17 May 1975, Agbor
Igho Charles Sanomi II (born 17 May 1975) is a Nigerian businessman, trained geologist, public speaker and philanthropist. He has business interests in oil, telecommunications, maritime, aviation and real estates.
Igho Sanomi was born in Agbor, Delta State, Nigeria. He is the fifth child (and first son) of a Catholic family. His father, the late Dickens Ogheneruemu Patrick Sanomi, was the second National Vice-President of Urhobo Progress Union (UPU), and a retired Assistant Inspector General of Police (AIG) in the Nigeria Police Force. AIG Dickens Ogheneruemu has been credited in media reports as someone who contributed to sports development in Nigeria. He was also said to be a sportsman in his younger days with active football playing days when he was a student of Urhobo College, Warri, Delta State and “was invited to the junior national camp. He also represented the Nigeria Police Force in the hurdles, triple jump and long jump.” He went into sports administration after his active sporting years and “for upwards of twenty unbroken years, he was involved in sports development in the police.” Credits for the discovery of Nigeria’s first Olympic Gold medalist, Chioma Ajunwa, at the 1996 Summer Olympics in Atlanta have gone to Dickens Sanomi. The Golf Championship of the 2013 Nigeria Police Games was named The Dickens Sanomi Golf Championship to honour the man reported to have “discovered, recruited and nurtured Chioma Ajunwa to become an Olympic Gold medalist by winning the women’s long jump event at the 1996 Games.”
Sanomi Dickens was one of the 46 departed officers of the Nigeria Police honoured for their gallant service to Police through sport.
Igho Sanomi’s mother, Mabel Iyabo Sanomi holds a royal title of Yeye Jemo of Isotun Ijesha Kingdom in Osun State. She was a nurse and medical entrepreneur from Osun State in South Western Nigeria.
Igho Sanomi earned his bachelor’s degree in Geology and Mining at the University of Jos, Plateau State in Nigeria’s Middle Belt. He is from Delta State in the Niger Delta region of Nigeria.
Igho Sanomi has a career path that has taken him across various economic sectors like: telecommunications, shipping, aviation, engineering, construction and real estate investments in Nigeria and beyond.
Igho Sanomi became an Executive Director with Cosmos Oil AG, an international oil trading company with its core business activities in Nigeria in the late 1990s. During this period he developed trading operations for its fuel oil business by negotiating trade transactions for fuel oil exports from the Port Harcourt Refinery, Nigeria. Igho Sanomi went into an alliance with an energy trading company based in Zug Switzerland; this partnership oversaw the importation of millions of ton of refined petroleum products and product exports to and from the West African coast. Sanomi sits either as chairman, Co-chairman or Member of board of directors of various companies, which he either founded or co-founded.
In a bid to merge all his business activities, Igho Sanomi founded Taleveras Group in 2004, a Nigerian energy trading company with a vision and drive to become “a leading Global Energy & Service Company.” The company has offices in London, Geneva, Cape Town, Dubai, Ivory Coast, Abuja and Lagos. According to Forbes, Igho Sanomi’s Taleveras “trades over 100 million barrels of crude oil as well as several million tons of gasoline, LPG and jet fuel. In April 2012, Taleveras acquired production sharing contracts (PSCs) for three offshore oil blocks in Ivory Coast. In June 2013, Taleveras sold a 65% stake in one of its Ivorian offshore upstream projects to Lukoil of Russia for an undisclosed price. Taleveras also owns a stake in a power distribution firm in Nigeria.”
Venture-Africa, a bi-monthly Pan-African business magazine that champions African capitalism, describes Taleveras as “trading close to a billion barrels of crude oil and millions of tons of condensates, gasoline, jet fuel, condensates and LPG every year. Taleveras also owns substantial stakes in two oil blocks in Nigeria as well as lucrative production sharing contracts (PSCs) in three offshore oil blocks in Ivory Coast. The group Power subsidiary constructs electrical substations in Nigeria and recently acquired a majority stake in the Port Harcourt Electricity Distribution Company. Taleveras has an annual turnover of several billions of dollars. Igho Sanomi is the controlling shareholder of the group.”
On 30 July 2013, Sanomi’s Taleveras Group emerged the bidders for Afam Power Plc. Taleveras was among the Nigerian companies reportedly awarded oil lifting contracts, in the Federal Government’s bid, through the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC), to award nearly half of 2012/2013 lifting contracts worth $60 billion to indigenous companies and in the process, promoting local content on one hand and “downsizing contracts awarded to international oil traders.”
In October 2013, Taleveras Group signed a technical agreement with Alstom Group for the rehabilitation and capacity expansion of the 776 megawatts Afam power plant located in Rivers State. Patrick Kron, who is the chairman and Chief Executive (Président-directeur général) of the French engineering conglomerate signed the deal with Taleveras Group on his visit to the President of Nigeria, Dr. Goodluck Jonathan, Nigerian business leaders and members of the international business community in Lagos, Nigeria.
Igho Sanomi exercises his philanthropic gesture through the Dickens Sanomi Foundation (DSF), a charity organisation founded in 2011 by him and his siblings to commemorate the life of their late father, Dickens Sanomi. He is the Foundation’s Board of Trustees’ Chairman. The DSF, funded by Taleveras Group and the Midel Group, currently limits its activities to Nigeria.
