QUINCY Ayodele, the amiable woman behind Quincy Herbal Slimmers, no doubt knows her onions. She has been putting smiles on faces of people with her natural herbs for almost two decades now. In order to further expand and move the brand to the next level, her daughter, Tobi Ayodele Keeney has joined the team with her medical expertise. Together, mother and daughter are ready to conquer the world with their herbal medicine.
ENCOMIUM Weekly had interviews with the duo about this new development, plans and goals already put in place to further serve their clients right…
How does it feel seeing your daughter come of age and becoming part of Quincy or even taking over?
Let me correct an impression. I am not handing over Quincy to my daughter. She is joining me with her expertise, her knowledge in science, the training she had abroad and the youthfulness in her. She is coming in to enrich the system on ground, modernize and expand it more. I am still with her, advising her, though she will be in the forefront, no doubt about that. It is what every parents prays for, for you to have someone take over from you. Thank God, I am still here. We will be consulting together. I heal with natural medicine. A healer can never retire. Once you start treating, you cannot stop treating. Once she is here, I will have time to myself, research and mind my grand children. My daughter has always been part of the business. She grew up with the business, she is now officially a director in Quincy Herbal Slimmer with me.
How will you handle clients who insist on getting treatment from you alone?
Already, I have started introducing her to our clients. She is already consulting. She has the knowledge, she is good on the job. Whether they see me or her, it is the same. Most of our clients don’t insist on seeing me. It is either they request to see me or to see my daughter. In most cases, we even consult together now. Our clients are happy. But eventually, I will be happier to see her handle clients all by herself, let me have sometime to research more and make discoveries. I will also have time to do my World Health Organisation (WHO) assignment. Eventually, when I grow old, Quincy continues. Traditional medicine believes the knowledge must be passed from generation to generation. That is in place already at Quincy. I am happy it is happening in my presence.
Since your daughter has a medical and science background, will Quincy start surgery as well?
Never, we use natural herbs for all our treatments. She has a medical science background no doubt, we are not changing that status quo at Quincy. If some people prefer surgery, we will kindly refer them to where they can get it. Here, we use natural herbs for everything we do. She will never perform surgery at Quincy, she will continue to use the natural herbs which she is already used to.
Can you tell us how you built Quincy as a brand to this enviable height?
First, I will say thank you to the Almighty God who gave me the vision to start the business. Over the years, endurance has been my keyword, consistency, honesty and integrity. In herbal medicine business, it is easy for some quacks to tell lies but at Quincy, we don’t do that. We will tell you what we are giving you, what you should expect, specific timing of treatment is what we do. We believe in every condition, there is a cure in nature. Integrity is very important, it has kept us till now. We go straight to the point. People have come in with millions of cash but we still tell them the truth. The mercy of God has kept us till this level.
How prepared do you think she is?
She is very much prepared, she grew up in the business. I started training her right from childhood. She has been in the business for sometime, she is well prepared to continue.
Are there cases you have handled that have given you a lot of challenges before you got a solution to it?
Like I told you, at Quincy, we are very honest with our business. We have had cases like that but we were able to handle most of them. There are some cases that were presented and we just had to do more research to get what to do. Some, we had to call our mentors abroad or at home, put heads together to get result. We believe to every condition there is a cure in nature. In all our cases, we were able to provide remedies even if there were challenges, we were able to provide treatment. We thank God for that.
There are so many herbal clinics out there, what do you have to tell people, most especially because of the quacks?
In the practice of medicine, you can only talk about yourself. Since I am not in a position to do that, I believe the government will look into that and come out with a solution as soon as they can. People should try and identify places with result. We are begging the government to pass traditional medicine bill which will give a legal standing for government to wipe off all quacks in the industry.
How many branches do you have?
Right now, we have five branches in Nigeria. We have more satellite branches abroad and of course, we have the internet branch, courtesy of the new blood in our midst. We are not into branches that much anymore. We are making use of the latest technology. I call them internet branches, we have to be abreast of happenings in the world. We also have a branch in the U.S.
How do you find time to attend to other branches?
In my 18 years of practice, one way or the other, I find time to attend to schedules. I consult mostly on schedules but I move around other branches as well. Our clients are used to appointments. They even keep to appointments. My daughter is also here, the matron is there, we have consultants in all our branches who are well qualified. So, that has never been a problem.
‘Quincy will be a role model for healthy living’ – TOBI KEENEY
I have always been part of it. It feels great, I enjoy the challenge of taking up a bigger responsibility.
Over the years, did you envisage that such a task will come your way one day?
I and my siblings have at one time or the other worked at Quincy. As we grew older, we increased our roles. We are all in it. Any other thing we involve ourselves aside Quincy is just secondary.
You have a big task ahead of you because Quincy is a big brand.
I thank God that she worked very hard to build the brand to an enviable height. My job is even light because of the level she has moved the brand to. The major responsibility is to keep the status she built in the past 18 years and even move it to a greater height. I have a lot of background work to do. I believe the major challenge I will have is keeping abreast of latest development, keeping awareness about Quincy out there.
What are the goals you have set for the business?
To create the desired and effective awareness that there are alternative ways of living a healthy life. Obviously, we are going to open more branches. We are looking at opening one in Lekki, Lagos and Abuja. We are opening one in either Wuse or Maitama. We want to get to as many places as we can. We do phone consultation and also we are on the internet. The requirement for treating clients is to know them well before we can treat them. We also want to tailor our products to meet client’s needs.
Any plan to rebrand?
There is nothing wrong with Quincy, so there is no need to rebrand. We just need to continue expanding and improving the quality of our services.
What plans do you have for the international market?
For now, our major focus is the Nigerian market. We are looking at West African communities as well. We have a lot of clients from Ghana, The Gambia, South Africa, U.K, U.S.A. About 30 per cent of our clients come from international community. We are going to reach out to them more. We also have a factory we are planning to expand. We want a situation where we can mass produce, so that we can meet the expansion target.
How is marriage treating you?
It is okay. I thank God, I am happily married. Though marriage has its ups and downs, I thank God that everything is going on fine.
What is the best thing about being married?
The best thing about being married is having a companion, someone you can talk to, someone you can share your goals with. It is very different from having your parents and siblings around, moving in with a stranger, start sharing your lives, planning together, it is actually fun. I think that is the best thing about being married, you should also consider the God factor. When He is there, everything falls in place.
Why did you decide to walk down the aisle with a non-Nigerian?
I didn’t decide, maybe it’s because I did not school in Nigeria. Where I was living had more foreigners than Nigerians. My parents had always told me not to discriminate, anyway. I believe if somebody approaches you, he likes you, likes your family, he is ready to be there for you, you should put all these into consideration first before the colour or tribe. That was what I followed. Thank God that my parents are happy with him. His parents are also happy with me as well. You wouldn’t even know he is not a Nigerian.
How do you juggle marriage and work?
Thank God, I have good family support. My extended family are with my kids. I have the freedom to pursue the business because my children are in safe hands. That has really helped. I and my husband travel a lot. We are coping.
In five years, where do you intend taking Quincy to?
I see us going global, mass producing our own products. I see us being role models for healthy living.
– SHADE WESLEY-METIBOGUN