By Ingram Osigwe
The popular cliché, ‘first impression sticks’ is not applicable to Chief (Sir) Daniel Chukwudozie.If you profile and categorize him based on the spur of the moment kind of judgment, then you have done so using the wrong barometer and faulty premise. This is because at first encounter, you are confronted with a man you could pass for a middle income earner. He wears no airs and there are none around him. He is as simple as air itself. The calm ambience he exudes is just natural. He is just being himself.
However, many would be shocked to later learn that this unassuming Youngman who mingles with the lowly and the downtrodden without discrimination is workaholic, a business czar, corporate tiger and sits atop multi-billion dollars investments spanning several interests. Chukwudozie is a tested industrialist and an achiever-a job creator, an employer of labour and a philanthropist. And he makes no noise about these.
The mark he has made in the Oil and Gas sector is indelible and his contributions to the economic growth of his fatherland undeniable. This is why Chief (Sir)Daniel Chukwudozie,Chairman of Dozzy Oil and Gas will be the cynosure of all eyes on Saturday 11th march 2017,at the University of Calabar as he stands shoulder high to be honoured by that respected citadel of learning.
The University of Calabar is conferring an Honorary Doctorate Degree on him. And all roads leads to that beautiful city as Chukwudozie’s friends, well-wishers and business partners empty there to celebrate a man who they say is a source of inspiration to budding entrepreneurs.
The institution’s decision to honour Chukwudozie confirms that his recent award of The Authority Icon by Authority Newspaper was well deserved. Essentially, besides The Authority Icon award and today’s conferment on Chukwudozie, the Oil and Gas magnet has the Industrialist of the year award from Grassroots Newspapers Publishers Association, the most respected Nigerian CEO award (2010) by This Day Newspaper among others, in his kitty.
Chukwudozie’s rise to the top was not a one-step movement. It was a humble beginning for a humble man. The inter play of factors that would established him as one of Nigeria’s reputable captains of industry shaped Chukwudozie’s principle and philosophy of life and business-humility, honesty and hard work. His unassuming nature and infectious humility explain why he does not trumpet his numerous philanthropist gestures. One these philanthropist acts was the construction and handover of a magnificent three storey school building to St. James Anglican Church, Awada, Onitsha.
Having lost his father at a young age, vicissitude and obfuscation became the family’s companion as his poor mother toiled to raise him and his siblings. But the young Chukwudozie would not allow poverty to limit him. He thus forcefully brushed aside vagaries of life to embrace hard work, and then reaped subsequent strings success in the business arena. Starting off as a trader in 1982, through the dint of hard work and resilience, Chukwudozie nurtured and expanded his trade, transforming it into a limited liability company under the name, Dozzy Nigeria Limited.
At inception the nascent company was concerned only with the importation of belt and general goods from Europe and Asia. A shrewd businessman, Chukwudozie later diversified leading to Dozzy becoming a conglomerate with subsidiaries-Specialty Oil Company Nigeria Limited, Dozzy Plastic Industries Limited, Dozzy Oil and Gas Limited, Guttroff Gas Limited.
The Dozzy Group is also into Lubricant, Oxygen and industrial gas production, industrial automotive, household as well as high precision plastic products, wigs/artificial hair attachment production among others. The Dozzy conglomerate also has interest in Real Estate, Logistics and hospitality.
The Oil and Gas sector of the Group came on stream in 1994 with the incorporation of Dozzy Oil and Gas. The sector has grown to become the Group’s flagship. Dozzy Oil and Gas operation is anchored on four areas: Blending, distribution, industrial Gas and Liquefied petroleum Gas. Dozzy Oil and Gas depots are well entrenched in Nigeria’s three strategic, main port cities of Lagos, Port Harcourt and Calabar. Dozzy Oil and Gas is determined to meet Nigeria’s energy needs and this why the company’s combined capacity of oil storage will be 200,000 metric tons when fully installed.
Chukwudozie enthuses about his company’s success story: “It takes a serious patriotic group in the present circumstances to build a petroleum product storage depot that is capable of handling 120 million liters of assorted petroleum products at once. We are happy the facility which we built in Calabar has helped to address the attendant high prices of petroleum products in most of the South south, South east and parts of Northern Nigeria”
Dozzy Oil and Gas’ sister company, Specialty Oil, is into blending of base oil into different brands. With a state of the art and fully installed blending plant at Onitsha, Anambra state, the company has the capacity to blend 48 million litres of oil on continuous shift production roster.
Chukwudozie exudes patriotic fervor. Having tasted poverty and deprivation, the Dozzy Group boss goes about doing good-putting smiles on the faces of his fellow country men and women through philanthropist gestures and job creation. For example, he has over 300 skilled and unskilled combined workforces on his payroll in Dozzy Oil and Gas. The combined total workforce of the conglomerate stands at about 2,000.
Chukwudozie believes that mentoring culture, suitable team, unique and reliable product and service delivery channels, conformity of product and service with international and national standard policy of giving back to the host communities and the society result in business success as well as impacts on society”
Married to Lady Ada Chukwudozie, a Chemical Engineer and a publisher, the Dozzy Group boss hails from Okija in Ihiala Local Government Area of Anambra State.Chukwudozie is one of illustrious sons of Okija that have put the community on world map by executing many high profile people-oriented infrastructural projects.
The Chukwudozies, though super rich, are not slaves to wealth. Rather, as devout Christians, they put God first in everything they do. They are of the view that each individual, including the rich could encounter problem money cannot solve but God has all solutions to all problems.
Chukwudozie the gold fish has no hiding place hence the University of Calabar easily spotted him and earmarked him for honour. As he stands before a sea of academics, family members, friends and well-wishers to receive honorary academic laurel tomorrow, many agree that for a man with a large, kind and generous heart; a silent achiever and a blessing to humanity, his community, Okija and fatherland, Nigeria, the conferment of Honorary Doctorate Degree (Honouris Causa) is a fitting recognition.
Ingram Osigwe, MD of Fullpage international communications ltd wrote from Lagos.