The future of the supply chain: an exclusive interview with Adebayo Adeleke
Here is his interview with BI Africa
BI Africa: Please inform us about Supply Chain Africa, its specialization and the services your company offers.
Adele: Supply Chain Africa is a digital platform highlighting the particularities and uniqueness of the African supply chain. Supply Chain Africa initially aimed to tell stories of different supply chains in the context of Africa. We wanted Africans to know themselves and what lies within their borders and for stakeholders coming to do business in Africa to understand the business and supply chain terrain.
Now we are redefining ourselves as the supply chain data bank for Africa. We are a digital supply chain intelligence platform providing data bank services for supply chains in Africa and telling the story of African supply chains to the world.
We offer consulting services and supply chain data services. We also offer advertising services – our magazine, newsletter and website offer opportunities for custom digital banner advertising.
BI Africa: How is Supply Chain Africa revolutionizing supply chain management and creating operational efficiency?
Adele: We are revolutionizing supply chain management through our different pillars. Each pillar highlights an aspect of supply chain management and offers solutions.
The first is the publishing pillar which focuses on the Supply Chain Africa magazine, our newsletter, trend reports and infographics. We also explore proprietary articles and podcasts under this pillar. Through these, we tell the story of Africa’s supply chain.
Our community forms the second pillar of Supply Chain Africa, and this community is known as the Supply Chain Digital Network. In the community, supply chain professionals from across the continent share ideas, knowledge and information about what is happening in Africa and around the world. We also professionalize supply chains by developing study programs for supply chain professionals in academia and industry.
The consultancy pillar is where Supply Chain Africa introduces cultural awareness of supply chain to the continent. We bring insights to the different supply chains as we see them in different geopolitical areas of the continent.
The last pillar is that of data and intelligence. We aggregate supply chain data across the continent and integrate it into an interface where anyone can search for anything to do with supply chain intelligence on the continent.
BI Africa: Who are your clients and how has the market reacted to your services?
Adele: Our clients are supply chain professionals and business owners on and off the continent doing business in Africa.
Our clients also include government organizations seeking to develop policies that improve procurement, supply chain and logistics infrastructure.
So far, the market has responded favorably to our offers. We are the first and currently the only one stop shop for the African supply chain. We share knowledge and mentor supply chain professionals in diverse communities.
BI Africa: Supply chain issues around the world have become the new normal. What gives your business a competitive advantage?
Adele: Thank you for this question. Our competitive advantage is our ability to see what is happening in the Horn of Africa, the Sahel and Sub-Saharan Africa, to analyze data in all its facets, to publish and generate intelligence so that the appropriate stakeholders can make executive decisions that help the continent.
BI Africa: What type of collaboration do you expect and need for Supply Chain Africa to succeed?
Adele: We need collaboration at all levels, and we need influencers in different sectors and business owners in Africa and outside. We are also willing to partner with supply chain intelligence or data owners across the continent to provide a one stop shop for our customers’ data needs.
We are open to partnering with small, medium and large organizations that want to advertise or highlight their offerings.
We want to work with innovators, tell their stories and collaborate with women and minority-owned businesses in Africa to highlight their impact on the continent and what they are doing to increase African incomes at all levels.
BI Africa: How have Business and Supply Chain evolved throughout your career?
Adele: He has changed drastically. I’ve been in this industry for 25 years and the supply chain has grown from being the smart kid in the back of a room to one where everyone understands its impact on business.
The supply chain is no longer a footnote in national security initiatives. This is now a vital objective. In the not too distant future, the supply chain will be a new frontier of competition, and whatever infrastructure can push that competition will lead the charge.
BI Africa: What challenges facing the world are important to you?
Adele: There are so many challenges in the world, but understanding risk is paramount to me. Many organizations and business owners do not sufficiently understand risk. Even after what happened during the pandemic, many organizations are still not prioritizing supply chain.
Beyond the risk, the issue of sustainability and climate change is real, and we are not doing enough to stem it. I know the government has put so much effort into it, but what does that work translate into?
We have other issues that are very important to me. Human trafficking and human rights are part of it. It is the illicit way in which certain goods and services that we consume reach us.
Corruption is another challenge, and it’s crucial because it hinders trade and a progressive supply chain.
BI Africa: What is the role of Supply Chain Africa in meeting these challenges?
Adele: By addressing these challenges, Supply Chain Africa is telling the stories of the African supply chain. We highlight the successes, failures, opportunities, uniqueness and polarities of the environment in which we operate. Our stories have been marginalized over time, and Supply Chain Africa speaks volumes to them.
Our infrastructure may not be mature and the security that supports the movement of goods and services is lacking, but that does not mean that the supply chain does not exist in Africa.
We also work with different African leaders to formulate sustainable and climate-friendly policies. We won’t just be talking about climate change; we work with leaders to make a difference.
BI Africa: Who should contact you and why?
Adele: Our primary target markets are businesses, government organizations, NGOs and supply chain professionals on and off the continent.
It is essential to work with us because if you go into business or the supply chain in Africa without having the necessary knowledge, you will make costly mistakes.
As experts, we give advice and provide the necessary connections and contacts.
BI Africa: What advice would you give to people who are making a career or considering joining Business and/or Supply Chain?
Adele: Do it. That’s the advice I have for you. It’s the best job ever. I’m biased because I’ve been doing it for a while, but supply chain is life.
It is the only profession that has evolved enormously. From the pyramids of Egypt until today, the functions of supply chain professionals have remained the same. It’s the one job that has never gone away, and with advancements in technology, it will continue to be redefined.