The Kohinoor, located at 72 Kusenla, Ikate, Elegushi in Lekki Phase II, Lagos, is a world, complete in itself. A stunning combination of style and elegance, the Kohinoor bears testimony to the fact that the world is ruled by ideas. It is a mini first world country of sorts, where Dr. Collins Chike Chikeluba, its founder, reigns as president.
An accomplished lawyer, philanthropist, astute entrepreneur and boardroom strategist, Kohinoor CEO, Chikeluba is an embodiment of success. He was on the board of Nigeria’s apex bank, the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) as a non-executive director. He is the director of American Hospitals Limited, director of Secure Electronic Technology, Chief Executive Officer and Managing Director of GMO group of companies, non-executive director at Pharma Deko Plc among other portfolios.
Yet, dressed in his usual simple native attire, Chikeluba gives not much of his accomplishments away as he shows this reporter around the various sections of the conglomerate that is Kohinoor, while diverting attention at intervals to exchange banters or issue instructions to his numerous employees in a world he is simply known as the “Chairman.”
Interior Kohinoor is a tourist centre of sorts. Housing complex art works and lavishly decorated lounges, restaurants, bakery, Jack and Jill specifically designed to meet kids’ taste, ‘Oja’ fresh food market, among others; it is a marvel to behold.
In front of the main structure are such outposts as ‘Oh! my Grill’ for “suya,” pizza, fish, drinks, sharwama, ‘Cut and Sip’ salon and across the street, a car wash.
“It’s been a long journey,” Chikeluba says. “This took years of commitment and hard work, but above all, sacrifice.”
But perhaps there is something in his genetic makeup that better explains the man he has become. His father, the late Chief Godwin Chikeluba, the ‘Onwa’ of Awka Etiti, Anambra State, was once one of the biggest names in the country’s business environment.
The co-founder of GMO Group, Chikeluba Snr lost his father at a very young age. He had to move to Aba as a teen to take up apprenticeship. And after eight years of apprenticeship, he set out on a journey that would see him become one of Nigeria’s biggest names in commerce. His, life was however, cut short, tragically, in the late 80s. He was gruesomely murdered by assailants, an incident that shook the country and remains unresolved till date. At which time, Chikeluba Jnr was only but a young man.
The killers may have denied the young Chikeluba the opportunity of being guided through life by his father, but not his natural intuition, vision and the focus he needed to succeed. Today, Chikeluba has attained heights that his father would have been extremely proud of. And of course, to him he owes much of the credit.
Now holding the traditional title of ‘Onwa’ Awka Etiti, Chikeluba has successfully transformed the GMO group into a resilient, diversified and profitable business concern in spite of the country’s challenging operating environment.
“My father was a strict disciplinarian,” he says. “He made us imbibe the virtues of hard work. He was a workaholic. He certainly laid the foundation for us in many ways.”
Asked what he believes to be the critical factors in success, he notes: “vision, ideas – you have to know what you want to achieve, it’s important. When you would have identified what you want, then you work towards it, staying focused and making sacrifices. Nothing good comes easy. You have to keep at it.”
Certainly, no one who visits Kohinoor is left in doubt that it was conceived by a person of great ideas.
Designed to meet man’s every need, be that for shelter, food, clothing and leisure, Kohinoor combines residential estates, short let apartments, supermarket – which indeed has sections for sundry products: agricultural products, pharmacy, industrial goods and so on – as well as car wash, barbecue shops and sundry others.
“Kohinoor uniquely showcases various cultures and highlights the international standard we demand in Nigeria,” he says.
“This is attributed to our brand’s attention to detail and unending desire to surpass customer-expectations!”
It is broadly divided into three business categories – Kohinoor Mall, estates and Lifestyle 18 located a short distance at 50 Gbangbala Street, Ikate – with each serving special purposes.
The Lifestyle 18, which essentially comprises 18 exquisitely decorated short let one-bedroom and two-bedroom apartments, provide such facilities as Skyline Fitness, Glam Up Salon, Skyline Spa, Jacuzzi, Ls 18 Lounge, among others.
The Skyline fitness has all modern gym equipment and gym instructors. Skyline Spa offers a variety of skin care solutions. Ls 18 Lounge is a rooftop lounge that allows for aerial view of the landscape.
“All the good things of life – we have them available here,” said the contented Ls 18 General Manager, Mr. Stephen Ekwenugo. “Here we have Life Style, which is 18 apartments. On the last floor, we have skyline spar, we salon, we have skyline fitness, Lifestyle Lounge.
“The beautiful thing about our short let apartments is that when people come here to let, they don’t need to go out for anything. We have the gym, therapy, restaurant, laundry… everything.”
The Kohinoor Mall, it bears repeating, is designed to meet all shopping needs. In the restaurant, Fast Plate, menu is continental dishes, with an African fusion, designed to cater to the different palates of diverse clientele.
The lounge is designed accommodate at least 200 people, with the offering of a private room that can take about 40 people. This is for meetings, birthday parties and bridal/baby showers, or just an escape.
The Kohinoor Bar is manned by a set of skilled Mixologists who produce an assortment of drinks. It has, too, a smoking lounge offering cigars and shisha.
Dubbed the Friendly Store, the Madiba Mart is an upscale supermarket that offers a wide selection of products sourced both locally and internationally.
Èlèrán (Meat Shop) is the local butcher, located on the Madiba Mart shop floor. On offer are fresh & hygienically kept meat – chicken, beef, goat, oxtail and so on. Òja (Farm Fresh) provides steady supply of fresh fruits and vegetables. The store also has the option of sourcing other local items on request.
Zara’s Treats is a haven for ice cream, gelato, cupcakes, pies, sandwiches. It also produces breads and pizza. Coffee 4 2 provides signature coffee blends. Oh! My Grill is the home for suya, shawarma, grilled fish, grilled chicken, beef kebabs and accompaniments.
Med Square Pharmacy offers a wide selection of both over-the-counter and prescription pharmaceutical products, with in-house pharmacists that offer professional consultative services.
WorkZone offers work space, inclusive of high speed internet, to upwardly mobile business owners and young professionals.
Jack & Jill is a food stand, specifically for the children, with treats like candy floss, corndog, popcorn, ice cream, hotdog, burgers etc.
Cut ‘n’ Sip is the executive hair salon and nail studio, where customers get complimentary glass of wine to sip while they wait for their turn to be attended to.
We regret the error communicated in this story, where we mis-reported that the Chief Executive Officer and Managing Director of GMO Group, Dr. Collins Chike Chikeluba is still a non-Executive Director in the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN). Dr. Chikeluba has since served out his term with the apex bank as a non-Executive Director.
We regret the mis-information.