July 6, 2017 at 6:53 am #1039515
story by losprince
Mike Adewale was the kind of boss who never mixed his home life with his business life. It wasn’t until I got a dot com break through that I went to his house and met his wife.
It had never bothered me that he never invites any of his employees to his house. To my understanding there was nothing special about a boss who takes his employees as part of his family. It just seemed aberrant to invite your employees to dinner and chew over non work related issues.
Mike Adewale wasn’t that kind. He was strictly the medieval type of boss.
He hunted for the best IT professionals the country can provide and lured them from their working place with high salaries and perks. To loyalist geeks this was disgusting, but to geeks who ventured into Info tech to make a living if not a fortune this was music to the ears. Earning high salaries and perks as an IT guru was rosy aspect of being an IT specialist. But the requirements were sometimes hefty: no office romance, your only companion is your desk and everything on it, deliver before deadline, coming in before opening time and leaving after your supervisors. Though tedious, the money and perks involved made it worth it.
I had been a freelance developer, doing spare time projects and trying my hands on web app startups, getting little or no revenue for my brilliant ideas I had switched to blogging, affiliate marketing, domain flipping and mini importation. As none of these were my passion I had quit and left someone else to run them and tried my hand one more time on developing solutions through mobile apps and desktop soft wares. One of these caught Mike Adewale’s attention.
I remember checking my mail box on that cold Sunday morning on Christmas Eve to see a new message from [email protected]. I was mystified; the name TMN was synonymous with the biggest tech company in Nigeria. Seeing an email from a well-known tech company sitting in my inbox, without further ado I clicked and waited for the usual process of sending to and fro to the web server, the message I saw was brief but enough to get me on my feet.
My cellphone started ringing, I checked the caller id, and it was my close buddy Ken.
Ken and I met at MacDonald University where we both studied, I was a computer science major and he was studying mechanical engineering. We kick started our friendship after sharing similar interest in robotics. Ken and I haven’t spoken to each other in quite some time.
“Hey Ken! Where have you been?” I said.
“Hey buddy it’s a very long story.” came Kens reply.
“Ok where are you now? Want to come play call of duty with a master?” I said jokingly.
“No thanks think I will pass” ken’s voice sounded agitated.
“What’s the matter bro? You are sounding strange.”
“Look Charles I am in serious trouble and I need your assistance”
“What kind of trouble and assistance?” I said knowing what the reply would be like.
“I need cash bro and you know…”
“Not going to happen” I cut him short.
“Pardon” – ken.
“I said No Ken!”
“I don’t need a reason for refusing to give you my money, but here is a few.” I was already clicking on the mail fuming. “I don’t pick money from shrubs, I work hard for it and that’s what you should be doing instead of always asking me for money by the way what do you do with them and what makes you think I owe you a dime! Look Ken… hello hello” the line was dead.
Looking at my computer screen and holding a cup of hot coffee with my left hand I leaned closer to read the email.
Mr. Charles michael, TMN Inc. noticed your new app on play store and would like to make an acquisition, please visit our office at VI to finalize the deal if you are interested. Ps meet with mike adewale the CEO.
I sipped at the Nescafé and deliberated over the message, the phone call with Ken still bothering my mind!
Last I heard TMN was going through innovation block, nothing new to present to the customers.
This was bad news for the company but good news for me. A desperate company would be willing to pay high for a product and a developer would be willing to charge high.
Now I don’t feel certain that the app I developed albeit useful would be of any good use to a company like TMN, but since they were pricing then I was definitely selling.
VI – Victoria Island. The company’s headquarters, my residence
If I stood from my apartment’s window, I could see the company’s logo on the top their building, a yellow background with the circled text ‘TMN’ written on it.
Starring at the last sentence in the message I downed the remaining Nescafe.
This was going to be a huge sale.
