Stella Chinyelu Okoli (MON, OON) is a Nigerian pharmacist and entrepreneur. She is the founder and current C.E.O of Emzor Pharmaceutical.
Full Name: Stella Chinyelu Okoli
Birth place: Kano State, Nigeria
Alma mater: University of Bradford
Chelsea College (University of London)
Famous as: Pharmacist entrepreneur
Years active: 1976–present
Children: Chike Okoli
Biographical and educational history
Stella Chinyelu Okoli was born in Kano State, Northern Nigeria into the family of Felix Ebelechukwu and Margaret Modebelu, descents of Nnewi in Anambra State.
She started her formal education in 1954 after enrolling as a pupil at All Saint Primary School, Onitsha before proceeding to complete her secondary school education in 1964 at Ogidi Girls Secondary School, Ogidi.
In 1969, Stella Chinyelu Okoli graduated from the University of Bradford after studying Pharmacy. She also holds an M.Sc certificate in Biopharmaceutical after graduating from the University of London, Chelsea College in 1971.
Prior to the establishment of Emzor Pharmaceutical, Stella Chinyelu Okoli had worked in several pharmaceutical firms including Middlesex Hospital, London, Boots the Chemists Limited and Pharma-Deko.
In January 1977, Stella Chinyelu Okoli started Emzor Pharmaceutical with the initial name “Emzor Chemists Limited” as a small pharmacy retail shop in Somolu, Lagos State.
Emzor Pharmaceutical has since become one of the leading pharmaceutical companies in Nigeria with over 50 products since its incorporation in 1984.
After the death of her son Chike Okoli in 2005, Stella Chinyelu Okoli started the Chike Okoli Foundation in 2006 as a non-profit organisation founded with the aim of fighting poverty and diseases by raising awareness on cardiovascular diseases.
Stella Chinyelu Okoli also runs the Chike Okoli Centre for Entrepreneurial Studies.
Since its establishment, the foundation has trained thousands of business owners and budding entrepreneurs.
In 2011, COF built Chike Okoli Centre for Entrepreneurial Studies at Nnamdi Azikiwe University, Awka. This centre provides entrepreneurial research, training and education for youths.
The foundation also provides free healthcare services and lecture people worldwide on effect of heart disease and stroke. It has reached out to millions of Nigerians on healthy lifestyle.
Emzor Pharmaceutical Industries Limited
Emzor Pharmaceuticals is a wholly owned indigenous company incorporated in 1984.
The company was established for the purpose of manufacturing high-quality pharmaceutical products and medical consumables.
The company commenced pilot production in 1985 with the introduction of its flagship brand, Emzor Paracetamol.
Since then, Emzor has continuously expanded its product range and produces over 50 time-tested products. Its product range include vitamins, anti-malaria, antibiotics, antacid, analgesics, anti-histamine and many more.
Remember that this all started from a small chemist shop in Shomolu. The small shop has grown to one of the leading pharmaceutical companies in Nigeria with subsidiaries. Emzor has offices in Mali, India, Liberia, Ghana and Sierra Leone.
Emzor is today a household name and a leader in pharmaceutical market in Nigeria.
Subsidiaries of Emzor Pharmaceutical Industries Limited
Zolon Healthcare Limited
The company is a specialty healthcare organisation positioned to provide intelligent solution to the healthcare needs of people.
The company’s specialties include oncology, gynecology, biotechnology, cardiology and others.
Emzor Hesco Limited
They are a total healthcare solution provider. The company provides solutions for hospital equipment and services in conjunction with reputable brands and manufacturers from Europe, America and Asia.
Their services include procurement consulting, supply of medical equipment, training of best practices, supply of medical consumables, turnkey hospital projects and services.
Emzor Pharmacy and Stores
This is Emzor’s retail pharmacy for distributing Emzor Pharmaceutical products to Nigerians.
Life Gate Medicals Limited
They provide training for healthcare workers and medical tourism.
ong>Boards Where Stella Chinyelu Okoli Serves
Stella Chinyelu Okoli has served in several capacities including member of the Economic Summit of Nigeria and the Health Matters Advisory Boards of Nigeria.
Stella was the Vice President of Manufacturers Association of Nigeria and the Nigerian Association of Chambers of Commerce, Industries, Mines and Agriculture.
She was once the Chairman of the Pharmaceutical Manufacturer Group and the Manufacturers Association of Nigeria.
In 2010, she became a non-Executive Director of Guaranty Trust Bank.
Stella Chinyelu Okoli is a member of the Nigeria Industrial Policy and Competitiveness Advisory Council.
Awards and recognitions
Member of the Order of the Niger award.
In 2012, she was honoured at the 17th ThisDay Annual Awards.
Stella Chinyelu Okoli is also a recipient of the ECOWAS International Gold Award.
Honorary Doctor of Business Administration by Nnamdi Azikiwe University, Awka 2011
International Women’s Entrepreneurial Challenge Award 2012
Women of Distinction and Lifetime Achievers at ThisDay Annual Awards 2012
Nigeria Royalty Awards 2013
Business Person of the Year at the Sun Newspaper Awards 2016
Africa Women Innovation and Entrepreneurship Forum 2017
Silverbird Lifetime Achievement Award