An indigenous footwear firm, YikoDeenFoot Wears Limited, has urged government to introduce a number of intervention measures, aimed at calibrating the footwear industry in order to make it a major contributor in the country’s economy in terms of employment and earnings.
With mass-produced shoes flooding the Nigerian market from all over the world in recent time, there is a need for government to arrest the trend through a deliberate action that would help reposition the leather industry.
According to the firm, if the industry is repositioned, capital flight associated with the importation of foot wears from countries like Taiwan, South Korea, China, Vietnam, India, Indonesia would become a thing of the past.
The Founder and Chief Executive Officer of the company, Atunde Shamsideen Olayinka, argued that indigenous firms such as his that are contributing to economic development and creating employment at a time like this should be encouraged.
Olayinka said his company, with a state of the art factory located in Surulere, is set to give the likes of Lennards, and Footwear and Accessories Manufacturing and Distribution Plc (FAMAD) ‘a run for their money’.
“Since its incorporation 2016, YikoDeen Foot Wears Limited, with its slogan, ‘Keep Africa Walking’, is aimed at ensuring that it produced made in Nigeria shoes that can compete in the global Market at an affordable price. Producing quality foot wears for oil companies, factories, military and paramilitary organisations, are our own way of contributing our quota to the development of the economy and boosting the efficiency and overall productivity of these entities.
“The company boasts of a capacity of 1000 pairs per day. The factory, built to the best acceptable international standard has produced boots for the Nigerian Army, Nigerian Police, ‘Back to School’ shoes for numerous nurseries, primary, and secondary schools. We produce industrial safety shoes for construction and oil and gas companies; and combat/jungle boots & service shoes for the military and paramilitary institutions.
“Just this year, the company manufactured and supplied over 6,000 pairs of shoes and boots to the Nigeria Police and over 2,000 pairs of children school shoes and much more.”
According to him, “most of our designs are signature designs. The level of our creativity will always keep us ahead of our competitors while we don’t joke with the training of our members of staff. They are all experienced and they get the best training, so with that our handmade shoes are one of the best products in Nigeria.”
He also revealed that the raw materials used by the company are sourced locally, giving their products the indigenous feel. Among their achievements in the shoe-manufacturing sector, according to him, was the success in bringing back uniformity in school dressing code, as regards quality guaranteed leather shoes for numerous schools across the country.