My phone vibrated and checked to see who the message was from ‘Ken’
I hastily opened the text which content read; “Back stabber! I can’t believe we are friends, am in serious need of money and you can’t come through for me, you wicked soul am cutting all ties with you! Go to hell I shall pay you back for this, I will deal with you idiot! Your Mother!”
I wasn’t surprised this wasn’t the first time Ken sent such messages when I refuse to give him money, but this one came with a threat. I scoffed at his threat ‘this broke ass couldn’t harm a dead mouse’
Christmas to me was a scam activity so I don’t celebrate, I left the next day to TMN, I was going to make a sale of course!July 6, 2017 at 6:53 am #1039517
Ps meet with Mike Adewale the CEO.
I stood in front of the massive edifice, harmattan altering my delicate skin from its dark tone to white pale, impressed by the structure of the giant office, the finest in the country.
The TMN has had its large share of job seekers; almost everyone who applied was rejected. Last year I had applied for a job there, I didn’t even get an interview.
In a minute or so I would be inside but not for a job, I would be negotiating.
I gingerly approached the entrance and met with the security man, 5 feet tall with broad shoulders he motioned for me to stop.
“Please place all metals in the tray” he spoke with authority and provided a tray into which I dumped every metal on me.
He proceeded to move his wand around my body trying to detect any metal. He didn’t.
He stepped aside and motioned for me to enter inside; I took a deep breath and braced myself. The inner view of the TMN was exotic, filled with busy people. For the company there sure was no dulling moment.
A very beautiful and attractive secretary approached me and motioned for me to follow her; we walked past other employees and arrived at an elevator. She pushed a button and the door slid open taking the lead she entered and on cue I slipped in right after her, the door slid shot.
She pushed a button with the inscription “10”
The elevator s---t roared to life, and we started ascending.
“So who are we visiting on the tenth floor?” I said wryly.
“Mike Adewale.” Came the cold reply.
I knew Adewale, of course, by reputation. I knew he was the CEO at TMN a tech company owned by rich businessmen and had built a wonderful thing out of it. Naturally I was nervous. Naturally I was boldly anticipating the meeting: meeting this guy was quite a feat in the tech eco system.
A few minutes ago I was outside his office, and a few minutes later, I was standing before his desk, looking at his piercing grey eyes.
Adewale was six foot 4, massively built, with a dark complexion, a big mouth resting under broad nostrils, a mouth that seemed to smile little and a pointed chin; A big man, around fifty six, thick around the middle, solid fat. He must work real hard to keep himself in such good condition.
He studied me for maybe ten seconds before he got up and t----t out his hand, the hand shake was knuckle cracking.
“Charles Michael good to see you” he said with a voice that would require rapt attention. I wondered how a small voice could command such a huge empire.
“Good to meet you too” I offered myself a seat; Mike raised a brow not hiding his disgust.
Hey am not here for a job interview.
Something about the meeting with Mike seemed odd, I was in his office with him alone, no executives; we didn’t discuss much and before I knew it Mike was signing a cheque! Mike even asked me to stay and further help develop the app with. He was offering me an employment.
I accepted, but I was only planning on staying for a while.
The app was a “sms blocking app” there is quite a lot of them out there, but I added few extended functions on mine to suit the Nigerian mass. The idea for the app came when on a single day I received 23 messages from a single telecom company’s third party sms short code numbers, it was annoying and wouldn’t stop flooding in. out of disgust I opened my brainstorm, wrote algorithms, designed a user interface and wrote the code. The following week I placed the app on the play store and did a little word of mouth advert. Eventually the app took off, having two hundred thousand download on its first two weeks on the play store thanks to the good hearted moderator of a famous forum who moved the thread about the app to the front page. Reviews about the app were really positive, many users emphasized on the feature of placing all four length numbers that began with “50”, “33”, as irrelevant users also liked that I had already placed some of the annoying short codes on ban.
I had wanted to monetize the app, but I didn’t want to spoil the user experience with ads also Nigerians wouldn’t like the idea of parting with their money; I had created a solution to a problem I didn’t want to create another one.
