After working abroad and soaking up café culture, Ngozi and Chijioke Dozie opened Café Neo in 2012 in Lagos, and now have 10 locations in Nigeria with plans to rapidly expand over the next few years across Africa.
The duo have tapped into a $98 billion global industry, that has many fans in Nigeria but little choice of coffee shops, say the brothers. It took them four years to raise $400,000 and get their business off the ground.
A space for entrepreneurs to flourish
What’s unique about Café Neo? The brothers wanted their shop to be about more than just drinking coffee, they wanted to create a space for entrepreneurs and creatives to flourish. They do this by offering free Wi-Fi, jazz music that plays in the background and spaces for collaborative work.
“Café Neo is inspiring a lot of entrepreneurship and entrepreneurs in Nigeria, and hopefully, in other parts of Africa.” says Ngozi. “We host hackathons, we host competitions. As we grow, there are more opportunities for people to come, work, collaborate, and the more opportunities for others to actually plug into Neo.”
“I can’t think of a better place for an entrepreneur right now than in Nigeria,” explains Ngozi.“There’s definitely a coffee renaissance taking place in Africa, and we think that we are at the forefront.”