Leadership Team

CHIEF (DR.) ALEXANDER CHIKA OKAFOR (OON, KSC) GROUP EXECUTIVE CHAIRMAN

Chief (Dr.) Alexander Chika Okafor (OON) is the Executive Chairman and founder of Chicason Group of companies. A native of Umudim, Nnewi, Anambra State, Chief, (Sir), Alexander Chika Okafor started his business as a local trading house in 1980 and graduated in later years into a conglomerate. Today, the Chicason Group, comprising of thirteen vibrant companies, is a high profile, technology-driven, customer oriented conglomerate, conceived to be among the best indigenous groups in Nigeria and Africa, in terms of product quality and service delivery. Its business activity traverses across manufacturing oil & gas, mining, real estate, trading, health care delivery, agriculture and travel management. With increasing commercial exposure outside of Nigeria, the Group aims at strategically growing into a leading Pan-African entity, with a well-diversified portfolio.
An astute businessman of international repute, Dr. Okafor has held various offices in business and social organisations including President, Nnewi Chamber of Commerce as well as Patron, Nigeria – South African Chamber of Commerce. He is also the current Patron, Independent Petroleum Marketers Association of Nigeria.
He is a fellow of many professional bodies including the Institute of Corporate Administration (FICA), Nigerian Institute of Sales Management (FNISM) and Nigeria Society of Chemical Engineers (NSChE). In 2008, the prestigious Nnamdi Azikiwe University, Awka, Anambra State of Nigeria awarded him an Honorary Doctorate Degree in Business Administration.
For his envisioning and actualising a high profiled conglomerate and making a huge economic impact in Nigeria and other African nations, Chief (Dr.) Okafor is a recipient of many national and international awards. He has been awarded the African International Award of Merit and the Paul Harris Award by Rotary International. In 2008, he was conferred the Member of the Order of the Niger (MON) by the Federal Government of Nigeria. He is also a recipient of AUTHORITY Icon Award as the ‘Businessman of the Year 2016’.
He is a visionary, an emphatic leader, a philanthropist and a purpose-driven man.

ARI (ARINDAM) SENGUPTA – GROUP MANAGING DIRECTOR

Ari comes on board from EY Corporate Finance, Dubai with a great wealth of experience in various fields and industries.

He has extensive experience across a multitude of sectors in India, the UK, Nigeria, Kenya, Uganda, South Africa, Ethiopia and the UAE, including Consumer Products, Manufacturing, Financial Services, Broadcasting and Recorded Music. Ari has held senior positions in multi-national companies like EY, Unilever, East India Hotels, EMI/HMV, Hays Plc UK.

Previous positions held include – Executive Director – Emerging Markets M&A (EY Corporate Finance, Dubai), Partner (Emerging Opportunity Consulting, London & Dubai), Business Development Director (Hays Plc, UK), Head of Sales (Synergy Group, UK), Head of Products (HMV/EMI India), Operations Manager (HMV Broadcasting), Product Manager (Unilever Food Service India).

Engaging with stakeholders to conceive deliverable growth strategies, develop successful businesses, structure implementation and roll-out programs across medium sized and family owned businesses has been his forte.

He has advised and engaged with the NHS (UK) and Local Governments in the UK on smart HR solutions and resource management, with SMEs in the UK, Nigeria, South Africa, Kenya, Uganda and Ethiopia on growth strategy across various industry sectors.

ENGR. SIR LINUS O. ILOZUE (KSJI, FNSE, FNSChE, JP) – Executive Advisor (Manufacturing Expansion Projects)

Engr. Linus Oseloka Ilozue is a graduate of Chemical Engineering from the University of Ife now Obafemi Awolowo University (OAU); he also holds an MBA from the University of Port Harcourt and is an Alumnus of Lagos Business School (LBS, CEP9). He is a Fellow of the Nigerian Society of Engineers and the Nigerian Society of Chemical Engineers. He started his career in LBN (now Unilever) in 1978 after his NYSC in the same company and rose to the position of production manager LBN (Aba) in 1985. He joined Chicason Group in 1990 as an Executive Director. Since 2004, till quite recently, Engr. Ilozue had been the Managing Director of Chicason Group (Manufacturing). In that capacity, he oversaw the activities of A-Z Petroleum Products Limited, RIMCO Limited, Promotex Industrial and Chemical Company Limited: He is currently the Executive Advisor, Business Expansion projects.

