Business and Economy

Toke Alex-Ibru Becomes the New Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of The Guardian Newspapers

Mr Toke Alex-Ibru has been appointed as the new Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of The Guardian ( as part of the ongoing restructuring of the company. This comes after Mr Martins Oloja, the Managing Director/Editor-in-Chief, announced his retirement, which will take effect at the end of March 2024.

The newspaper’s Board made the announcement yesterday, expressing their confidence in Alex-Ibru’s ability to leverage his extensive corporate experience to enhance the brand value of the 40-year-old publication.

Alex-Ibru is a graduate of Cranleigh School and Wellington College. He obtained his History degree from the University of Exeter in the United Kingdom in 2002 and also completed an Executive Education program in Media and Entertainment at IESE Business School in Spain.

With over 15 years of experience in publishing and seven years in hospitality management, Alex-Ibru has played a crucial role in the management, growth, and sustainability of The Guardian as an Executive Director. He has also been actively involved in the newspaper’s digital transformation and served as a member of The Guardian Editorial Board.

In addition to his contributions to The Guardian, Alex-Ibru established Lexan Media Services Ltd in 2003, providing consulting services to global brands entering the Nigerian market. He also introduced Time Out magazine to Nigeria in 2005, publishing Time Out Lagos and Time Out Abuja under the license of the ‘Time Out Group’ from the UK.

Since 2010, Alex-Ibru has served as a Commercial representative of the Financial Times, UK. During this time, the platform has published several annual special reports on Nigeria, including FT Nigeria Oil and Gas and FT Investing in Nigeria.

Currently, Alex-Ibru holds directorship positions in Ikeja Hotels Plc and Tourist Company of Nigeria Plc. He is also the Chairman of Charles Hampton, a subsidiary of Ikeja Hotels, and is in an equity partnership with Lagos State Government’s Ibile Holdings. Furthermore, he serves as the Publisher of Marie Claire Nigeria under license from the Marie Claire International media group in France.

He is also a member of the advisory boards of WARIF International, the Board of Governors of Trinity Foundation (Ibru Ecumenical Centre), and the Nigerian-Belgium Chamber of Commerce.

His hobbies include philosophy, reading, traveling, tennis, running, yoga, and meditation.

The restructuring of the newspaper began in April of last year when the previous MD/Editor-in-Chief, Oloja, announced that Dr Oluwafemi Adekoya, the former Business Editor, would be the new Editor (daily) of the newspaper. Adekoya replaced Mr Alabi Williams, who is now a member of the Editorial Board under the chairmanship of Professor Wale Omole, the former Vice Chancellor of the Obafemi Awolowo University, Ile-Ife.

During the same time, the Saturday and Sunday editions of the newspaper were combined into Weekend editions. Dr Kabir Alabi Garba, another talented scholar in the newsroom, was appointed as the Editor of the Weekend publications, while Dr Wole Oyebade, a young intellectual and head of the aviation desk, was named Deputy Editor (daily).

According to Oloja, the departing MD/EiC, “The management operations are undergoing a disruption, and the young individuals in charge have done an excellent job in carrying on the legacy of the newspaper’s founder. I am extremely proud of my initiative to advocate for young scholars to take over the editorial management. Therefore, the Board is further solidifying the model we established in April by appointing Toke as CEO.”

“This is the new approach in the era of digital journalism. We will continue to support the Board and Management operations with our institutional knowledge. The Guardian school of journalism alumni association is truly remarkable, and the support from outside will remain significant, as you witnessed during the November 28, 2023, 40th Anniversary lecture and launch of The Guardian Federalist Papers.”

Oloja, “Inside Stuff With MARTINS OLOJA” columnist, since 2016, who has served The Guardian as Abuja Bureau Chief/Deputy Editor, Editor, (daily), Editor-in-Chief and fourth Managing Director/Editor-in-Chief of the newspaper, has been praised by the Publisher and Chairman of the Board, Lady Maiden Alex Ibru for his more than 24 years of “invaluable, remarkable and unblemished service records” in the company.

In a letter to the departing MD/EiC, the publisher noted, “…indeed, the retirement is well earned”.

Meanwhile the Board appreciates and “thanks Oloja, “for devoting your professional career to the service of the company”.  The Fellow of the Nigerian Guild of Editors, Oloja gained professional prominence as Editor of the premier newspaper in the nation’s capital, Abuja Newsday 1990-1993). He later served as Senior Associate Editor of The Source (newsmagazine) where he won two Nigerian Media Merit Awards (NMMA).

Oloja remains a member of the Editorial Board where he had served as a member, coordinator, chief editorial writer since 2012 when he was appointed Editor.

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