The popularity and usefulness of the app had gotten me a big deal with “TMN” or so I thought but there was something fishy magazines didn’t call for interviews and I didn’t see the news on blogs, I didn’t bother myself as that wasn’t my business.
On my first week at TMN I met victory, a hot stunning data analyst; brilliant, tall and fair complexioned, I wanted to make advances at her but TMN had a strict no office romance so I befriended victory.
I had barely stayed two months at TMN when Mike Adewale called me into his office and made me an offer I just couldn’t resist.
“Charles do you know why you are here?” he had said scanning my face with piercing grey eyes.
“I’m fired?” I asked wryly. Mike managed a weak smile
“You know one day you will pay for your misbehaviors” the man was actually grinning.
Good thing I can get you to smile Mr. Adewale.
Mike Adewale was a phlegmatic the man hardly smiled.
“Tell me sincerely, do you like working for me?” the question startled me, and for a moment I stared at him. He raised his brow as if to say ‘go on boy, answer the question’
I took a deep breath; brace yourself Mike, you asked for it.
“No” I said briskly.
He seemed neither surprised nor offended by the answer, anyway it’s the truth.
“I figured as much” he stood up now and sat at the table in front of me.
He placed his right arm on my right shoulder leaned closer.
“Charles I called you here to tell you that am leaving TMN” he said looking me in the eye, grinning again. “And am not leaving without taking you”
My head shot up, looking at Mike Adewale with surprise.
“Did I hear you correctly?”
“Yes Charles every word”
I sat up
“You are leaving Tech Mandate the biggest tech company in the country where you have been the CEO for God knows how many years and you are not leaving without me? I rushed the sentence. Mike Adewale nodded stood up from the table and headed back to his seat.
“Look Charles I am tired of working for a bunch of obese individuals, am thinking of starting my own tech startup” he winked.
“I get that point, its okay if you want to leave but I don’t understand why you won’t leave unless you took me”
“I was getting to that Mr. Michael but before we proceed I would like to know your net worth”
There was only one logical explanation for that question; I didn’t want to even think about it.
I drew a deep breath, brace yourself again Mike this one is huge.
“One million” I said.
Mike was grinning again.
“One million, in dollar or naira?” he said
Thanks to Google AdSense, Affiliate marketing and domain flipping and other chains of dot businesses. Living the dot com live for so long had paid off, hard work and perseverance they say is a virtue.
I quickly told him about my dot com endeavors.
“That’s huge, what do you say Charles, be my partner, co-founder.” Mike looked at me for ten seconds, satisfied with my surprised expression. Walked to his fridge and brought out two whiskey glasses and a whiskey, he poured to the first quarter of each and handed me one.
“What do you say Charles? You and me partners co-founders.” He took a sip.
I chuckled, eying the glass. “Well Mr. Mike let’s say I can’t refuse a pacesetter.” I emptied my whiskey and Mike smirked.
Mike beamed. “I knew you had the fire son!”
Throughout that day Mike and I discussed about our future company, what to produce, where to base, when to start, shares. Mike was willing to invest four million into the new start up for a start and so I decided to part with all my millions.
I jokingly came up with a name for the startup “LOG – Love of Gadgets” and Mike liked it. I knew he was playing fair, it would definitely be changed to something better.
We decided not to only base on software but also hardware, the first of its kind in the country. Subsequently, one week later Mike invited me to his house for a meeting with investors. And everything changed.July 6, 2017 at 6:54 am #1039519July 6, 2017 at 7:16 am #1039521MhistajhayMember
Where is the link ooo! PleaseJuly 6, 2017 at 9:27 am #1039570Etz d’bramoMember
more…July 6, 2017 at 9:39 am #1039575bhorllyqueenMember
More pleaseJuly 6, 2017 at 10:36 am #1039583KinqsleyMember
This story will b interestingJuly 6, 2017 at 12:17 pm #1039606σиєαℓ32Member
u met his wife