BrandArena: November 2011

Wednesday 30 November 2011

Behold The New Google Bar

World number one search engine, Google has introduce a new simple and classic bar.

On its blog it states: "We’re now ready for the next stage of our redesign—a new Google bar that will enable you to navigate quickly between our services, as well as share the right stuff with the right people easily on Google+.

Instead of the horizontal black bar at the top of the page, you’ll now find links to your services in a new drop-down Google menu nested under the Google logo. We’ll show you a list of links and you can access additional services by hovering over the “More” link at the bottom of the list. Click on what you want, and you’re off.

Making navigation and sharing super simple for people is a key part of our efforts to transform the overall Google experience, which is why we’re very excited about this redesign." it conclude.

Red Star Express Introduces “Scratch For Gift Offer” in Nigeria

In an effort to show its appreciation to its teeming customers during this festive season, Red Star Express Plc, has introduced a sales promo for its customers in the country. The promo tagged ‘Scratch for Gift Offer’ is designed to reward loyal customers nationwide and also strengthen the bond the company shares with their customers.

According to Mr. Sule Bichi, Managing Director of Red Star Express Plc remarked, “Red Star Express has enjoyed great loyalty from its customers and we think it’s time to reward them. In coming up with the ‘Scratch for Gift Offer’ campaign, great attention was paid to credibility of the format for winning, simplicity of the mechanics for winning and excitement of winning to our customers.”
Mr Muyiwa Olumekun, ED Sales & Marketing, Mr Sule Umar Bichi, MD, Mr Sola Obabori, Deputy GM Sales, Mr Sina Lajorin, Deputy GM Logistics all of Red Star Express displaying the card during the occasion.

During the unveiling of the “Scratch for Gift Offer”, the Marketing Manager, Red Star Express Plc, Mrs. Ngozi Ochokwu, reiterated that “It is a simple promo that requires our customers to scratch a card and walk away with instant gifts.” She revealed that “scratch for Gift Offer” is targeted at Cash Customers that send domestic and International packages through Red Star Express offices all over Nigeria.

Speaking further at the launch of the Red Star Express “Scratch for gift Offer”, Mrs. Ochokwu added, “we value our customers so much that we don’t see our duty to serve and deliver quality services to them for their money as an obligation; for us, it is an honour and that is why we hold our customers at such high esteem that reflects on the way we put them first in our service delivery. In return, Red Star Express has enjoyed great loyalty from them and we think it’s time to reward them through a promo as we approach the holiday season.”

The Red Star Express “Scratch for Gift Offer” which kicked off on 28th November, 2011 is expected to have rewarded thousands of Red Star Express loyal customers all over the country by the time the promo comes to an end on 29th February, 2012.
The Unveiling of Scratch for Gifts Offer Promo by Red Star Express took place at the company Head Office in Mafoluku in Oshodi Lagos yesterday    Px shows left Mr Muyiwa Olumekun, ED Sales & Marketing, Mr Sule Umar Bichi, MD, Mr Sola Obabori, Deputy GM Sales, Mr Sina Lajorin, Deputy GM Logistics all of Red Star Express displaying the card during the occasion

Forbes Africa Names Mallam Lamido Sanusi 'Man of the Year'

Forbes Africa has named Governor of the Central Bank of Nigeria, Mallam Lamido Sanusi as its Person of the year.

The CBN governor was rated above two Nobel prize Winners (President of Liberia, Ellen Sirleaf Johnson, and Kenyan Wangari Maathai), a Mo Ibrahim Prize Winner (ex-President of Cape Verde, Pedro Pires), and Forbes richest man in Africa, Alhaji Aliko Dangote.

Sanusi covers the December/January issue of the Forbes Africa magazine with the headline caption reading “a banker unafraid”. Sanusi definitely threw caution to the wind when he prosecuted a sanitization of the banking sector that saw several bank chiefs, and political leaders named, shamed, out of a job and in the courtroom docket.

His modus operandus has earned him the nickname, the Teflon gov, as he seems to be bullet proof even as the public is warming up to his integrity and honesty, characteristics thought to be scarce amongst many public leaders in Nigeria.

