By Toluwalope Olugbade
Student-prenuer is an act whereby students organize a business venture and assume much of the associated risk. In Adekunle Ajasin University, Akungba-Akoko(AAUA), Students being an entrepreneur is not a new occurrence as they take the responsibilities of business along with their academic activities.
This involves them risking everything they possess in making sure they succeed both in academics and business, which was described as an uneasy job at all as they experienced a lot of challenges.
In an interview with an AAUAINSIDER correspondent, one of the students-prenuer in the school, Adahuns Jide Reuben, an English Studies student and the CEO, Ceejay Fries, an online food restaurant said, “Being a student and an entrepreneur is not a joke. Especially, being an English Studies Student.”
INSIDER: Hello, Sir. I’m Toluwalope from AAUAINSIDER, a campus media outlet. Can you tell us who you are?
CEEJAY FRIES: I am Adahuns Jide Reuben, CEO CEEJAY FRIES. I am a final year student of English studies.
INSIDER: What is “Ceejay Fries” all about?
CEEJAY FRIES: It’s an online restaurant, we are small now. We do chicken and chips and Ewa Agoyin. Very soon, we are unveiling a new menu.
INSIDER: Are you saying you deliver only chicken and chips and Ewa Agoyin to people who are interested in their respective houses?
CEEJAY FRIES: Yes. You place your order online, you use the money to validate your orders and we bring it to your location.
INSIDER: For how long have you been in this business?
CEEJAY FRIES: 1year, 9 months. We started in January 2020, we started at the roadside, selling yam and potatoes. It was quite rough. Delivery started February 14th, 2020 before corona.
INSIDER: What are the challenges you’ve experienced so far and how have you dealt with those challenges?
CEEJAY FRIES: Being a student and entrepreneur at the same is not a joke. Especially, being an English Studies student. Being in Akungba again, the road, frequent accidents, doesn’t help for delivery. Every time there is an increase in gas, chicken, and commodities, it’s killing. But what can I do?
As for being a student, I had to employ workers, marinate chicken as opposed to the next day. Because of the frequent accidents, I employed a bike man as the delivery personnel. As for the increase in everything, there’s not much I can do there.
INSIDER: How many workers do you have?
CEEJAY FRIES: Four workers, including the delivery person.
INSIDER: What are your goals for this business?
CEEJAY FRIES: Ceejay Fries is not a short-term project. We hope to make it a big name across the country and even beyond.
INSIDER: Where do you prepare the food?
CEEJAY FRIES: My apartment. We have this space we use.
INSIDER: How do you advertise your business?
CEEJAY FRIES: I started in class then, I would stay in front of the class, shout and announce. They called me potato boy then, but now I’m in over 60 groups in AAUA. I contract Kinloshele Media Concept to advertise, as well as Barryfem TV.
They help with the advertisement. We partnered with Dekola’s show and Mofy as well. Over eighty thousand naira was spent on those. Just raise the name and stuff. We partner in some competitions in school as well.
INSIDER: What keeps you moving in this business?
CEEJAY FRIES: First of all, with no hypocrisy, it’s the money. Aside from that, we make people happy. Since we’ve started, chicken and chips and Ewa Agoyin, we haven’t had poor reviews, of course, people correct us, tell us this or that, on the general, we got amazing reviews.
So it keeps us going. In fact, for the fact that we don’t have a physical building yet, we are one of the biggest brands in chicken and chips and Ewa Agoyin in AAUA. The business had also connected me to people that in 100 years, I would never have met. So we can only continue and get better.
INSIDER: How much did you start with when you first started?
CEEJAY FRIES: As I said earlier, we started last January selling yam and potatoes by the roadside. Then, I spent almost fifty thousand, getting a stand, utensils, and so on. Then on February 14th, we did Valentine’s Day sales of just chicken and chips and spent about seven thousand naira.
The sales were just for Valentine’s Day. People loved it and urged me to continue. I continued but we didn’t get many customers before the corona break. When we resumed early this year, I was hoping to start after the exams, but my mentor, Francophone, told me to just start. I had three thousand naira on me then. So I started eating chicken and chips for just three thousand naira.
INSIDER: What advice do you have for entrepreneurs who are just starting?
CEEJAY FRIES: I just started too, but I’m upcoming as well. But patience! It goes a long way. They should just be patient, nothing good starts boom boom. It takes time and turns.
INSIDER: We’ve come to the end of the interview. Thank you for your time and priceless words. We hope that whenever we call you, you will answer us.
CEEJAYk FRIES: Definitely.
INSIDER: All right. Thank you, once again
Omosola Friday Oke , popularly know as Honour-Pen, a student of mass communication department with optimistic of serving the nation and world with the use of pen. A poet, relationship consultant and human right activist.