I spent two days following Sunday around Ibadan. After the second day, i decided to do something different. I had seen Lagos bound buses the previous day and since they were mini buses, i figured out that Lagos would not be far from Ibadan. There were the kind of Buses used in shuttling between Enugu and Onitsha. I made up my mind to go to Lagos the following morning. I had spent two days carrying bundles of money around Mokola, Gbagi and Ojoo in Ibadan without being able to buy anything.
Around 5am that faithful morning, i woke Sunday up and told him about my plans. He tried to discourage me but to no avail. I picked up one bundle of N20,000 and headed to Lagos. I left the remaining money with Sunday in Ibadan. My reason was that it would be too risky to go to that dangerous city with a bag of money. I had heard about ‘one chance’ boys in Lagos and how they snatch people’s belongings.
I can’t remember where the Ibadan bus stopped us. I asked someone where Ladipo spare parts market was located and he directed me to cross one railway and enter a bike. I did and that was how i found myself in Lagos. I asked people where the Peugeot dealers stay since i knew a few of them that usually came down to Onitsha to supply us spare parts. There was no GSM then or maybe i had no phone yet. On getting to the Peugeot line, i saw Izuu..
Izuu happened to share a flat with someone in our building at Onitsha. He was surprised to see me in Lagos and asked what i came to do. I told him i couldnt buy anything in Ibadan and decided to come to lagos.
He was delighted because there was some goods for sale in one warehouse but there was no money. He asked how much money i had and i told him. We went to the warehouse to check on the goods. It was a heap of 505 wagon Back Axels, about 18 pieces of them at N12,000 each. Being a sharp businessman, i quickly discovered that i could get them cheaper since i had cash.. I eventually negotiated my way to a cut price of N10,500.. The goods were sold at N14000 in Onitsha then..
I paid an advance fee of 15000 and told the owner to wait while i go to the bank for the rest. When we got out, i told Izuu that i left my money in Ibadan and that i was going to get it. He took me to a park where i got a bus back to Ibadan. I decided to sleep over in Ibadan and go to Lagos again the following morning.
The following day, i paid up for the goods and loaded them in a luxurious bus down to Onitsha.
The goods arrived at the mgbuka Obosi spare parts market the following morning and i made over N50,000 from my first trip. My elder brother who was furious over my decision to travel without his approval had to relax from then.
I made a few more Lagos trips and got bored with it.
The Cotonou idea and opportunity had emerged.
It was going to be about profit and risk.