Meet Babajide Ipaye; serial entrepreneur, technologist and Founder of Keexs - Saga Gist - Top Source for Nigeria News


Wednesday, June 26

Meet Babajide Ipaye; serial entrepreneur, technologist and Founder of Keexs

Babajide Ipaye is a dynamic, results-driven Nigerian Social Entrepreneur, CEO and Founder of Keexs, an Africa inspired footwear brand based in Lagos Nigeria.  The brand is the first of its kind in Nigeria and Africa.

The footwear brand is an Africa inspired range of casual footwear aimed at bringing out the best and making the users feel cool.  The footwear is for all classes of people with unique styles, ranging from flip-flops, sandals and sneakers.

Keexs is a profit social enterprise that donates 10 percent of its profits towards poverty alleviation initiatives in the country.

The microbiologist-turned-entrepreneur Babajide Ipaye started making good-looking shoes to fit his size 48 feet but decided to create them for others as well.

Selling shoes was probably the last thing Babajide Ipaye, a microbiology graduate, envisioned doing. But when by the age of 10, he was already wearing his father’s shoes, a size 44, he knew that some day that he would step in that world.

The only child of his parents, who passed away in a car accident when he was only 11, Ipaye was raised by his grandparents and extended family members who shaped the early years of his life.

Babajide Ipaye (popularly called Jide Ipaye) attended the Federal Government College, Ijanikin.

Mr. Ipaye obtained his Bachelor of Science Degree in Microbiology from the University of Lagos and thereafter completed his mandatory National Youth Service Corps as a Bio-Engineer.

With over 14 years’ experience in technology, consulting and strategy, Jide has been involved in 3 start-up companies, one of which he is currently running.

Due to the challenges of finding the right and perfect footwear of his size and feel, he elected to learn and make his own shoes and then started making shoes for profit.

Jide Ipaye’s desire drove him to become an alumnus of SLEM Innovation and Training Institute for Footwear and Leather Related Industries located in Waalwijk – Netherlands, where he learnt how to make shoes.

He is also a product of the Tony Elumelu Foundation Entrepreneurship program.

In Jide’s professional life, he has assumed roles in the information and technology space, ranging from IT Engineer, Consultant and Information analyst at various companies in Nigeria.

Babajide Ipaye is the co-founder and founder of Torque Technology limited, Business Minds and a Private technology company. These are some of affiliated technology service initiatives.

Mr. Ipaye founded Keexs in 2015 after completing his SLEM education. He plans to build an ultra-modern footwear manufacturing company in Nigeria to help alleviate poverty and generate job opportunities.

Keexs is an African inspired footwear brand, a profit social enterprise that gives 10% of its profit in the alleviation of poverty in Nigeria.

Babajide Ipaye continues to develop himself and has received various certifications such as Cisco Certified Network Associate, Certified Fibre Optic Technician, Dell Certified Systems Engineer and Microsoft Certified Systems Engineer.

He was awarded with the Award for Innovative Entrepreneurship from Paragon Award for Excellence and accolades for his social enterprise.

In just over two years Ipaye has managed to grow the business through leading e-commerce sites like Jumia and Konga as well as via its own website which receives orders from countries around the world. The shoes sell for anywhere from $40 to $60, with over 8,000 pairs of shoes sold till date.

Keexs has about 18 outlets in Nigeria with retail partners in Kenya, South Africa and Guadeloupe and Nairobi.

The company also sells through social media channels where they boast over 15,000 followers on Instagram. The long-term goal for Ipaye is to secure enough funding to set up a factory in Nigeria, which he is looking to raise through an amalgamation of funding sources including grants and loans.