For Helen Eyo, hospitality has been entrenched in her from a young age. For the last child in a family of six, taking care of others came naturally just as her acumen for business.

Elen Homes
Elen Homes

It was these that laid a foundation for her to establish Elen Homes, a shortlets company in Lagos with a vision to provide affordable housing to meet the surging demand.

Raised by hardworking parents with her father, a logistic consultant and a mother who is a fashion designer, Helen was taught to never limit herself to what existed in the periphery and she should always aim for better.

She was drawn to the shortlets business because following proper research and intuition, the double trigger a smart business-oriented person needs, she realised that there was a dearth in the details in catering to customers in the hospitality business.

“I saw a need to paint my views on what hospitality should be like in Nigeria, many at times the hotels get in the wrong and the few persons into shortlets business as at when I got into the business were not making strides I was hoping for. I decided to take the leap of faith, turn a desire for change into a means of revenue.”

And the results have always motivated her, she said, “the smiles and thank you I get from every one of my clients when they have to say goodbye from any of my apartments.”

“It gladdens my heart knowing I made someone feel special at their stay at any of my apartments by giving them the best of hospitality service,” she added.

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However, even as the successes are a thing of delight, the businesswoman has faced a number of hurdles in the business, which she believes have a high risk as well as a high reward.

“So far, every challenge has been a rewarding lesson for me, so I’d like to say just like every other business, there are good days and there are bad days.

“When it is good, I like to make the most of it. When it isn’t good, I remember the good days and improve my strategy to ensure I return to good times,” she quipped.

She also believes that the sky is big enough for many people, especially those with the will to succeed to fly.

“Make a move. You will not know if you’d make it or not if you don’t make that first move.”

While data centres, healthcare developments, and logistic parks are the outliers in terms of driving Africa’s real estate growth in the short to medium term, Elen Homes is seeking to change the narrative around the shortlets sector through collaboration and inclusiveness.

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