He is the current President, Nnewi Chamber of Commerce, Industry, Mines and Agriculture after being Deputy President for 2 consecutive terms. He is a member of the following: Nigeria Society of Tribologists; Nigeria Institute of Management and National Technical Committee on Standards for Petroleum Products. He was Chairman Lubricant Marketers Stake Holders Committee under the Standards Organization of Nigeria (SON) and also of Anambra State Petroleum Task Force. He is married to Lady Christy O. Ilozue, a retired Principal of Secondary Schools, and is blessed with God-fearing Children. He is a Knight of St. John International (KSJI).

MR. K. C. CHIGBO - Executive Director (Manufacturing)

Mr. K. C. Chigbo is a motivated and creative player in the manufacturing industry, with over 28years experience. He is a fellow of the Institute of Chartered Accountants of Nigeria (ICAN) and Chartered Institute of Taxation of Nigeria (CITN). His working experience saw him traverse the manufacturing industry and Accounting Professional Practice. He started his accounting professional service with Lancaster Okoro & Co. (Chartered Accountants) in Aba as Audit Senior Officer. He later moved over to Pannel Kerr Forster (Chartered Accountants) in Kaduna where he served for 3 years (1985 – 1987) as Assistant Manager. In July 1989, he joined Ijewere & Co. (Chartered Accountants) as the Resident Manager in charge of Northern Nigeria. Although promoted in December 1989 to become a Partner in recognition of his hard work and expansion of the Northern Business Territory, he resigned with effect from January 1990 to join Emenite Limited (a Manufacturing Company) and member of Etex Group WORLDWIDE, with headquarters in Brussels, Belgium. After holding various management positions, Mr. Chigbo once again moved over to Chicason Group of Companies where he is currently the Executive Director (Manufacturing).
An Alumnus of Manchester Business School, Mr. K. C. Chigbo also holds a Masters Degree (MBA) in Business Administration from the University of Nigeria, Nsukka and also a Higher National Diploma from the Institute of Management and Technology (IMT), Enugu, as well as a Fellowship of the Direct Institute of Marketing of Nigeria (DIMN).
An articulate, confident and hardworking person who relishes in challenges and working under pressure, Mr. Chigbo strives to achieve the highest standard possible at any given task. An open minded, patient, supportive towards other people, K. C. Chigbo possesses an excellent ability to motivate and communicate at all levels, thereby ensuring an excellent working environment for all members of the team to perform at their best. Mr. K. C. Chigbo is married with children, enjoys reading religious books and dancing religious music.

Mr. Dikanna Chika Okafor - Executive Director (Corporate Services)

Mr. Dikanna Okafor is a graduate with a B.Eng (Hons) in Mechanical Engineering from the University of Reading, UK. He started his career with Powerhouse Promotions, Reading, UK, 2004/2005 where he rose through the ranks to become an Assistant Head Marketer with a team of 5 staff reporting to him.

Upon his arrival in Nigeria, he joined Price Waterhouse Coopers (PWC), Nigeria as a consultant in the area of Advisory. In the year 2010 He joined Chicason Group of Companies as a Director, and then later rose to become the Executive Director Corporate Services where he is heading the Other Shared Services. Information Technology and Corporate Affairs Directorates.

Mr. Dikanna Okafor is also the C.E.O. of Dyko Oil and Gas Services Nigeria Limited. He has also attended various courses in Nigeria and Overseas. He is an alumnus of the Lagos Business School (LBS).

ENGR (MRS) PHILIPPA ULASI - Executive Director (Audit & Internal Control)

Engr (Mrs) Philippa Ulasi holds a Bachelor of Engineering Honours Degree (B.Engr Hons) in Mechanical Engineering as well as Masters of Business Administration (MBA) in Financial Management. In the course of her career, she also attended several courses, both locally and abroad. A Chartered Engineer and a seasoned Development/Corporate Banker with several years experience in the Financial Services sector, including NIDB and NBCI (now BOI); she is an experienced Credit/Risk Manager, having headed Risk Management in two top banks (ETB and Bank PHB), rising to the position of Vice President/Chief Credit Officer of Bank PHB. She is quite versatile, with hands-on experience in industrial projects and first –hand interaction with major project financing feats.

