by Duke Magazine
Kevin Okyere (Instagram/ Kevinokyere)

Kevin Okyere is a Ghanaian entrepreneur in the Oil sector in Ghana. He is the Founder and Chief Executive Officer of Springfield Energy, a billion dollar oil company.The company was founded in 2008.

Kevin was born in 1980, to an affluent Ashanti family in Kumasi region of Ghana. Even though he came from a rich family, he used to sell iced water to football supporters at the Kumasi Sports Stadium while growing up. He attended Opoku Ware Senior High School before leaving for the USA for further studies in Accounting at the George Mason University in Virginia.

Okyere moved back to Ghana in 2004, and then joined his elder sister in her business in order to understand the business climate of the country. A year after working for his sister, he amassed  a small team of investors together to found Westland Alliance Ltd, a telecommunication company that provided international call routing services for AT&T and several international calling card companies. Westland Alliance and its subsidiaries then later had specializations into cell towers and value-added services (VAS) for telecommunication companies. Even though the company thrived successfully, but it was short-lived as Kevin opt out for another business venture. 

In 2006, while still running Westland Alliance, Okyere started working with a business partner who supplied crude oil and condensates to the Tema refinery. As Okyere interacted frequently with this associate of his, he then learned that there was a shortfall of storage facilities for petroleum products in Tema. Flush with cash from his telecommunication journey, he acquired land and began building a storage tank farm in Tema, close to the refinery. When he invited officials from Ghana’s National Petroleum Authority to inspect his construction project, they were so amazed at his young and bright initiative of undertaking such capital-intensive project, and employing scores of indigenous Ghanaians. The officials were so impressed with what he was building, and advised him to apply for a Petroleum Product import license.

That brought about the breakthrough of Springfield Energy’s trading business. Since its inception in 2008. Springfield Energy has imported refined petroleum products such as gasoline, dual-purpose kerosene, gasoil, naphthalene and jet fuel into Ghana. The company is now the chief importer of fuel products into Ghana with revenues of more than $1 billion in its trading business alone. International oil companies who were having reconnaissance to venture into business in Ghana had to partner with locally owned companies. When BP PLC came to Ghana in 2010 and was looking for a trading company they could partner with, the British multinational partnered with Springfield – a partnership that still exists today. Springfield Group has consistently carved its profits from its core trading business into building and acquiring other businesses within the energy sector, and now co-owns gas stations in Ghana, storage facilities, an oilfield services subsidiary and a haulage company.

His appearance may seem modest, but he has always been a man of great foresight. Within his  14 years of business, Kevin Okyere, at 40, has built his company, Springfield Group, into a $1 billion (annual revenues) multi- faceted Ghanaian energy behemoth. Springfield Group is a conglomerate involved in trading and transporting hydrocarbons, having terminals and storage, gas stations, and recently, oil exploration. The company employs hundreds of people in Ghana and Nigeria.

The life outside business for Kevin is giving time to philantropy. His Kevin Okyere Foundation in partnership with the Springfield Group supports programmes in education and health sectors across Ghana. The Foundation has a standing agreement with the largest government-owned hospital in the country, whereby the foundation funds the hospital bills of poor patients who cannot afford to pay for their bills. The foundation also pays the school fees of hundreds of Primary school children in Ghana, and he sends some of the country’s brightest students to Universities in North America and Europe.

Kevin said:

“I’ve been fortunate in business and in life, and giving back is the least I can do. In the end, I don’t think I want to be remembered as one of the wealthiest Ghanaians; I’d like to be remembered as one of the biggest givers.”

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