Lawyer Of The Week – Opeyemi Iredumare
Meet Opeyemi Iredumare, an entertainment lawyer and our Lawyer of the Week! He’s a founding partner at TechnoLawgical Partners, Lagos, Nigeria and Head Legal, Finance and Content Acquisition (Global) at Transsnet Music Limited, Boomplay Music, Hong Kong.
Follow our insightful interview with Mr Iredumare below:
1. Kindly introduce yourself.
My name is Iredumare Opeyemi. I am a 90’s child birthed in Nigeria. I am a Legal Practitioner called to the Nigerian bar with excellent skills in business development, sales and creative thinking. I studied Law (LL. B) at the prestigious Obafemi Awolowo University and currently rounding up Masters (LLM) in Internet, Telecommunication and Policy at the University of Strathclyde. I am also a member at the United States Institute for Peace (USIP).
Iredumare is a Founding Partner at TechnoLawgical Partners; a boutique law firm which focuses on the Creative Industry and Cyberspace under the leadership of Ms. Oyinkansola ‘Foza” Fawehinmi. I also work for Transsnet Music Limited; the mother company for “Boomplay Music” which is currently building a sustainable ecosystem for music, audio and audio-visual content. I am also involved in numerous creative industry activities, businesses and social courses.
I love reading and listening to music. I am not a popular opinion person. I love food too!
2. Why entertainment law?
To be honest, I did not know entertainment law was a possible option when I started out. I just wanted to do things right with the creative sector and music was the basic one. It is the biggest one and the most used one. So, I became a studio owner to an Artiste Manager (Road Manager in actual sense), did I mention I tried singing too? Rapping. When I eventually was called to the Nigerian Bar, it all made sense because my knowledge of law, the skills acquired studying law and the lawyer finesse made people relate with me differently and trusted my skills. I had experience of the creative world and I had the knowledge of law and I followed where the path led.
I stalked Ayo Shonaiya: foremost entertainment transactional lawyer and he made me know about the existence entertainment law and Africamusiclaw.com owned by Ms. Uduak Oduok refined my knowledge. I also took off from there.
I met Ms. Oyinkansola “Foza” Fawehinmi and Olumide Mustapha who were both lawyers and shared the same passion as myself. We started TechnoLawgical Partners (LegalByte). We took off from there too.
3. Can you give a brief description of your daily schedule?
I wake up by 5;30am. Observe my prayers
Hit the Gym for 1 hour
After, get to work for the day and I try to never miss my prayers
My day usually ends from work between the hours of 11:00pm and 1:00 am
4. What is the most difficult problem you face in your practice and what keep you going?
Having to deal with lawyers who are not entertainment lawyers and will not agree that they are not. They make negotiations and business difficult. Ego won’t make them see that negotiations don’t have to be Win – Lose. It can be a Win-Win. Because you cannot try to make them understand that negotiation is battle of knowledge and in such exchange knowledge can be shared.
I have met a few lawyers who are open to learning and knowledge exchange. I enjoy my sphere of practice and I passionately feel so good doing it
5. In your undergraduate days, you were involved in so many activities in pursuance of your passion. How were you able to combine those with your studies?
I ensured that my extra-curricular activities never eat out of my time for my academics. There was never any conflict for me. I did well with both sides of things. I perfectly balance both without having to let the other suffer. One of my lecturers once said to me “You are training your brain well. Keep it up. It will pay you back in folds”. I held on to it and tolled that too. It really is paying back in folds
6. In your opinion, what prospects do rising practice areas like Sports and Media Law hold?
Nigerians are, first off, creative people before we are anything else. Our culture and historical records points out that we earned a lot from creative Industry and we are still earning so much as Lagos only records 50bn in expenses in the entertainment sector in the festive season of 2017. So, no sector of the industry is left behind in this growth.
As these sectors grow, policies will have to be created to guide transactions and practices in these sectors. Lawyers with innate understanding of how the policies and the practices intersect in business will be on a high demand. So Yes, there is a juicy future for Sports and Media Law.
7. One of the major problems the Nigerian entertainment industry faces is infringement. In your own space, what steps have you taken help your clients curb this menace?
The first thing we do for our clients is to ensure that they are informed and sensitized about the business and what is utmost importance to their business sustainability. When they understand, it becomes a very easy task to protect their works from infringement. They become their own police and we take it from there.
8. What’s your counsel to other law students and young lawyers who wish to delve into the Entertainment Law Practice?
It is a lot of work and it is usually a thankless one. You must be passionate and willing to go beyond the norm, research and be a solution finder. You must be a social engineer as a lawyer in the entertainment industry. Don’t get carried away with the blings and media, 95% is not real
9. Any final words?
Don’t compromise on excellence. It is the one thing everyone is looking for