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Catching up with our winners: Chuku’s!

Thought Leader

Catching up with our winners: Chuku’s!

Nigerian tapas is trending. Chuku’s are taking on the London rush by slowing down life alongside authentic African treats. Count us in.

It’s been two months since the brother and sister duo won our GEW competition after showing us their ambitious flavour. Last year they blew us away by getting their story in the press, putting their redesign in motion, engaging their customers and identifying their network. That’s a busy two weeks.

Their £2,000 prize was followed by a whole lot more. With the rate they’re growing, expect to see a restaurant near you soon.

Getting inspired in Nigeria
Ifeyinwa & Emeka Frederick @ The Canvas Cafe.jpg

Imagine finding out you had an extra £2,000 in your pocket while you’re at the airport. Emeka and Ifeyinwa were just heading off on their long awaited trip to Nigeria to end their first year in business and explore their motherland when they found out they won our competition.

Three weeks in Lagos was the place to refresh before setting up their big plans for the New Year. It was the first time they had been to Nigeria together since their childhood family trips, and they found unexpected fame from the public.

– “One girl came up to me in an art gallery and asked if I was the girl from Chuku’s!”

A relaxed trip kicked off with a radio interview, meetings with journalists, and exploring the country with a food blogger to inspire their taste buds. It’s the kind of holiday only an entrepreneur would have. The buzz of winning GEW also gave them a surprise when they logged on Twitter – they had been approached by London Live to do their first ever television interview.

Watch them on London Live here:


The week of their interview was also the launch of their redesigned branding, and the announcement of their first pop-up of the year. These two don’t hold back.

– “At the beginning of last year we had a different mind-set. We thought we should aim for small goals as we’re not big yet. Since the masterclasses we’re now thinking - is that really big enough?

New year, new logo, new pledges

A new look for Chuku’s signposts where they want to go next. The duo are rapidly growing their foodie community, and worked with another young British-Nigerian entrepreneur at StartTeck to define the direction they want to take with their branding.

Making pledges has fed itself into their business strategy and helped them think beyond the day-to-day. Emeka and Ifeyinwa dreamt up their pledges for the year and shared them with their mentor. Wanting to prove themselves is what pushes them to make real changes.

And Chuku’s are hungry to grow. In the first step to opening a permanent site this year, they’re bringing their chin chin cheesecake back to trendy East London. Throughout February, Chuku’s are revisiting their first ever pop-up spot and taking over The Canvas Cafe every Sunday in Shoreditch. Putting this together with their £2,000 winnings, expect to see their plans VOOM very soon.

We’d suggest popping down and getting your hands on a plate of their jollof quinoa, so you can say you were there before they were famous.


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Keep up to date with Chuku’s on their website, Instagram, Twitter, Facebook or connect with co-founders @EmekaF and @Ifeyinwa in the comments.


Thanks for the wonderful write up @amycatling. And lovely to see you chop-chat-chilling last Sunday Smiley Happy

Thought Leader

My pleasure @EmekaF! Looking forward to seeing what you and @Ifeyinwa get up to next Smiley Happy