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At U.S. Business forum, Olopade seeks solutions to Africa’s sports problems

Bukola Olopade

A business forum involving top executive officers of sports management firms globally has ended in the United States, with the Chief Executive Officer of Nilayo Sports Management, Bukola Olopade, emphasising the need to address critical infrastructure gaps such as stadium facilities, transportation networks and hospitality services for Africa to unlock new avenues for economic growth and job creation.

The event, tagged OLIN Africa Business Forum 2024, ended on March 29 at Washington University, St Louis, Missouri.

Olopade said that the success of sports events hinges upon robust infrastructure and logistical capabilities.

In his keynote address titled: ‘Beyond Boundaries, Exploiting the Evolution and Opportunities of Sports Business in Africa,’ Olopade stated that while challenges persist, particularly in the realm of infrastructure development, they also present opportunities for investment and innovation.

“Through public-private partnerships and strategic investments, we can lay the groundwork for sustainable sports ecosystems that foster entrepreneurship, talent development, and international collaboration.

“My journey in sports cuts across both public and private sectors. I began as a Special Adviser to the then Governor of Ogun State, Otunba Gbenga Daniel. It was during this tenure that I became intimately involved in the intricate world of sports administration.”

“My subsequent appointment as Commissioner for Youth and Sports marked a pivotal moment in my career, as it allowed me to spearhead initiatives such as hosting the Gateway Games 2006, which is Nigeria’s biennial Sports festival. This edition, which was the first since its inception in 1973 to declare a profit, served as a profound realisation of