Top 10 Most Impactful Power Couples In Corporate Nigeria – Joe and Audrey Ezigbo

Prof. Joe Ezigbo is founder and managing director/CEO, Falcon Corporation Limited and Audrey is co-founder of the corporation and serves as deputy managing director. Together the couple has built Falcon Corporation from its commencement of operations in 1994 as Falcon Petroleum Limited to a business conglomerate that presently holds a diverse portfolio of prime investments across sectors and industries.

The group’s investment portfolio includes oil and gas, energy and infrastructure, real estate and construction. It offers engineering, procurement and construction services, including pipeline construction, fabrications and structural works as well as technical procurement services to the oil and gas industry. The business empire includes vast investments in the real estate development and properties holdings space.

The couple started out in a very humble way without the foreign technical partnership that was a primary requirement in the oil and gas industry but with a determination to make a difference. Their strategy was to take the industry best practices and cultivate them locally by benchmarking operations against the standards of multinationals and leading industry players. With dogged determination and unwavering conviction, the approach has paid off.

Joe and Audrey are in charge of one of the three local distribution companies operational in the Nigerian gas industry. Falcon Corporation is the licensed operator of the Ikorodu natural gas distribution franchise in Lagos State.

The company has built a network of over 50 kilometres of gas distribution pipeline across Ikorodu and environs, with a current delivery capacity of 25 million standard cubic feet per day. It supplies natural gas to industries within the zone, which provides alternative energy solutions. This affords cheap and dependable replacement fuel/feedstock for varied industrial processes and equipment.

The group’s operations in the gas sector are carried out through Falcongaz Limited of which Audrey is also managing director and principal strategist. Through the company, Joe and Audrey have deepened their footprints within the gas industry in Nigeria.

The company has developed capability in a wide range of engineering, procurement and construction and technical services in oil and gas and other sectors of the economy. Falcongaz’s range of services includes process piping, onshore pipelines, structural engineering, process engineering, instrumentation and automation, draughting and engineering project management.

Joe holds a Bachelor of Science degree from the University of Nigeria, a DIC and Master of Science degree from the Imperial College of Science and Technology, London and a Ph.D. from the University of Salford, Manchester. He was for many years a lecturer with the University of Nigeria, where he rose to the rank of professor.

In the course of his work in the field of pollution and environmental impact assessments of oil and gas exploration in the oil producing communities, he resolved to make a contribution in reducing environmental degradation caused by gas flaring. This has since become his major passion and his major business where his contributions have earned him recognition as ‘gasman’. For several years also, he championed natural gas training and enlightenment seminars, as his contribution to the development of Nigeria’s domestic gas industry.

Joe has vast business interests and sits on the boards of several companies. He is a member of the Nigerian Gas Association of which Audrey has been the president since 2018. His company’s great strides in the gas industry in facilitating the commercial and industrial exploitation of the abundant reserve of natural gas in Nigeria have been recognized through several awards over the years.

Audrey brings in her versatile knowledge and entrepreneurial skill into the running of the Falcon conglomerate. Her principal responsibilities are in the areas of finance, business development and commercial strategy.

She holds a B.Sc. degree in microbiology, a postgraduate diploma in banking and finance and an MBA in finance – all from the University of Nigeria. She also holds an MBA in Marketing from the Nnamdi Azikiwe University and an executive MBA from the Lagos Business School, Harvard Business School and IE Business School, Madrid.

She has played an extensive role within the Nigerian Gas Association in championing the course of the development of the industry. Joe and Audrey entered the Nigerian gas industry at a very early stage of their business and through the thick and thin; they have succeeded in applying their engineering knowledge towards creating a niche market within the gas industry in Nigeria.

One of their major advances in the business happened with the investment by African Capital Alliance group in Falcon in 2005. This marked a critical point of transformation for the couple, which enabled them to expand operational capacity and service delivery competences.

Joe and Audrey are empowering people and society through human capacity building for the development of the oil and gas industry. Audrey is a passionate trainer on various facets of management, entrepreneurship and business strategy.

Among her numerous leadership roles, she is a mentor of the Women in Management and business mentoring programme for young and aspiring female entrepreneurs. She focuses on mentoring early-stage and growth phase entrepreneurs in order to enable them institutionalize business best practices, position for long term business growth and sustainability and move their businesses to the next level.

Through their role, this power couple has helped people to live better, learn and launch their dreams and specifically improved the lives and culture of women and the youth in society. Their contributions in building entrepreneurial capacity in the gas industry and the economy at large have attracted several recognitions.

Over the years, Falcon Corporation has achieved a holistic gas engineering capability that enables it offer to customers a wide range of services –technical, design and consultancy. The company stands ready as a strategic partner in natural gas and energy deployment in all sectors of the economy where natural gas can be employed as a driver of economic growth and industrialization.

The company is committed to harnessing and optimizing the energy and economic potential of natural gas across the nation. It is therefore continuously scanning and engaging markets and prospects to identify emerging opportunities for growth.

The company views its gas development effort as an overriding national service while the business interest ranks second in priority. It therefore focuses on delivering significant economic and social impacts on the nation through its operations.

For Joe and Audrey, this is the backdrop of their continuous expansion of facilities and pipeline infrastructure. Their company’s franchise optimization drive therefore centres on delivering value to customers, stakeholders and the nation as a whole.