Future in Organic produce: Interview with Blazee Brian Omoke

Blaze BYOB has been nothing but an answered prayer to the youth. Safaricom through Blaze brings like-minded youth who want nothing but greatness.
Brian Omoke is among the youth Blaze has surpassed normal risks and invested in their dream to be more. Brian’s unique business idea was an express ticket to Blaze BYOB show. Brian is the CEO of Think Organic Business Company. He is determined, focused and a passionate individual. He is ardent about organic products fulfilling several sustainable development goal.
Brian displayed exceptional leadership skills in episode 2, despite him being the second evictee. I got a chance to get an enlightening interview from him about his experience while on the show.
Incase you missed the episode, you can watch here.
1. Tell us about your entrepreneurship journey before the Blaze BYOB show?
I would say my entrepreneurship journey began way back during my primary school days when my grandparents would give me agricultural products such as avocados, sugarcane, bananas and then after school I would sell them and the profit I made, I would put it in my pocket.
But my ultimate entrepreneurship turnaround happened in late 2015 when I got discontinued from university and now my attitude changed from an employee mindset to an entrepreneur mindset. And now I was compelled to coming up with something that would change lives and that’s when organic agriculture came to my life and I fell in love with it on first sight through its core values and what it’s based on! And that’s how Think Organic Kenya was born.
2. Tell us about your experience in BLAZE BYOB?
The blaze experience is the kind of experience that can’t be bought or found anywhere. It’s one of its kind, it has enabled me to meet 11 other amazing contestants from different fields who have shared their plans and visions of what they want to achieve in life and I must say they are mind blowing! In the process my visions and dreams have also been expanded, funny enough, if you listen to every single contestant’s story, they are all similar and that must say something about all of us.
Before I came to the show, I used to think that I think big and different. Wait until I met the mentors and the judges, every single conversation was a ‘wisdom session’ in that I ought to learn something from it. And that transformed my mindset to a whole other level.
3. How does it feel to be on a TV show?
It’s different and exciting especially how your friends and family respond to it, they are usually excited about it. It also changed my mentality towards TV productions and now I appreciate what they do and the much work they put into producing a show behind the scenes. It actually is strange to watch yourself on TV because you are your biggest critique, you watch yourself and you are like; I should have said this, I should have dropped this joke in that conversation, I should have sat this way and in the end you don’t really enjoy the whole experience really. I now understand why some actors don’t watch themselves.
4. Did the eviction come as a surprise?
Absolutely! Due to the fact that I came to the show with the mindset of coming to take home the 5M grand prize! Nothing less, the fact that I was the second evictee and also felt that I delivered on the task as the group leader. So it was a surprise but very grateful to have been one of the contestants.
5. How did your friends and family react to that?
Well, you know how family and friends are; always very supportive! So they were like we are very proud of you the far that you have come and continue with the same spirit and am sure you will go far. Deep down am sure they expected so much from me of course.
6. For many youths, venturing into agriculture is an alien concept for them, kindly give us insight of the opportunities available in organic Agribusiness 
I am glad actually that the stats are changing towards that notion and more and more youth are starting to get involved in agriculture something that we desperately need right NOW! Organic agriculture is a sector that has always been there but I feel been ignored for a long time and its time we get to talk about it because we really do need it! If you look at the major problems we are facing at the moment, organic agriculture has solutions to every single one of them. If we look at the 17 SDG’s organic agriculture plays a major role in every single one of them; from NO poverty, zero hunger, Good health and wellbeing, clean water, affordable energy, Responsible consumption, climate action, life on water and land.
The organic sector in Kenya is pretty young with huge potential. There is a lot of opportunities from value addition, to marketing, information distribution, policy making to export and import market. So what a you waiting for? Join the movement!
7. How do you think SMEs can get it right when it comes to value addition
In terms of value addition, you have to literally add value and that means comes up with something completely different from what’s on the market and make sure you consider the consumers that you are targeting. That means doing proper research on that.
8. What are some of your greatest takeaways from the show?
Customer experience is key! From the challenges that I was involved; (the matwana and twiga challenge) major key was to ask ourselves that whatever we were doing if it would have sparked an interest from us. Something that am definatly going to take to my business.
Anything is possible! Doing a challenge for 48hrs isn’t easy but the challenges were done. So that showed me that everything and anything is possible. If I have to do anything it has to be NOW!
Team work is key! In every single challenge the team that stuck together always came out on top. So at think organic, that will be top of my agenda. Ensuring we stick together with the vision we have.
9. What opportunities for growth have you received from the BLAZE platform?
Great connections, exposure, partnerships and mindset shift. I have met people who have more knowledge and experience in the area that am involved in. and those are the kind of its hard for someone to come in contact with easily, I have been exposed to real life situations in the challenges and those are definatly growth opportunities that I can’t take for granted. Every single contestant, mentors and judges are all potential partnerships for me and my business something that I can’t take for granted either.
10. What have been some of your failures in running your business, and how do you rise above them in them in the spirit of G.R.I.T?
Monetary has been my major issue in the fact that I have so many projects that as think organic Kenya would like to launch but I can’t due to that. But I have been able to be patient with myself and saved up some cash to enable me to push through this projects and even to talking to my family and friends to support me through this
People to support me through my business has been also a major setback coz I couldn’t guarantee paying anyone of them and the fact that everyone has their own dreams to chase, so convincing someone to work for me for free has been difficult but I have been able to fully explain to some the vision for think organic Kenya and they have accepted to join me.
11. What next now that you are out of the show?
My aspirations is to ensure the vision of think organic Kenya of ‘feeding the world organically’ and the mission of ‘ensuring the availability and affordability of organic products to all people at all times is met. And that is NOT going to be stopped by anything. Think organic Kenya is going to be the one stop destination for all your organic product’s needs, opening up more think organic branches across the major cities in the country, commanding the export and import market and continuing with other organic projects
12. What would you do different if you are taken back to the show?
Nothing really, I believe that everything happens for a reason. And that all I was meant to learn from the show, I did learn it from the short period I was involved. Of course absolutely glad for the chance to be on the show.
13. Who do you think currently has the best shot in winning the final prize?
I would say it’s very difficult for one to predict because you never know really what can happen in this competition, because in every challenge everyone is a different beast! Even when you look on last season, the favorite one to win didn’t win. But if I was to pick the most likely one I would say Mr. Brian Rono
14. What can you say to a young aspiring entrepreneur who doesn’t know where to start?
For me I believe the first secret to archiving anything is to start. Because when you put it into motion, you create the energy necessary to what you are trying to do and automatically people and the money you need to start your project gets attracted to what you are doing! So if you haven’t started already, then get in to it and if you have started then you are definatly in the right track!
Second you should put most of your energy in doing research on what you are engaging in, to truly know what it takes to do what you want to do and know people who are already doing what you are doing to give you some valuable information on what you are doing to avoid doing a lot mistakes and make your path easier.
Then be action oriented and procrastination should be your number one enemy to accelerate your rate of growth in your field and let focus be your best friend.
15. What book do you think every budding entrepreneur should read?
It has to be think and grow rich, I consider it the best book only after the bible. It has some amazing spiritual and practical lessons to steer you towards your path to success. It’s summarized by the quote; “Set your mind on a definite goal and observe how quickly the world stands aside to let you pass.”

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