Baking business is one of the most profiting businesses for young people in Nigeria. It ranges from making bread, cake, doughnuts, etc. It appears easy to start up, but not easy to maintain and make a fortune. In this interview, we bring to you a young baker who has moved from a life of dependent on the parents to a financially independent business guru. Join me as I introduce to you Victory Stephen Ibeenezim.
PROFILE: Name: Victory Stephen Ibenezim, A 400L student of Human Physiology a native of Rivers State, born and raised in Anambra State. I am also the C.E.O of La Vee Cakes and Culinary.
LBC CREW: How did you conceive this vision?
SUPER-BAKER: From the time when I was born, until now, age 6 or 7 my mum who was a teacher, was also a baker. She did that as a side job especially during weddings, graduations, events in school and during Christmas. I learnt from her by observation and bake my first cake in SS1. At SS2, I made my first fondant cake. Fondant cake is hard to make, I had some difficulties, so I put a call across to my sister who was in Ghana, and she put me through with the necessary steps.
LBC CREW: (Cuts In): Why did you have to call your sister when mum was equal to the task.
SUPER-BAKER: Well, fondant wasn’t trendy as at that time the way it is now, the popular decoration for cake as at that time was butter and royal icing. Fondant icing now replaces royal icing that was done in these days cut its trendy and mum didn’t do much of it.
LBC CREW: How come, everything came out fine as a learner the first time you tried because unlike other bakers, they make several mistakes before getting it right.
SUPER-BAKER: well, I want to believe it was a gift from God and I now, it was beyond just taking a cake to school, it became something I loved doing. I really don’t know why case was positively different as regards getting it right at first trial.
LBC CREW: Wow! This is nice. So tell us about how the secondary school baker boy continued with this in University (laughs).
SUPER-BAKER: (Giggles). On getting to the University of Uyo, that was during my first year and even year two first semester, nobody knew about my baking skills. It was until my year two second semester that I began making business from baking. I had to sit down and craft a name for myself, like a brand name and my very first business name was created; La Vee Cakes & Confectionery. I went further to create a facebook page. I went further to learn certain things that would help the publicity of my business like graphic designing because I need to create flyers, so I was doing the whole thing on my phone by downloading the needed app from goggle play. I did not have a laptop as at that time and graphic designing skills. I officially started my business in 2017. Another strategy for publicity I did was baking cupcakes and glaze doughnut (Note that I didn’t bake cake alone, I also did pastries).
LBC CREW: So did you get much orders at this point?
SUPER-BAKER: Well, orders were not really coming. It was basically my friends and also family members, like my little cousin, whom I baked so it didn’t start like boom, it was a gradual process.
LBC CREW: Wow! So why did you change your brand name from La Vee Cakes and Confectionary to La Vee Cakes and culinary.
SUPER-BAKER: This was also a way to advertise myself better, not to give people restrictions that I only did confectioneries and cakes, culinary services goes beyond baking it involves cooking, good presentation of food too.
LBC CREW: Have you ever experienced any heart break in this field, like a cake you wanted to deliver got burnt, a customer rejected you offered of any other misfortune.
SUPER-BAKER: (smiles): Yes I have, that was at 2018, when I registered for a cake competition called cake MANIA: a contest for young aspiring bakers in Uyo. I registered and that was the very first time the show started in Uyo. I registered for this to enhance visibility. I worked hard. Most times at night, I wake up, get fondant and try to do something with it and master the process and when the expected day came for the competition to hold, it held at emerald event centre and I have never stood in such a great crowd before, we had to compete right on stage with over 1,500 audience. The first price was about 100,000 thousand, a mixer and stuffs like that, and it was organized in such a way that the first stage was for butter cream method of cake decoration, and the second for fondant decoration. The major heartbreak here was that I was disqualified from the competition because I used fondant on my butter cream cake. I was not aware of this rule. I wept at some point and moved on.
LBC CREW: So you kept pushing after this. How?
SUPER-BAKER: Yea! I made publicity on facebook to move the business forward. I also made some business cards for offline publicity. As at my final year, the business started waxing stronger. I started training people. La Vee cakes and culinary is going to be a bigger brand.
LBC CREW: Do you have a specific cake specialty No, I make birthday, anniversary, wedding cakes and even pastries. I don’t these local pastries. Mine is classic like glazed doughnut, samosa, spring rolls, pizza etc.
LBC CREW: what was your motivation, I believed you had a force that made you do this.
SUPER-BAKER: Well, the very first thing I would love to say here is that I’m a hustler, I love things that bring money, I love baking too, I never started for the purpose of making money but something that should be done on my birthday, then was I discovered that I could do this well for myself, I had to think of doing it for other people to get my pay. Another drive is that I wouldn’t want to stress my mum, call her every time asking for money, so I decided to start making my own business to sort out my financial needs.
LBC CREW: What’s your advice to the people out there.SUPER-BAKER: Well, my advice is that you don’t need everything or everyone to start up something, what really helped was the drive to add value. So to my readers and listeners out there, it’s time to get up and work towards your drive not necessarily for money at first, but your passion, and dedication will bring the money. I can now pay my bills without any parental support.
You can well read a related article on how to profit from baking business on https://www.lifebeyondcertificate.com/how-to-profit-from-photography-business/
You can as well read the article on starting a campus business on https://www.lifebeyondcertificate.com/how-to-start-a-lucrative-campus-business/