Engr. Simeon Obiora Atakulu was born on 14th September, 1952 in Nimo, Anambra state, a citizen of Nigeria residing in Nigeria. Holds a BSc degree (1978) in mechanical engineering and an MBA in Technology and Management. A fellow of both Nigerian Society of Engineers and the Institution of Mechanical Engineers. Currently a consultant in the power sector.
He began his engineering career in 1980 with NEPA at Sapele Power Station where he rose to Principal Engineer. He engineered and managed the first turn-around works of 4x120MW plants that restored station capacity; reduced unit turnaround time by three weeks and developed an optimization/efficiency improvement scheme resulting to an improvement of 2.5% which became the standard for performance management.
In 1987 he was deployed to the bigger, more modern Egbin Station (1320MW) where he rose to become Chief Engineer/Plant Manager in (1999). In 2006 became the CEO for Lagos Generation Region.
At Egbin he designed and constructed an electric powered hover-craft system complete with work station and tools. He adapted the German Metalloc technology for turbine and pump casing repairs providing savings of over N300million. He presented the solution at International Pump Symposium/Expo in Houston, Texas.
In 1995 he pioneered the first 30/70% OEM/local personnel turn-around for Egbin with a cost reduction of $25million; it became the foundation for the proposed National Electricity Service Company to support power plants locally and regionally.
In 1998 he designed and constructed a test module and program for diagnosis and analysis of flow condition in Hitachi Ltd turbine control system. Hitachi has adapted this into its advanced turbine-hydraulic control test and repair protocol. Hitachi Corporation in 2001 recognized Engr. Atakulu and invited him to the prestigious workshop for Turbine Control Design and Optimization in its famous Japanese Hitachi turbine control and optimization laboratory.
In 1999, he was the best performing generation engineer in the Authority. In 2005, his Plant was the best performing power plant in Nigeria and among top five best performing plants in Africa hence given grant of $2.5million for performance improvement.
In 2006, he became Pioneer Project Manager (Generation) for development of five National Integrated Power Project (NIPP) greenfield power stations.
Engr Atakulu was in 2008 appointed into the Transition Board to oversee the commercial transformation of Power Holding Company of Nigeria (PHCN). As Executive Director Operations, he transformed operations to improve power supply and revenue by 25% within three months.
After retirement in 2009, he became consultant to Department for International Development (DFID) of UK in 2010 where he supported the Presidential Task Force on Power and The Power Supply Project for Northern Nigeria. He contributed to the National Roadmap on Power and prepared the Energy Masterplan and Energy Policy for Kaduna and Kano States.
In 2017 he became consultant to the World Bank supporting Power Sector Recovery Plan (PSRP) and the Nigeria Electrification Project (NEP). He prepared frameworks for RESETTING the Power Sector after privatization.
He has published many papers in power generation, management and policy.