Samuel Maduka Onyishi: The CEO of Peace Mass Transit, the Biggest Transportation Company in Nigeria
This post deals with the biography and growth process of Samuel Maduka Onyishi: The CEO of Peace Mass Transit, the Biggest Transportation Company in Nigeria.
Most Nigerians have in one way or another heard of Peace Mass Transit. The Peace Mass Transit is the biggest transportation company in Nigeria with over 30 terminals and 3000 buses. The company has terminals in more than 20 states in Nigeria. The owner of this well-performing business, who started from scratch as an average poor Nigerian, is Samuel Maduka Onyishi. In this post, we’ll be looking at the biography of Samuel Maduka Onyishi.
Biography of Samuel Maduka Onyishi, the CEO of Peace Mass Transit
Maduka Onyishi was born in Nsukka, Southeast, Nigeria. He was raised as child by his father and mother in Ihe/Owerre, Nsukka, close to the University of Nigeria. His father was a laborer at the university while his mother was a housewife, a farmer, and a petty trader.
After finishing his primary school in Nsukka, young Maduka was sent off to study in a secondary school in Anambra State. It was while he was there that his father passed away. Due to his mother didn’t have much doing, it was difficult for Maduka to keep going to school in Anambra State.
He left the school and came back to Nsukka. He attended series of school before he settled for Saint Teresa’s College, Nsukka. According to him, he suffered as a secondary school student, and aside from not being able to afford the fees, his school uniform was tattered, and he hardly coped.
As a child and in secondary school, he did a lots of jobs and traded to survive. He was a bus conductor. He was pushed wheelbarrow. He picked nuts to sell.
After finishing from secondary school, he started full-time trading. He traded spare parts in Kano, Nigeria, for a while. While trading in Kano, he decided to enter the university to acquire a degree. According to Samuel Maduka Onyishi, he decided to acquire a degree because in a family meeting, someone had told him to sit down that he shouldn’t be talking where graduates are talking. It pushed him into seeking higher education.
He got admission to study in the University of Nigeria in the mid-1990s. He acquired a Diploma in the school before he went on to acquire B.Sc in Social Work, graduating at Second Class Upper level. Notwithstanding the struggle and suffering, he has always been an intelligent man.
It was while he was in the University of Nigeria that he got the idea of starting a transportation company. According to him, noticing the excess time the students had, he decided to try out the business of transport. Taking money from his spare parts business in Kano, he bought two buses, and with that, he conveyed people from Nsukka to Enugu. He was driver for one of the buses, while another person drove the other bus.
The first name for his transportation business was “Nsukka Mass Transit.” The business moved, and he got a lot of passengers. It was after someone started “Nsukka Urban Transit” that he chose “Peace Mass Transit.”
In a space of three to five years, the bus expanded from two buses to over 300 buses shuttling between Nsukka, Enugu, Onitsha, and a few other places. As the business grew, he expanded to farther locations like Abuja, Lagos, and Kaduna. Presently, his fleet is around 3000 buses, or more. Chief Onyishi stated that he imports around 1000 buses yearly.
Due to his high number of buses, he built an automobile assembling plant in Enugu. This assembling plants assembles his vehicles, and a few other vehicles, with parts imported from China. He named his vehicles after his family.
He has, over the years, diversified to other businesses. He imports engine oil. He is into the production of plastic and rubber used as parts for his vehicles as they are assembled. He is a board director or chairman of some prominent companies. He is into Maritime–water transportation, importation, haulage, and more. Recently, he acquired some hectares of land along Ugwuogo-Opi road in Agu Ekwegbe, Enugu State to build a secondary school and a university.
Chief Onyishi states that the entrepreneurial university and secondary school he is building, called Maduka Entrepreneurial University and Maduka College, will produce graduates who are job creators and business founders. Seeing the opportunities in Enugu State in Health, Education, and other sectors, this school came to his mind. The graduates will be able to start up businesses and manage them in different sectors like health, entertainment, logistics, and many more.
He defines his school as the biggest legacy he’d be leaving behind. Though it is not tutition-free, it is a non-profit venture, as the school will operate independently to a good standard, with quality teaching and learning facilities.
On the aspect of the difficulty of doing business in Nigeria, Chief Onyishi complains of the high foreign exchange rate. Importation has become difficult for him and other business people. While he imports at a high price, he cannot increase the cost of the fares for his buses because the earning of Nigerians haven’t improved. It makes doing business in Nigeria difficult.
Samuel Maduka Onyishi is happily married with children. His wife is the deputy director of his companies. Some of the children also play important roles in his business.
He was born in the month of November. He has gone on to get more certifications like honorary PhD degree from the University of Nigeria, the London School of Economics, and so many more. He gives back to society through his entrepreneurship programs like educating upcoming entrepreneurs, providing funding, offering scholarships to the indigents, training people in the universities abroad, and many more.
The popular Air Peace had to seek his permission before they used the name for their airline. This is because he had registered the name with Nigerian CAC organization. Therefore, he is not the owner of Air Peace. Air Peace belongs to Allen Onyema.
How much is Samuel Maduka Onyishi Worth?
Chief Onyishi’s assets and businesses are worth around $400 million and more. He is most likely the richest man in Nsukka area. He is also most likely the richest man in Enugu State.