She has over twenty three (23) years post graduate experience in diverse areas including Corporate Banking, Relationship Management, Business Development, Inspection(Audit),Banking Operations and Risk Management, before joining Chicason Group of Companies in May 2010, as Executive Director (Controls & Compliance). Engr. (Mrs.) Ulasi is inter alia a corporate member of the Nigerian Society of Engineers as well as a member of the Council for The Regulation of Engineering in Nigeria.

Mr. Uzoma Okoro - Executive Director (Commercials)

Uzoma Okoro has 20 years of banking industry experience working at International Merchant Bank (IMB), Diamond Bank Plc, Bank PHB (now Keystone Bank) and Global Bank Liberia Limited, where he was the Managing Director/CEO. Uzoma specialized in International Banking, SME Banking, Corporate Finance, Project Finance, Credit and Trade Finance. He holds a B.Sc Degree in Economics from the University of Ibadan, Nigeria and an M.Sc degree in Sustainability Management from Columbia University New York, USA.

Alex Ojukwu - Executive Director (Mining and Special Projects)

Mr. Alex Ojukwu has garnered over 25years diverse experience in Banking, M & A, Controls & Audit, Power, Manufacturing, Mining and Marketing. He holds a Bachelors’ Degree ‘’Finance’’ and ‘’MBA’’ in ‘’Business Administration’’ from ‘’Ogun State University’’ and ‘’Federal University of Technology Akure’’ respectively. He also holds Fellowship of Chartered Institute of Bankers of Nigeria “FCIB’’, an alumnus of the Lagos Business School “Pan Atlantic University’’ and a Member of Institute of Risk Management UK. He was Executive Director ‘’Risk Management and Controls’’, Zuma Group {Solid Minerals, Steel, Power and Mining Conglomerate}. He is founder of “Damos Practice Limited’’ {Debt and Risk Management Consultants}. He was also Assistant Vice President in charge of Remedial Asset Management with BankPHB {Keystone Bank Limited}. Since joining Chicason group in 2011, he was for five years, “Managing Director’’ Afro Asia Automobile & Plastic Limited, before assuming current role as Executive Director ‘’Mining and Special Projects in 2016’’.

Chux Adike - (Executive Director)

Chux Adike is the Executive Director in Chairman’s office, assisting the chairman to supervise Business Development, Corporate Planning, Strategy, Offshore business offices and Public sector Projects. He is an experienced business and people Manager, Trained Trainer, a Finance, Investment and strategy specialist. He gained professional expertise climbing the ladder of various performance driven organizations. He possesses over 19 years of working experience spanning Oil and Gas (A-Z Petroleum, Port Harcourt Refinery & NNPC -NETCO), Commercial / Investment Banking (Zenith Bank, Fidelity Bank and Intercontinental Bank), International trading and Business consultancy.

Mr Adike was a Resource person for the Central Bank of Nigeria Learning Centre Lagos Nigeria and also an accredited facilitator the Centre for Management Development (CMD Lagos). He was the Chief Executive Officer of Valid Capital Solution Ltd, a Trading and Investment Consultancy Company and also the Country Representative of EMAX INC South Korea.

Mr. Adike Holds an MSc in Economics, an MBA in Management and a BSc in Engineering. He has attended numerous functional and strategic courses locally and internationally covering: Capital Market Operations, Development & Regulations, International Financial Market Operators, Multilateral Agencies, Money Market Operations, Advanced Risk Management, Enterprise Risk Management and Basel 2, Advanced Credit Analysis, Treasury Management, Corporate Finance, Investment and strategy.

