Sylvester Kay-Adade [2021]

Sylvester Kay-Adade II is a Nigerian-Canadian Businessman and Investor.

He is the Chief Executive/Managing Director of SKA Ventures, a privately-owned, diversified business services and investment firm.

He is fondly called, and popularly known as Mr. Buttons, because of his first entrepreneurial action [making button-badges] at the age of 20. By May 2008, his company, Pearl Kreations, had gained much goodwill and recognition in its home base of Hamilton, Ontario. This eventually made him a 2010 Nominee for the coveted The Future Africa Award (TFAA) in Business, and Member of the Vancouver 2010 Winter Olympics Business Network.

He is a strategist, thinker, and one of the most sought-after unconventional speakers of his generation, recipient of numerous awards, and sponsor to various missions and organizations around the world. He attributes his success to divine favor, encouragement from his family and friends, and hard work.

Early life
Sylvester II Olusola Archer Adade was born on Friday, May 29th, 1987 in Lagos, Nigeria to Mrs. Fehintola Adade (née Bankole) and Mr. Sylvester “Kay” Adade, both chartered accountants of Nigerian (Yoruba) decent. He later modified his last name to Kay-Adade in memory of his late father; thus becoming Sylvester Kay-Adade II.

He was raised in a very loving, strong christian family. From a tender age, he has always been very bright, ambitious and inquisitive. He quickly learnt to be responsible and protective from being an older brother. Growing up with chartered accountants as parents, he was raised in a comfortable lifestyle, but grew up learning to be thrifty and pay attention to detail. His father introduced him to the purchase of stocks early in life and he also began to show a keen interest in the stock market in his teenage years. After noticing this, his father encouraged and taught him about all he needed to know about investments.

As a youngster, he was playful, very neat, inquisitive and popular among his peers. He attended etiquette & grooming classes during a summer holiday while in middle school; this accounts for most of his gentlemanly character (others were picked up from his father). As a grown man, he is always composed, easy to talk to, generous, meticulous, overly articulate and very nice. He is a deep thinker, analytically-minded, detail-oriented and a good listener. He also has a great sense of humor and loves to laugh. He eats healthy and exercise regularly. He is somewhat adventurous and will try anything, at least, once.

He did most of his schooling in Nigeria. His education was continuous and stable, but he did a lot of moving around in his college years. His first school was ABC Nursery Land, Lagos. After kindergarten, he attended St. Mary’s Private School, also in Lagos State. There, he was promoted to 5A Special, a 5th grade class for exceptional 4th graders (along with 31 others) in 1996, and hence graduated in 1997.

He gained admission into Federal Government College, Ijanikin, Lagos. After graduating high school in 2003, he went on to study Computer Science in Ogun State at Covenant University, Ota. After a year there, he decided to pursue his dream career in Medicine, and so, he transferred to Houdegbe North American University Benin (HNAUB), in Cotonou, Republic of Benin. He spent two years there before moving again. This time to Canada.

He settled in Hamilton, Ontario in August of 2006. In 2007, through his Ontario High School Diploma from Southern Ontario College, he accepted an offer of admission to study Psychology and complete his tertiary education at McMaster University. He later switched his major from Psychology to Health Studies/Public Health.

After his father passed in 2009, he decided to focus on business and enrolled for a diploma in Small Business Management & Entrepreneurship, which he obtained from Mohawk College, Hamilton in 2011. Running his own business gave him to flexibility to explore his entrepreneurial side and also spend more time with his family.

Business Ventures
He started Pearl Kreations from his bedroom in January, 2008, and that was its base of operation for the first three years. In the first couple of months, he had processed about 300 orders from over 100 satisfied customers from all across North America. He was aggressive with his marketing of the brand – attended any and every multicultural show, wrote dozens of business proposals, and printed scores of fliers. Within a short period of time, Pearl Kreations was producing button-badges for a variety of corporate, personal and international events.

Realizing his love for business and running Pearl Kreations for over a year, he diversified and went into business in his second passion, real estate – by launching Ransrive Realtors in November, 2009. After researching companies like Cargill, Mars, Samsung, The Walt Disney Company, and reading about men like Elon Musk and Richard Branson, he decided there was nothing he couldn’t accomplish through God’s grace. He set out to build his own empire. As Pearl Kreations became more successful, its profits provided the necessary capital for the exploration of new industries. The explorations birthed Property Management Firm, Ransrive Realtors, in November 2009; Think Tank, Sylver Productions, in August 2011; and Small & Medium Enterprises (SME) Advisory Firm, Herança Financial in April 2013.

During the expansion of business operations into Nigeria in 2014, it was discovered that The SKA Group could not be registered in Nigeria as his father, Sylvester Adade, had coincidentally registered a company called SKA Ventures Limited in December, 1991. In 2018, The SKA Group adopted SKA Ventures as its new name.

Today, SKA Ventures owns BNT Gourmet Café, Herança Financial, Pearl Kreations, Prestige Academy, Ransrive Realtors, Suave Clothing, Sylver Productions, and Vecasyer Hotels & Towers. SKA Ventures also has stakes in companies like RCubed-Merit LLC and Spinners Inc.

Apart from businessmen like Donald J. Trump, Kirk Kerkorian, Robert Herjavec, and Rupert Murdoch, he has eleven mentors. In each of them, he admires different special traits. They are Albert Einstein for his mind, Dr. Ben Carson for his determination, Pastor Enoch Adeboye for his humility, his mother, Fehintola Kay-Adade for her heart, Jeff Bezos for his drive and innovation, Dr. Martin Luther King Jr for his vision and leadership, Oprah Winfrey for her generosity, Ralph Lauren for his style, his father, Sylvester Kay Adade I for his thriftiness, William Gates for his brain, and Richard Branson for his risk-taking and diverse businesses.

Professional Career
Between 2017 and 2019, he worked as an Investment Banker with Kedari Capital, in Corporate Finance and Risk Management; eventually heading Market Research and Small Business Advisory. He was also the Secretary and Member of the Investment Steering Committee for the Kedari Investment Fund (KIF), as well as a part of the team managing two major transactions totaling over US$1billion within and outside Nigeria.

He set up the Kay-Adade Family Foundation (KAFF) for he and his family to support young talent, charities with healthcare offerings for the under-privileged, as well as various missions and outreaches, especially those undertaken by The Redeemed Christian Church of God (RCCG) Worldwide. It also on occasion offers scholarships to prospective students of Covenant University, Mohawk College, Prestige Academy, and Southern Ontario College

Personal Life
He is married to Olajumoke Kay-Adade, a Food Entrepreneur and Financier. He also has four sisters, Ronke, Anthonia, Rita and Veronica, whom serve as some of his best friends and confidants. He is a traditional family man, and loves his wife, sisters and mother very dearly. He is the only son and brother; as a result, equally dearly loved and guarded quite jealously. He is also a caring friend, but has very few of them. He enjoys playing chess and lawn tennis, reading and watching movies.