Dickens Sanomi national essay writing competition
The Dickens Sanomi Foundation organises an annual essay competition open to all Nigerian secondary school pupils. The national essay competition is in its 4th year (2014 Dickens Sanomi Annual Essay Competition), having been announced on 1 July 2014. Since inception, the competitions have attracted as many as 250 entries from throughout the country, divided between two categories of junior and senior secondary school students. First prize for the winner of each category is a grant towards their school fees. The schools which the winners attend also receives a project grant to spend on facilities such as computer equipment. The foundation is also involved in Strauss musical competition, which promotes musical development in children and competition for adult writers.
Displaced flood victims in bayelsa and delta states
In October 2012, under its Project Rescue 10,000 Flood victims, the Foundation rescued about 12,300 persons displaced by flood which ravaged some communities in Delta State. The group donated food items and relief materials worth millions of naira to the flood victims at camp settlements in Ughelli, Ewu, Arhavwarhien, Orere and Okparabe communities, Ughelli North and South Local Government Areas of Delta State.
In a media report, “the displaced persons were rescued in 500 seater engine and speed boats from communities in Ughelli North, Ughelli South, Patani, Isoko North, Isoko South and Burutu Local Government Areas of Delta State and were subsequently taken to some government designated camps.”. ThisDay’s Society Editor, Lanre Alfred, writes “The Dickens Sanomi Foundation gave out a comprehensive funding package worth over N100 million to flood victims in Delta and Bayelsa State, as part of its intervention programme to mitigate the effects of the devastating flood on the people.”
Igho Sanomi has been reported to have, through the Dickens Sanomi Foundation, pledged a “substantial grant” to Bobby Moore Fund for Cancer Research in UK “to help fund vital prostate cancer research;” a gesture which earned him (Sanomi) the Martin Luther King Legacy Award for Philanthropy. The Foundation also pledged to Save the Children and Oxfam in support of their work. He was appointed advisory board member of the West Africa Book Development Fund. He became the Honorary Chair of the Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. International Salute Committee, taking over from late Ade Adefuye.
Igho Sanomi contributes to the Centre for Education, Research & Conservation of Primates and Nature (CERCOPAN), a non-governmental organisation which “provides education and practical options for the local communities (in South Eastern Nigeria) so that their dependence on the forests becomes sustainable rather than destructive.”
Sanomi made a donation in support of the renowned Dance Theatre of Harlem’s “First Latin American Tour” which was held in Tegucigalpa from January 31 to February 6, 2014. According to a press release on the U.S. Embassy website, “DTH’s trip was also made possible by Igho Charles Sanomi II, Executive Director of Taleveras Group.”
Through his company’s partnership, he is also involved in Global Initiative for Peace, Love and Care (GIPLC), a Non-Governmental Organisation with a mission “to promote sustainable programs and activities that will ensure a better life for the Orphaned and Vulnerable Children (OVC).”
We share in the vision of Delta State in many aspects especially in the area of sports development, were the words of Igho Sanomi while presenting a cheque of Ten Million Naira (N10m) to Delta State Sports Commissioner, Amaju Pinnick, and pledging his support for the maiden edition of Africa Youth Athletics Championships otherwise known as AYAC Warri which took place in 2010. Igho Sanomi’s company, Taleveras Group, was commended by Pinnick for its contribution to Sports.
Sanomi is a Polo enthusiast. His company, Taleveras participated in and sponsored the 2010 and 2011 Kaduna International Polo Tourneys respectively.
Honours and Recognition
Institut Choiseul for International Politics and Geoeconomics, in its first edition of The Choiseul 100 Africa, which was released in September, 2014, ranks Igho Sanomi number one among “growing business leaders, successful entrepreneurs, investors, etc.,” that “embody the dynamism and renewal of a whole continent and carry the hopes of an entire generation.” The list “identifies and ranks the young African leaders of 40 years old and under, who will play a major role in the development of Africa in the near future.” In its latest list of “the Choiseul 100 Africa 2015: Economic Leaders for Tomorrow”, Institut Choiseul for International Politics and Geoeconomics has again ranked Igho Sanomi number one.
Igho Sanomi has been nominated by Nigeria’s Federal Ministry of Industry, Trade and Investment for a place on the new Nigeria-South Africa Business Council.
Igho Sanomi was given an award in the category of Corporate/Friends of the Police Award when the 1st Police Sports Award ceremony was held on 28 February 2014 in Abuja Nigeria.
Igho Sanomi received the Award of Excellence from GIPLC in 2010. Igho Sanomi was profiled by Forbes magazine in 2007 as “one of the new generation of young professionals in Nigeria who are establishing themselves as young leaders of the private sector business community.” He was described in same magazine early in 2013 as one “Ten Young African Millionaires To Watch in 2013.” In 2013, Igho Sanomi was honored by the African Leadership magazine as one of Africa’s top 25 Oil and Gas Leaders of the year.
In 2007, the Federal Capital Territory Business Excellence Awards gave him Male Entrepreneur of the Year award. In the following year, he was awarded Young Entrepreneur of the Year by Mode Men magazine. The same publication gave him Humanitarian of the Year Award in 2012.
Sanomi was a speaker at the Africa Global Business Forum in Dubai in 2014. He is slated to speak at the forum in November, 2015. He is a recipient of The African Leadership Award. He also received the Africa’s Emerging Community Development Icon Award 2014 and granted Honorary Citizenship Of The State Of Georgia.