Wabo the Entrepreneur
Graphics by: Ronit Keswani
This is Wabo, a former student and basketball player at Enderun Colleges, and he has one of the greatest success stories that a student can have. He was known by his team for being a delightful and dedicated individual who cherished his teammates and was a source of enthusiasm despite experiencing many ups and downs.
His missing important free throws that would have given us championships twice after undergoing two knee operations made him feel so defeated and he began to question his ability to continue playing basketball.
He began to lose interest and concentration and attempted to cheat the grind, what I mean by that is he wouldn’t attend training, work out, or play in games his commitment to the team was not as it used to be. He was not holding himself accountable anymore but the basketball coach of Enderun Colleges, Hippolyte “Pipo” Noundou, and Wabo went through a difficult period before he decided to leave and return, but as soon as he did, the Covid 19 outbreak began, which led him to withdraw from his basketball dreams..
Coach Noundou reminded him that “he’s the CEO of his life and I’d support him no matter what,” and to call him to discuss his alternatives and opportunities. Although he didn’t feel ready to begin his entrepreneurial path, Wabo assured him that “the 4 years spent in our school and our program provided him with enough tools to do it.”
He currently goes by the title “The Young CEO” and employs about 42 people in 5 locations selling iPhones. Apart from electronics, he also sells merchandise for his company such as jerseys. He has two companies that he franchises, IPHONE CAMEROUN, which is the No 1 Apple reseller in Cameroon with 5 different stores. His other company is Youyou Beauty, which is a beauty salon in Cameroon that mainly focuses on services such as manicures, pedicures, and decorating of nails. He received the award for “The Best & Most Influential Young Entrepreneur 2022” in Cameroon by the Public Vision Awards, and he embodies all the principles Enderun advocates in our educational program. If one of us succeeds, we all succeed.
Coach Pipo was interviewed for this article about why he decided to help Wabo in his time of need and what he saw in Wabo to do this kind of act. He said “The fact that he went to the same high school as me, and his high school coach, who used to be my coach, told me to give him a chance because all he needed was an opportunity, which I did.” “To be honest I knew Wabo was going to be successful but not this early in his career. His determination, hard work, and Dedication set him up for success. He learned a lot in Enderun and our program but I was still afraid that he would fail when he decided to start his business because I thought he needed a couple of years more to mature enough but he proved me wrong. I called his decision a big gamble but it paid off. I respect him for not being afraid to fail.”
He was also asked what signs showed that Wabo was going through a tough time and was lost, he responded by saying his daily routine, body language, dedication, and work ethic changed.
According to Coach, “Wabo loves to grind and when he started missing training without valid excuses and even when he was attending, his love to be in there wasn’t the same. I then had to confront him and discuss the situation.” Since Coach knew Wabo well, he was able to spot it more easily. Their connection made Coach realize Wabo needed a breather.
Wabo’s story taught us that despite the struggles if you work hard enough, nothing will be able to stop you. As a current student from Enderun Colleges, I think we should take inspiration from Wabo, the Young CEO, because even though he was lost in life and didn’t know what he wanted to do, he made a decision and went from being a basketball player here in Enderun Colleges to a very successful businessman at a young age. And, hopefully, we all have an incredible mentor like Coach Hippolyte “Pipo” Noundou was to Wabo.