Ademola Ogunbanjo comes from a long line of Ijebu Aristocracy of Odo Botu, Ijebu-Igbo. He was born on a stormy Friday night in Ibadan on the 12th of July, 1974 to the family of Mr. Isaac Aderounmu and Felicia Oluwakemi Ogunbanjo. As a result of the restriction of movement during the Agbekoya war, Ademola was born at home, and taken to the hospital the next morning.
Mr. Isaac Aderounmu Ogunbanjo was a military man who fought on the side of the British Army in Burma during World War II. He went on to become the Secretary General of Ex-Service men, SouthWest region, an active member of the Action Group Party, and close associate of Chief Obafemi Awolowo. This could be traced as what may have later influenced Ademola’s passion for social development and matters of the State.
As a child, Ademola attended Adeeko Memorial Nursery & Primary School, Ijebu-Igbo and Army Children School, Yaba. During his time in Lagos, Ademola exhibited a significant level of youthful exuberance and strong desire to explore beyond his perimeter of safety and comfort. This resulted in him absconding from home, and for a three month period, he worked as a bus conductor while becoming acquainted with the idiosyncrasies of the streets of Lagos. He was eventually found by a neighbour and forced back home, returning to Ijebu shortly after.
He then completed his primary education at St. Joseph’s Catholic Primary School, Obada, Ijebu-Igbo, where he was appointed Head Boy.Ademola attended Abusi Odumare Academy, Ijebu-Igbo for his secondary school education. As a student, he worked part time at the LAT Sawmill to enable him pay for his books, school uniforms and other expenses. This resulted in Ademola developing a strong work ethic, sense of responsibility and drive to succeed at a relatively young age. As his school shared the same campus with the Ogun State University (now Olabisi Onabanjo University), Ademola was exposed to and admired the sophistication of the university students he saw on campus, an experience that has shaped his sense of style since.
As a true son of Ijebuland, his first language was Yoruba. He however learnt his impeccable command of the English language by diligently watching Western programs on television, studying the dictionary, and perhaps through his paternal genes, as his father, Mr. Isaac Aderounmu Ogunbanjo was also known as English Oguns; a nickname derived from his flawless command of the language. Ademola would often seize the opportunity to practice and perfect all he had learnt, whenever he visited Lagos on holiday.
He briefly attended Delta State University, Abraka for less than a semester, and later moved to the Obafemi Awolowo University, Ile-Ife, where he graduated with a B.Sc. in Urban and Regional Planning. While an undergraduate, Ademola’s hard working nature came into play once again as he took up a job as a Taxi driver to earn money for his upkeep, in a bid to help augment the efforts of his older siblings who were paying his fees. From his savings, he eventually ventured into entrepreneurship by founding The Closet, a clothing retail store in Bodija, Ibadan which exists to this day.
Ademola is a scholar of the Said Business School, University of Oxford and HEC Business School, Paris where he studied Consulting and Coaching for Change. He trained as a consultant at Oxford Management Consulting, UK, and is a member of the Institute of Management Consultants, and a SEC-certified Market Analyst, with an Executive Masters Certificate in Project Management from the PM College, London.
After a brief stint with MTN Nigeria in Lagos, Ademola moved to Ibadan where he joined the National Bank of Nigeria as a Bulk Cash Teller, he rose quickly through the ranks and had been appointed Regional Retail Manager, South West by the time he left the organization in 2005.
He returned to Lagos in April 2005 to join Vmobile Nigeria’s (now known as Airtel Nigeria Limited) Corporate & SME Segments team.Ademola would go on to join Ocean and Oil Holdings in March 2007 as Manager, Energy Investments. He later co-pioneered the start-up of a new subsidiary, Avaizon Consulting Limited, a Strategy, Execution Management and Business Performance Coaching firm he headed as Chief Executive Officer from 2010 to 2013, having previously served as Vice President, Strategy and Execution Management for two years.
As a strategy consultant of repute, Ademola has enjoyed a varied and successful career across organizations and industries including Banking, Telecommunications and Oil & Gas, with clients within and outside Nigeria.
Ademola has provided free knowledge resource to NGOs like The Fate Foundation, Incubator Africa, Designing Futures, The Oando Foundation, and Fela Durotoye’s AddVantage Series. He is the Vice Chairman of the Lagos State Vocational and Technical Education Board’s Industry Advisory Team.
As an advocate of the Social Entrepreneurship concept for poverty eradication and economic development, Ademola has worked with the First Bank of Nigeria Plc. and Professor Muhammad Yunus to bring thought leadership in micro-financing as a poverty eradication tool to Nigeria.
He currently serves as an Executive Council member and GM, Business Support Group at an indigenous $2 billion E&P company, with its head office in Lagos, Nigeria.
Ademola is a loving father of three- two daughters and a son, and a believer in the Christian faith.