4. Timothy Adeola Odutola
Timothy was one of the pioneers of modern Nigerian indigenous entrepreneurship and the first president of the Manufacturers Association of Nigeria.
According to historians, On March 25, 1943, the man who later became arguably the most respected politician and strategist in Nigeria, Chief Obafemi Awolowo, requested a loan of £1,400 from Timothy Odutola.
The loan, according to Awolowo, would be fully paid in 12 years. He did not get the loan. But, the duo would later form a strong political alliance in the old Western Region.
He was described to have built a multimillion-dollar business, including three factories, a retail franchise, a cattle ranch and a sawmill before 1960.
He previously worked as a clerk in multiple sections of the Lagos Colony and in the Ijebu Native Administration between 1921 and 1932.
By 1932, he opened stores where he traded damasks and fish in various cities in the Western Region; and later, he began trading in cocoa and palm oil.
A venturesome person, he also dealt in sawmilling and gold mining. By 1967, he had begun production of tyres and tubes which did so well that he added a $1,700,000 plant, with the plan to harvest his own rubber from his 5,000-acre plantation