Episode 28, Startup is not equal to raising money. Chika Uwazie, CEO at TalentBase

Chika Uwazie is the CEO of TalentBase.

TalentBase makes it easier for businesses to manage their HR processes such as payroll, benefits, staff evaluation and time tracking.

Chika joined the startup as the VP of business development immediately after moving back to Nigeria from the states. She has since then risen to the position of CEO and has gone on to represent TalentBase at 500 Startups.

She has a lot of tips for young people looking to start businesses especially if you are just moving back to  Nigeria.

In this episode you’ll learn:

  1. She met the founder of Talent Base in 2013. And she decided to come home in 2015 to join the startup. Why did she make this decision?
  1. She was in a race to come back to Nigeria before she hits 40. How did her father influence that decision?
  1. She didn’t think working in HR for any of the big corporations in America was going to be enough fulfilment for her. Why did she think so? And has moving to Nigeria to work in a startup paid off?
  1.  She joined TalentBase as VP of business development. That basically meant bringing in more business. As someone who just moved back to the country how did she get the job done?
  1. There is a distinct change in the mindset when you own a part of the business. Your approach is different, the decisions you make are different. How did Chika move from employee to CEO? What challenges did she face?
  2. “There’s a big difference between being a founder and an entrepreneur, even though most founders are entrepreneurs”. Why was this statement made? Find out at 14:38
  1. Chika credits 500 Startups for helping her tell the TalentBase story. She is confident about pitching her story in any gathering. Why is this important to her? And what is the importance of being able to pitch your story as a business?

Moving back to Nigeria?  lessons from Chika Uwazie

1. Build your network before moving back fully

Chika has been coming to Nigeria for years, forming a network and building her connections. Having that network made a difference when she decided to move back home and work in a startup.

2.  Move home with your relatives

If you are moving back to Nigeria, have someone; could be an aunt or an uncle you can stay with for the few months. It helps provide a soft landing while you prepare to be on your own and run your business.

Join this thread at 10:00

Fire Round Questions

Q: What is your business pain point?

A: Talent

Q: What is your number one growth metric?

A: How many companies we are adding on every month

Listen to other fire round questions and her answers at 56:00

Selected Links


Y Combinator



500 Startups

Bella Naija

Mobil Nigeria


More from this show

Building the Future Podcast


Episode 28