Nayo Ugoh - Group Head (Human Capital Management)

Nayo Ugoh is a strategic Human Resources Practitioner with a comprehensive understanding of Human Resources Management, Organizational changes and resolution of business issues; a self-motivated individual possessing demonstrated leadership skills and thrives under Transformational functions across different business segments. She is an effective communicator at all levels within Organizations and a change Management champion who has effectively championed HR Strategy development and Implementation.
She started her professional career in Customer service/efficiency management before she moved into broadcasting and finally settled for her passion- Human Capital Management. Nayo has worked in the following leadership capacities of Human Resources Management in various Financial and non-Financial Industry services : Head Recruitment & Selection, Head , Resourcing & Man power planning/Development, Head Performance Management, Head Employee& Industrial relations, Group Head HR, Shared Services, Head Business Advisory, Head Talent Management and Group Head Human Resources.
Nayo Ugoh is a Chartered Member of the Chartered Institute of Personnel Development United Kingdom (MCIPD) as well as an Associate of the Chartered Institute of Personnel Management of Nigeria (ACIPM). She holds degrees in English Language & Arts and also International Relations & Strategic Studies. A Certified Talent Economist, Certified Hayes Job evaluator, SHL Certified Assessment Center Design and Assessment Administrator, She is an all-round People Management expert.

Chigozie Okafor – (Group Financial Controller)

Chigozie holds a 1994 second class (upper division) honours bachelor degree in accountancy from the University of Nigeria, Nsukka. He is a as a chartered accountant and also an MBA from the prestigious Lagos Business School.

Chigozie started his career with FBN (Merchant Bankers) Limited, the then merchant banking subsidiary of First Bank of Nigeria Plc from where he joined Access Bank Plc. He left banking after about seven years experience to join Unilever Nigeria Plc as the commercial accountant (Finance Business Partner) in charge of the Home and Personal Care (HPC) division of the business and was to later join Reckitt Benckiser Nigeria Limited, another multinational FMCG company as the Financial Controller in 2008. In the course of his career, Chigozie has been involved in major landmark projects, particularly at Unilever Nigeria Plc and Reckitt Benckiser Nigeria Limited. He joined the Chicason Group in September 2012 as the group head of finance.

Okechukwu (Okey) Uche (LLM; BL; LLB; PG Dip) – (General Counsel &Legal Services)

Okey has 26 years of professional service rendering law, policy and development services to public and business organisations. He is General Counsel and Company Secretary, Chicason Group. He earned a law degree from the University of Calabar in 1990 and was enrolled as a Barrister & Solicitor of the Supreme Court of Nigeria in 1991. In 2007 he received a postgraduate degree (LLM) in Resources Law and Policy from the Centre for Energy, Petroleum and Mineral Law & Policy, University of Dundee, Scotland, United Kingdom (CEPMLP).
A large part of Okey's work has been devoted towards developing critical sectors of the Nigerian economy such as Infrastructure, Consumer Protection and Mining. On Infrastructure: Okey, as Managing Director of Accoplan Development Company Limited, led Accoplan form a consortium with African Finance Corporation and UBA Capital Plc. that subsequently drafted the National Infrastructure Financing Policy for the Central Bank of Nigeria. He also advised the Committee on Works of the Federal House of Representatives on Road Infrastructure and advised the Committee organise the Public Hearing on: The Urgent Need to Address the Near Total Collapse of Federal Roads across the Country; and a Bill for an Act to provide for the Maintenance of Public Infrastructure, and Other Matters, 2011. As co-founder of Conswatch Services Ltd, Okey conceived and wrote the Business Plan for the “Products and Services Monitoring & Registration Programme (ProServe)” for Nigeria’s Consumer Protection Council. At Chicason Group, Okey is responsible for the Group’s legal services across six African countries and multiple sectors including Agriculture, Mining, Manufacturing, Oil & Gas, Real Estate, Trading, and Transport. He has been active in (re)structuring Group and Group companies; arranging equity and debt capital; and negotiating and drafting contracts. His draft 5-Year Strategic Plan for the Group’s legal services is the template for effectively managing legal departments in Nigeria and globally.
For continuous improvement, Okey participates at in development events around the world. Mr. Uche's professional and business memberships have included: Nigerian Bar Association; International Bar Association; Commonwealth Lawyers Association, London, United Kingdom; Prospectors and Developers Association of Canada, Toronto, Canada; Society of Mineral Explorationists, Colorado, USA; Scottish Oil Club, Edinburgh, Scotland. He is married and blessed with children and enjoys music and chess for relaxation.

