Suave, calm and collected defines Sadiq Adams, popularly known as SadiqofLagos, the CEO of Rogues clothing line. A well-read business strategist with degrees in Mass Communication, Marketing and an MBA to booth, Sadiq is a valid specimen of what a Nigerian Youth should be, especially in this era where it is difficult to encounter such learnedness.
In this interview, he tells his story of becoming in a positive tone that threatens to hide even the painful parts of his journey.
“My name is Sadiq Adams. I am from Epe in Lagos State, a graduate of Mass Communication from Lagos State University (LASU), an MBA from University of Lagos (UNILAG) and almost rounding off my second Masters in Marketing in University of Lagos as well. I started my fashion business back in 2008 while in 200 level in University. Then it was just buying and reselling Polos and T-shirts, with time I began adding some designs to it and gradually evolved to my present company, Rogues, which officially kicked off in 2016,” Sadiq noted, when asked to introduce himself.
From a mere clothes distributor, Sadiq rose to a full time fashion designer by demonstrating a dint of hard work, producing his own clothes from plain materials thereby creating a signature with the thoughts in his head about what clothing should look like.
“A lot of people ask me how I came about the name “Rogue”, and I find it difficult to explain because initially, that’s around 2008 and months before I registered the company in 2016, it was just C.E.O my own variation of the popular abbreviation of Chief Executive Officer which I turned to mean Clothing Extra Ordinary. I felt it was too long and I always have people asking me what it means. I needed something punchy, a monosyllabic word that is self explanatory. So, one day, the word “Rogue” came to my mind and I decided to use it, even risking the chances of being thought unserious or unofficial as I may be entering business meetings with some corporate Heads or Companies. But then, I had to move on with it, knowing that it is highly unconventional but slightly controversial enough to give me the needed attention which might also give me the needed break I deserve in the fashion industry.” He further revealed while answering questions on how he came about the name.
On the challenges facing his line of business, he observes that “finance is the major challenge facing fashion in Africa. Fashion is a very serious business that should be heavily invested in if one must get to the point of major big names we look up to. Heavy money is required and that is where I think the government should come in with some policies that would enable those of us in the early stages of our career to cut some breakthroughs.
For instance, if you go to microfinance banks to obtain a loan, the process and interest rates are scary and can discourage any rookie entrepreneur from going any further. Imagine if there are readily and easily accessible means through which one can get a good loan with mid interest rate from government owned Banks of Industries and such other platforms, imagine the kind of doors it’d open for many Nigerian youths whom I know are imbued with the right entrepreneurial skills to challenge any world standard in any line of business.
So your question on whether we think we can compete with the likes of Louis Vuitton, Tommy Hilfiger, Dolce and Gabbana etc, is a strong yes. It’s all about having the right resources and a stable economy. Those guys do not have two heads and are not even more creative than us; they only have an enabling environment and are made more popular by Africans unwholesome love for imported things. But again, we are actually competing with them because we now use the same quality when it comes to fabrics, only that the third party importation system here and forex makes ours more expensive and slow in production”
He also made mention of the electricity palaver in the country which makes him and his likes spend more to purchase fuel for their generators in order to power their machines. According to him, if there were to be constant electricity, most businesses would produce more value than they are currently producing.
For his 2020 vision and beyond, Sadiq aims at coming out with more quality and impressive outfits while also being open to participating in future fashion shows and other outings that concern fashion. He also looks forward to working more with entertainers as stylists and models too, where his brand will be given the publicity that is commensurate with his creativity.
Multi-talented and super skilled, Sadiq encourages more fashion enthusiasts to come into the fashion line, be more open to lessons and hardwork, work closely with older guys and make use of every chance that comes with the business while bracing up for challenges that could be discouraging sometimes.