Quintessentially Nigeria Limited prides itself as Nigeria’s only seven-star concierge services provider. Its managing director, Thelma Adaeze Okonkwo, highlights the values that shape the company’s vision. She spoke with Lanre Odukoya
What does Quintessentially really do?
Quintessentially is what I call the ultimate intervention for the business executive; for this high profile individual, for this celebrity that has a tight itinerary, this person that has a personal struggle of trying to balance hard work and living. Quintessentially has always tried to be the ultimate service provider and conveniences support system, to make sure that everything about every aspect of your life is run seamlessly. It means that we run bespoke errands for you, centred at giving this individual, a virtual taste of the world. Whether you are travelling for holiday, for business, whatever the interest for which you are travelling, Quintessentially will be on hand to help you ease into the environment as if you are a local.
In the consortium, we have over 960 businesses that have been developed over 10 years, targeting these different aspects of your life which is mainly your health, your business, your family and you as an individual. Because when you have things going well in these aspects of your life, you will automatically have a balanced life. Let me give you an insight into the kind of requests that we get from clients: somebody calls you and he says, “my wife is pregnant and she is craving Don King’s doughnuts, and she wants it to be flown in from the UK in the next 24 hours”.
So Quintessentially is that company that caters for you from the most important aspect of your needs to the most mundane whim, because we believe that you have worked so hard and being able to access anything that is inaccessible, should not be a problem, as long as you have a company like Quintessentially that you can leverage on. Quintessentially as a business gives you that networking platform where you can travel globally and network with people of like minds, and promote your business and get your commendation. So it is the business of informed delegation, because we know that when you know how to delegate your logistical headache to people, you automatically clear your cache. For corporate organizations, we advise them to give this beautiful service, to the brains that run their companies, the senior management team, the executives, because when you clear their cache and make sure that all other aspects of their lives are put in order, they will concentrate and put all their energy into their work and increase their level of productivity.
But when they do not have this kind of service, you see them buying into the company’s time and using it to attend to their personal errands and obviously this will take a toll on the productivity rate of the company. So those are the options of collaboration that we offer our corporate organizations.
Then we also create an avenue where you can gift quintessentially to your priority clients. So that means you can use quintessentially as a tool to sustain profitability in your business. Any client that you serve and you now go out of the box to give him a service such that if his wife touches down in Croatia, in Netherlands, in any part of the world, she is bound to have a group of specialists who are specially trained to do this kind of job, take her orders, take her right off the airport and take care of her just as long as she makes that call, you can be sure to retain that client for good. Our unique selling point is that we have all kinds of services in our bouquet, you don’t have different kinds of people running different kinds of errands for you, in which case if anything goes wrong you don’t have a professional body to hold liable, Quintessentially provides that security you need. You want to do your domestic staffing and you want to get people that are professionals, thoroughly verified to chauffer your children, to be your cook, to be your gardener, Quintessentially comes in at every aspect of your life to make sure that life is so much easier.
Who are your target clients at Quintessentially?
Our target clients remain high networth individuals, opinion formers, the celebrities, people that have a tight itinerary, people that find out that 24 hours in a day is not enough for them to achieve their delivery base at work and also have a balanced family life, because it has been a constant struggle to achieve a coveted work-life balance.
How long has the company been here in Nigeria?
It has been three and a half years, but globally, it has been around for the past 13 years and it is still expanding.
What opportunities do you see for Quintessentially in the Nigerian market?
In the Nigerian economy, as well as the global economy, the outsourcing market has become a huge market especially in Africa as an emerging market because you have a situation, where a lot of CEOs do not have to over-function, they do not have to be the jack of all trade and master of none. So what we are saying is outsource these things to specialist people that their level of expertise is targeted towards handling that aspect of your work for you. It will create a lot of job opportunities, if people can actually learn how to do it, and it helps organizations to maximize their profits because now, something like a protocol department in your company, these are the people that take care of travel logistics in your company. If any staff doesn’t get to travel, you must pay them because they are on your payroll. But their services are not required daily. But you can cut the costs by outsourcing it to a company like Quintessentially where you can pay as you go literally.
What was Quintessentially’s objective in supporting the Miss Nigeria pageant?
The business we are in is an image business. So for Miss Nigeria, it is very iconic for you to be singled out as the female ambassador for the most populous black nation on earth. And when you talk of Quintessentially, you are talking about the exquisite, you are talking about an extended level of exposure; the elegant, the informed, the refined taste, so the objective is that on this journey that Miss Nigeria is going to go on, she will have to represent the country in the most quintessential form. We want to pass that on to our youth because she has become ambassador for the country and a lot of our youth look up to her, so her comportment and everything that comes with that office has to be quintessential so that is the sort of thing we like to endorse.