Wale Babalakin

Wale Babalakin
Source: Daily Trust

Wale Babalakin is the entrepreneur son of a former Supreme Court Judge form Gbongan in Osun State, Bolarinwa Babalakin. Although Wale Babalakin studied law like his father, even acquiring the highest qualification attainable, he delved into property development, and is now the owner of Nigeria’s biggest construction firm, the Bi-Courtney.

Born in 1 July 1960 in Ibadan Babalakin schooled at Government College Ibadan for his secondary education and briefly at The Polytechnic Ibadan before proceeding to study law at the University of Lagos. By 1982, he had been called to bar, but he continued with a Masters course through the Commonwealth scholarship at the University of Cambridge. He bagged a Ph.D in Law at the same university when he was only 26 years old. Through the influence of an Austrian friend, he had developed interest in business, selling his property in England to seal a deal which ultimately yielded profit. After this first experience, however, he continued in his law practice under Rotimi William’s prestigious firm, and obtained Nigeria’s highest professional honor in Law, the Senior Advocate of Nigeria in the year 2000.

With a firm understanding of Litigation, Arbitration, Real Estate law and Project Finance, Babalakin had prepared for a life in Real estate business, which began in 1989 with his involvement with Stabilini Visinoni, an Italian company whose controlling share he later bought in 1992. Seven years later, Babalakin became the chairman of the company. The Bi-Courtney owned by him constructed the new Murtala Muhammed Airport, Terminal 2. The same company won the contract for the concession of the Lagos-Ibadan Expressway, and planned to build a world class expressway, before the revocation by President Jonathan’s government. Babalakin has also worked with Federal and several State Governments in conceptualizing transactions to support the development of infrastructure and investment in the country. He is being charged with using his company and other surrogates to transfer funds illegally.