This outgoing trade mission to Lagos was organised by NABC’s Daan Vreeburg and was led by chairman Ben Zwinkels. The 5-day mission arrived on February 20 and consisted of nine delegates representing seven Dutch companies.
“We were not yet active in Nigeria, and as we find it to be quite a complex country we realized that attending this mission would be an excellent chance to make some initial headway in the country,” said Bernhard Krikke of Suba Seeds, two weeks after returning home. “I am just finalising a proposition for a client we met in Nigeria. They would like to become the gateway for high quality seeds because this is lacking in Nigeria.”
Logistics company Van den Bosch’s Alix Visser also looked back at a successful trade mission: “I was the only participant who was already familiar with doing business in Nigeria, as I visit the country at least every 4 months. Nevertheless, I felt it was useful to participate because being part of a group opens new doors and leads to useful business insights” Mr. Visser said.
Van den Bosch used the visit to Nigeria to close in on a deal with GMT, a logistics service provider for Unilever Nigeria. “This was an excellent moment to sign our agreement,” Mr. Visser said. His company is most enthusiastic about the opportunities in Nigeria. “Some people say that Ghana is booming, but in my opinion, Nigeria is way ahead of Ghana in terms of business opportunities.”
Cooperation with Asoko
A huge success during the trade mission was NABC’s cooperation with member Asoko Insight, a Dutch/British corporate data company that specialises in supplying high-level information about African companies through an online database. “It is usually quite difficult to establish whether the person you are dealing with is reliable or represents a reliable company,” said Bernhard Krikke. “The involvement of Asoko Insight, which included a six-month subscription to their database, provided a lot of added value.”
NABC’s mission team also looked back at a successful week, with Mr. Vreeburg specifically pointing out that a small delegation ensured for higher quality: “with seven companies on board we had plenty of opportunities ensure it was tailored to each of the delegates. I am also very happy to hear that business deals have been made immediately” he said. Mr. Krikke further also added that “during trade missions I always make sure I visit a market, just to see the types of FFV (fresh fruits and vegetables) on sale. This was arranged well for us and included some extra security on the ground.”
Mr. Visser now thinks that more business deals may follow. “In just a few days I met some representatives of the larger multinationals, people who you usually cannot easily meet.” Following the positive feedback on the mission, Mr. Vreeburg is sure that more missions to Nigeria are to follow. “We should certainly plan follow-up meetings to Africa’s biggest economy.”