“Spotlight” is a series that focuses on young Nigerian creatives and the amazing things that they’re doing in their various fields. It was started because we wanted to share their stories and individual journeys on the path to success.
This week we’re featuring the Jack of all trades, young entrepreneur and the ultimate plug for all things lit, Sammie Saint Beeśus. In his interview, Samuel breaks down the negative and positive aspects of working in the entertainment industry, working with high profile celebrities and how he plans on bridging the Lagos and Abuja nightlife.
Check out his interview below:
How did you get to become a brand strategist? Tell me about your journey.
The Journey started in secondary school when I always imagined myself working in advertising and entertainment, it’s just something I’ve always loved.
What or who inspired you to get into this business?
I’ve always looked up to men like Master P, Biggie Smalls and women like Debra L. Lee who I believe is one of the most powerful women in the entertainment space. I admire her entrepreneurial gusto and how she has been able to build a reputable brand and a network over the years.
What’s a day in the life of Sammie Beesus?
I’m very jovial, I like to have fun I like to party, I start my days exercising and listening to podcasts/ watching YouTube then I head to work and end my day spending time with my friends. my hobbies are bar hopping, throwing parties and traveling, I feel throwing parties are therapeutic, it’s one thing that keeps me grounded.
As someone part of the entertainment industry what are some of the negative and positive aspects of working there?
I feel people look down on young entrepreneurs, I’m under 25, I’ve seen people turn down my offers simply because I’m young and they feel I’m not so experienced in the field, I see people try to compete with me and I’m confused. I’m like I’m really too young to feel this old, it just how people are, there’s space for everyone to shine, honestly I enjoy working with people that are younger than me, I’m currently putting my younger sister on, she’s even more talented than me. The positive aspect is you get to meet new people and build a strong clientele base if you’re sharp, you have access to information that can be useful in other fields like equity, oil and gas, I see people exchange numbers, business cards at my parties. It’s lovely because it’s an avenue to network and socialize.
Do you pay attention to others’ strong reactions to your work? Does that affect what you create?
I’m at a point in my career where I know how to manage and evaluate feedbacks and reactions. My team is made up of my closest friends, my graphics designer is in Canada, some of my partners are in Abuja, I can’t work without these people so they have a say in my decision making process.
Do you work with celebrities on a regular basis? If so were you ever intimidated or star struck by the celebrities you met while working in the industry?
I was only star struck when I was younger, not anymore, I feel I’ve met all the big celebrities I was looked up to growing up, Wiz, Spinall, Teezee, these guys are really amazing, they’re so cool in person. I work with Teezee in DRB. I’ve learnt so much about the music business from him in the space of one year and I feel he’s one of the those celebrities in Nigeria that properly know the Length and breadth of music business. I’ve never been intimidated by celebrities as I don’t really care for them. If they’re coming for my parties they must buy table. I buy tickets at concerts I don’t work at, so I don’t see why any celebrities should expect me to do giveaway. There’s no feeling of animosity but it’s just not part of my business ethics.
Can you tell me a little bit about your clothing line ‘Sammie of Lagos?’ How did that start?
Sammie of Lagos is a brand conceived by a friend of mine called Kodi. The major question at that time was What’s next? that’s one question I ask myself every time, at that time it felt doable to start a T-shirt brand, I’m glad it has been a success, next drop is December, I hope you’ll buy, definitely going to stock in the U.K and Canada.
Your skits are hilarious and relatable ASF. What got you into that?
That one was just banter, I was bored and I felt like experimenting that, a lot of people have encouraged me to capitalize on it but honestly it’s not my forte, I just gave you guys on Instagram cause we were on lockdown and I was trying out new things, more to come in the possible future.
Are you thinking of making it a regular thing?
What I’m trying to make regular is building a reputable brand, I currently started a company with Ose Freda, an expert in advertising, it’s centred on entertainment and lifestyle as well, stay tuned.
What do you do to keep yourself motivated and interested in your job?
I read a lot, two of my favourite authors are Philip Kotler and Seth Goden, I watch YouTube cause I learn from that and I also spend a lot of time with people who are experts in my field, it’s better to learn from others mistakes, as working in Nigeria where there’s no structure you have to be very disciplined and calculated.
What is your favourite/ biggest accomplishment?
I don’t think I’ve accomplished anything but I’m currently in the process of bridging the divide between Abuja and Lagos nightlife, doing everything possible in my best capacity to evaluate the nightlife experience in both cities, thanks to the support of people like Tony Ameh, Big Freeds, Amaka Okosieme and abujatoLagosgang
Do you do any other upcoming creative projects on the side?
Asides entertainment I also have experience in finance, I’m working on somethings with a bank, I’ll let you know when the time is right. I honestly don’t think I’ll be in the entertainment space forever, I’d like to cut my teeth in other fields eventually but I’ll be here for a while
To keep up with Samuel, follow him on Instagram.
By: Dammy Eneli
See Also: Meet Talented Actor, Philips Francis