Friday, February 25, 2022

Government can make difference in SME industry says 'Magic Finger' - ITREALMS

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Abubakar Nurudeen is a multi-talented Artist, Visual storyteller, Cake decorator and sculptor with a distinct touch is also known as 'Magic Finger.' He shared with ITREALMS' GBEMI OMOTOSO the difference between Nigeria and UAE in cake industry.

Excerpts:

How did you come about the name "Magic Finger"?

Waoh! I got the unique name when I was still working with "Cake by Tosan" as an artist and sculptor.

There was a lady that came to learn then, anytime I work, she will call me Magic Finger, that's how I got my name (smiles).

Can you share your experience during your training with "Cake by Tosan"

I didn't train directly from Tosan. He used to call me anytime he has an artistic work; like painting and sculpting on a cake.

Are you also a freelance decorator?

No! But I started as one. Till today, some top bakers still call me to work for them.

Do you bake also?

Yes, I have someone that bakes for me while I do the finishing.

Do u believe in mentorship?

 (Smiles) Yes! You need someone to inspire you and that is a mentor.

What would you do if a distressed customer came requesting a complex cake for a wedding the next day?

I will just sit down and relax and call some of my boys to help me out as we got to work as a team to actualise the impromptu order (sighs).

Do you have an academy?

No! But I have a cake studio in which I trained people that wants to learn.

What do you think is the most difficult aspect of cake decorating?

It's the artistic part of it because most people can bake fantastic cake, but when it comes to decorating/artistic touch they are weak. That is why most top bakery consult Cake Artist for final touch(es).

How many years experience do you have in cake decorating?

12 years and still counting....

 

Have you ever had a rude customer(s) and how do you handle them?

It's a normal thing because customers can never be the same. One needs to calm down because patience is the key.

 Where are you located?

Currently I'm in United Arab Emirates (UAE). I'm here to improve my craft.

Can you compare Nigeria's economy to UAE in terms of baking materials & tools?

There is a big difference. The problem we have in Nigeria is the government; Our government don't care about the people, especially Small Medium Entrepreneurs (SMEs). However, the reverse is the case here because the baking materials are not so expensive as Baking Industry are making money here while in Nigeria, every day cake ingredients/materials 'skyrocket' as the government don't care.

What challenges are you facing in UAE as a cake decorator?

(Smiles) Hhmm! No challenges yet! Just give them the best because they really value artistic cake. I could remembered during the past administration Nigerians were ready to pay any amount for cake designs but now, it is well (gasps). May God help us. People prefers picture on their cake because they can't afford the 3D (on the cake). That is really affecting Cake Artist in Nigeria.

How easy is it to establish a cake business in UAE compared to setting up one in Nigeria?

In Nigeria nobody will question you in starting a business but in UAE, one needs to get necessary documents (government's approval); if not there will be an issue.

Magic Finger at work ...

Is there any discrimination among foreign Cake decorators and locals in UAE?

There is nothing of such. No discrimination as we relates well. In addition, I have met a lot of Cake Artist from different countries and I'm gaining a lot from them because no man is an Island of knowledge.

Can you compare your patronages in UAE to Nigeria?

Actually, I don't have any business here because I'm here to gain more experience and leave after my stay. I'm on a contract as a Cake Artist for a big Cake Company in UAE in which I will soon leave after the expiration of the contract.


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