Mr Peter Mbah, the 50-year-old self-effacing visionary behind Pinnacle Oil and Gas Limited, possesses the vision, grit, tenacity, diligence, self-discipline, and managerial acumen necessary to emerge from relative obscurity and become a dominant player in the downstream sector of the petroleum industry. Vanessa Obioha reports.

Peter Ndubuisi Mbah, founder and chief executive officer of Pinnacle Oil and Gas Limited, an indigenous oil and gas company, addressed students at Godfrey Okoye University in Enugu, Enugu State, to mentor the students and assure them that, despite their current existential limitations, they could have a handshake with the sky. This encapsulated his life path and his development to become one of the most influential leaders in Nigeria’s oil business. Mbah turned 50 years old in March of 2022.

Mbah began his unassuming, incisive sotto voce observations by taking a shuttle into the thorn patch of life he had traversed barefoot.

“What you have effectively requested of me this evening is to recount my tale, particularly the narrative of the most recent chapter of my life, which I refer to as the midlife battle. Joe Girard once said, “The elevator to success is broken; you will have to take the steps… one step at a time.” I will be depending on this immortal remark for my brief conversation with you this evening.

His life history, according to Mbah, represents the short, measured steps of the ladder. “The first step was taken with ease, the second with great pain and discomfort, and the last two were lifted as if taking easy steps; this was my life from the beginning.”

Today, Mbah’s Pinnacle is one of the industry’s major players, having eliminated the need for several operations in the oil business. Mbah’s Pinnacle holds one of the largest oil facilities in Nigeria, with a world-class, gigantic storage facility that has allowed the industry to drastically reduce operating expenses and turnaround time. In addition to providing one of the largest offshore liquid bulk terminals in Africa, the company creates value through its superior services.


Peter Mbah Biography

Young Peter began school at the Army Children’s School, Bori Camp, Port Harcourt, Rivers State, at the tender age of five, and his brilliance caught the attention of the entire school. Peter began reading biographies in Elementary school, the most notable of which was This Life, a voluminous biography of famed Hollywood actor Sidney Poitier, the first Black man to receive the Academy Award for Best Actor in 1964 for his part in Lilies of the Field. This Life is the story of how a poor young man from the Bahamas, who could not speak English well, arrived to the United States, cleaned the streets, begged in shops, and eventually found work as a street cleaner. Eventually, Poitier improved himself and received an Oscar. This story, which Peter read at a young age, pushed him to strive for the top despite the immense existential constraints he faced at the time.

This same man, at the age of 12, was the young boy who confidently told his mother that he would rather drop out of school and begin trading than have his siblings’ education halted because of his admission to college. His parents were at a financial crossroads because his admission to college would mean the end of his siblings’ education. From Port Harcourt, he was sent to a family friend in Lagos, where he lived and worked as an apprentice electronics boy at Alaba Market.

Mbah’s ascent to the summit of his career has not been a cup of tea. Peter has a Bachelor of Laws (LLB) from the University of East London, a Master of Business Administration (MBA) from the IESE University of Navarra, Spain, and a number of other degrees. He has always had a talent for business.