Omolaja Emmanuel’s journey from childhood curiosity to leading Renewworld Global Limited serves as an inspiring tale of tenacity, innovation, and problem-solving. In a country grappling with energy challenges, his unwavering commitment to building sustainable solutions paints a hopeful picture of a brighter future for Nigeria.
Omolaja Emmanuel, the co-founder and CEO of Renerworld Global Limited, embarked on a journey that transformed his childhood curiosity into a thriving business. From dismantling Christmas lights to illuminate his room to winning accolades for his innovative solutions, Emmanuel’s path showcases the power of passion, perseverance, and problem-solving.
Growing up as an inquisitive child, Emmanuel demonstrated an early affinity for science and hands-on projects. His fascination with solar energy began when his father returned from a trip to China and told him about his encounter with solar energy. The next time Emmanuel heard about solar energy was in an agricultural class where he was being taught about using solar energy to dry food items. However, it wasn’t until he was studying Electrical and Computer Engineering at the University of Lagos (UNILAG) that he came in contact with solar panels. He had spotted some abandoned solar panels on campus, and his curiosity led him to refurbish them to power parts of his faculty.
His National Youth Service Corps (NYSC) deployment to Mambilla Plateau was a defining moment for him as it exposed him to the practicality of solar energy in off-grid regions. Powering his apartment and generating income by charging gadgets enlightened him on solar’s viability. This experience solidified his resolve to pursue renewable energy full-time, setting the foundation for Renerworld’s mission.
Renerworld Global Limited’s mission is clear: to address Nigeria’s electricity deficiency by providing reliable and affordable solar solutions. He is focused on powering homes and businesses with sustainable energy alternatives to enhance the standard of living by reducing generator-related costs.
Emmanuel’s growth strategy is centered on tenacity, ingenuity, and relentless pursuit. His ability to remain bold in the face of challenges proves vital.
“Entrepreneurship is hard. And you can’t survive it by being timid. You have to be bold; bold enough to be able to speak to people about your products or services.
When I started my business, I thought I could do so many things behind the scenes. But when things began to go downhill, I had to start sharing flyers and talking to people about our solutions. So as an entrepreneur, you have to go out there and do whatever will make your business survive.”
Winning the 25under25 Award in his category marked a turning point for Renerworld. In fact, it was his first-ever award. The financial aid he received came at a very critical time that eventually became a stepping stone to winning a $10,000 grant shortly afterward. The ripple effect of these awards and recognition boosted his team’s morale. It also opened doors to new opportunities and partnerships.
“Ever since it has been an upward journey. I’ve seen a lot more people interested in investing in our business. It has given us a seat at tables that we never thought we would sit at. The award has been instrumental to our growth.”
Emmanuel’s journey from humble beginnings to a recognized industry leader showcased the power of perseverance and innovation, and his words of advice to aspiring entrepreneurs are:
“Make sure you are solving an actual problem. Businesses that end up surviving and surviving well are those that solve real problems. Start a business because you want to solve a need in society.
Secondly, the journey is not going to be easy. The applause and recognition may not come during your early days, but just keep building. It will come eventually.
And lastly, don’t underestimate the importance of having a team. You don’t know it all, so try to collaborate with people around you. Find a way to rub minds with friends, acquaintances, or mentors because they will one way or the other help you see things from different perspectives.”
As Renerworld continues to grow and impact lives, Emmanuel envisions it as a renewable energy conglomerate and market leader, touching the lives of over 50,000 Nigerians, especially those in underserved communities.
SME100 Africa is on a mission to recognize and celebrate the passion, grit, and determination of many other young entrepreneurs like Emmanuel.