolate products.
Being a chef comes with a lot of hard work and commitment. What are the norms and values required for an up-and-coming chef to succeed in the industry?
1st and foremost Discipline, hunger, and thirst to learn new things, identifying your potential customers and target audience. I believe businesses can only thrive through repeated purchases. Customer retention is a top priority for every business.
We also know that there is a lot of competition in the food industry which makes customer retention is a tough call. Do you have any initiative that makes your customer experience stand out?
For us, Customer Satisfaction is prime Exceeding Customers Expectations is always our Target.
We also place a high premium on Customers Feedback to help improve our business experience.
What should Nigeria and the rest of the world expect from you and your brand in the nearest future?
We see an indigenous brand showcasing a vast array of local and foreign Pastries with a touch of class, netting international standards.
We look forward to achieving our Pods 2 Products Agenda, by which we would offer to the world, Chocolate products, sourced and processed locally.