In a colourful ceremony held last Friday at the Eko Hotel & Suites, the Publisher and Chief Executive Officer of Businessday, Frank Aigbogun and the Chief Executive Officer of the Nigerian Stock Exchange, Oscar Onyema, presented the award to Segun Ogunsanya, Chief Executive Officer & Managing Director of Airtel Nigeria.
In a citation in honour of Airtel, the organizers said “Businessday particularly identifies with Airtel Nigeria for its role in driving economic development and employment opportunities. Nigeria dearly needs success stories like Airtel to inspire young Nigerians who are growing up in a society with far too few role models.”
“This country benefits when companies like Airtel are applauded because it represents a different narrative, a positive one, in contrast to those that have soiled our reputation.
The Businessday Next Bulls Awards follows an informal, proprietary survey carried out by Businessday analysts on 1,000 respondents. Several respondents identified Airtel Nigeria as a company whose stock they would like to own in their dream equity portfolio for long-term holding if the choice was limited to only 10 companies.
Speaking at the awards, Aigbogun said the goal of the Businessday Next Bull’s award is not to induce winners to embark on a premature IPO journey. Instead, Businessday and the NSE hope that the Awards will spark a fresh debate on which incentives and conditions companies like Airtel would like to see before giving an IPO serious consideration.
In his response, Airtel CEO, Ogunsanya, commended the organizers of the award just as he dedicated the award to the company’s over 40 million customers, employees and other critical stakeholders.
“I dedicate this award to the entire staff of Airtel; thank you for all that you do for this great company every day. I also dedicate this award to our over 40 million customers who chose us and have entrusted us with their daily communication needs, thank you. I would also like to say a big thank you to Business Day and the Nigerian Stock Exchange. Thank you for recognizing our efforts. We will continue to keep the flag flying,” he said.