Rev George A. Abara - Group Head (Sales & Marketing)

Rev. George Abara, M.Sc. (Industrial Sociology) (University of Ibadan), Dip. Th, Dip. BS (University of Ibadan). He has about thirty years work experience cutting across Human Resources Management, Consulting, Training, Research, Banking, and Sales & Marketing across multi-ethnic, multi-cultural work environments.

George worked as Consultant to the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) on Nigeria Economic Empowerment and Development Strategy (NEEDS) and has held Senior Management positions in various organizations. He worked at Standard Trust Bank (STB) as Head of Human Resources and in various positions in Intercontinental Bank Plc, first as Regional Human Resources Manager, Head of Learning & Development and later as Branch Manager, (Retail Banking). He had a stint as Team Lead, Commercial Banking with Access Bank Plc. Prior to joining Banking; he was Senior Consultant/Group Manager with Tom Associates Consulting; Head of Human Resources and Administration at Minaj Group and General Manager, DBN Sports International. He is a member of several professional bodies, (AMNIM, MNITAD, AMNIPR, MNIRA, and CIPM) and currently oversees the Sales & Marketing Directorate of Chicason Group.

Engr. Steve Isitua Obiago - Group Head (Information Technology)

Engr. Steve Isitua Obiago is the Group Head, Information Technology (IT) at CHICASON GROUP, with over 23 years’ experience in the IT sector. Prior to joining the Group in September 2016, he was the Group Head, Information Technology Service Delivery Management at Diamond Bank PLC, where he served a cumulative period of 17 years in various capacities in the Information Technology Division. He was a pioneer staff of the Bank from inception, he has served as the Divisional Head, Central Processing within the Operations & Technology Directorate between 2013 -2014 where his expertise in process automation and re-engineering was highly valuable, he also served as Group Head, Technology Support in the Information Technology Services Division of the Bank between 2010 - 2012, Prior to this he had worked in Standard Trust Bank now United Bank for Africa (UBA), HEIRS Technologies Ltd., and SpaceNet Technologies Ltd. He was part of the pioneer Information Technology specialist in Nigeria who revolutionized online /real time computerization within the IT / Financial Services sector. He also pioneered the deployment of the Cisco Enterprise Contact Center in West Africa.
A Holder of Bachelors of Engineering (B.Engr.) in Computer Engineering from the Enugu State University of Science &Technology, and a Master’s Degree in Criminology (M.Crim) with specialization in Cyber-forensics from the University Of Lagos, he also has a Senior Management Program (SMP) certification from the prestigious Lagos Business School (LBS) of the Pan –African University. Additionally he has a Certification in Information Technology Business Management (ITBM) jointly awarded by MDE Enterprises & Belmont University, Nashville, Tennessee USA, A Chartered Banker (HCIB) and member Nigerian Society of Engineers (NSE). Additionally he is a Member, Institution of Electronics & Technology (MIET) in the United Kingdom (UK), also a Member Institute of Electrical & Electronics Engineers (MIEE).
Mr. Steve Obiago has various certifications in the field of Telecommunications, Data Communications and Networking including, CCNA, CCNP, CRCP, and ITIL. He is has attended several IT and Managerial courses in South Africa, UK, UAE (Dubai), France, Barcelona, the Netherlands and the USA.

Jeffrey Ovian (Group Senior Mining Executive/COO)

Jeffrey has earned more than three decades experience in the solid minerals sector. He has held various, production, financial and executive positions in South Africa, Angola, DRC and Nigeria after earning his Mining Engineering degree from the Colorado School of Mines. In 1985 he passed the South African Mine Managers Certificate of Competency Examination and over the years became both a Portuguese and French speaker.

Sreedharan Srinath - COO AFRO-ASIA AUTOMOBILE

EZEOBELE CHIKE AKACHUKWU - EXECUTIVE ADVISOR (INT'L CEMENT)
ONWUEMELE FRANCIS OSEMEKE - CHIEF OPERATING OFFICER (COO)

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