Sanusi strategies have subsequently caused him to fall out with the political elite, however even his enemies are beginning to warm up to his largely transparent style of leadership and his integrity opens doors amongst average Nigerians.

The Mallam Lamido Sanusi brand is being touted to have a shot at the presidency either in 2015 or 2019.

D&G Jewelry Tells a Story of a Forbidden Love

Italian fashion brand, Dolce&Gabbana which is well known for its sensual and hot campaigns has released a video, which is soaked in Italian passion.

According to popsop, the new 1:20 spot, is directed by fashion photography celebrity Giampaolo Sgura and starring Bianca Balti and Simone Nobili. It tells a story of a Sicilian woman, who has a sexual relationship with a man, who is obviously not her husband, maybe just a local student, hot and seducing. The woman is getting ready for him to come, puts on black lace apparel, high heels and splendid earrings, then he arrives and they have quick and impassionate embraces on the bed, which are stopped by a voice calling from the outside—a women rushes to the window to see who is there and to make sure that her guest hasn’t been noticed.

The next moment, the lady is at church, wearing her hilarious jewelry and confessing her sins. “It fully succeeds in recounting with poetry—and subtle erotism—a double love story: the one of the woman with her lover and the one between her and the Dolce&Gabbana Jewellery. We know very well which one will last longer,” says, official channel of the brand.

The video is also integrated into the—as the action unfolds, 13 pieces of massive jewelry from the new collection (one after another) appear on the screen along with a large picture and description.

According to AdAge, the spot has generated 5.7 million views in its first 10 days after the release, and so far it has been viewed over 6.7 million times.

Uniliver's Lifebuoy Recognized In Guinness Book Of Records

One of Unliver product, lifebuoy soap enters Guinness world book of records. This is attributed to one of the most remarkable exercise carried out by the company.

Recently in this year, to celebrate the world’s hand washing day, Uniliver went round 600 different schools in Nigeria to produce 37,809 students who assembled at the Tafawa Balewa Square, Lagos.

It was recorded that the total number of pupils who gathered at the square washed their hands at the same time and at the same venue, using the same ingredients; Lifebuoy soap and water.

This exercise is done in a bid to bring to awareness the importance of hygiene amongst youths and children of the nation.

The Managing Director, Unilever, Mr. Thabo Mabe, said, “We know the efficacy of hand washing in combating diarrhea and a host of other diseases; we know the negative impact of diarrhea in this country. Let us continue in earnest to encourage the public by individually telling people in our neighborhoods, our associates, friends and family members to take on this very inexpensive habit that can save life.”

Uniliver promised to continue in promoting the health awareness and hygiene in contribution towards reducing the mortality rate in the country.

Tuesday 29 November 2011

Promasidor Clinch Award of Excellence

Left: Promasidor Nigeria Limited recently received Award of Excellence from University College Hospital (UCH), Ibadan. Picture shows Mr. Stephen Opayemi, General Manager Logistics of Promasidor and Prof. T. O. Alonge, Chief Medical Director of UCH at the event.

Loya Wins Brand Revitalisation Award

Loya milk, a brand of Promasidor Nigeria Limited, has won the Brand Revitalisation Award in the 2011 Advertisers’ Association of Nigeria (ADVAN) Awards for Marketing Excellence.

L - R: Dr. Obinna Anyalebechi, Dairy Category Manager of Promasidor; Chief Edem Duke, Minister of Tourism, Culture and National Orientation and Mr. Kola Oyeyemi, ADVAN President during the presentation of 2011 Brand Revitalization Award to Loya Milk, a brand of Promasidor Nigeria Limited at the ADVAN Awards for Marketing Excellence held recently in Lagos.

The brand was adjudged the winner recently in Lagos by a panel of judges put together by ADVAN to appraise entries for various categories of the awards.

Other brands that competed with Loya milk for the coveted prize are Ribena, Lucozade, Maltina, Yo Yogurt, Nunu and Harp.

The Loya milk recognition is coming on the heels of its on-going “Win Cash with Loya” promo, which is being done to reward and excite its teeming consumers across the country. It is one of the leading brands from the stable of Promasidor, a marketing led and consumer driven organization noted for high quality and innovative product offerings that excite and exceed consumers’ expectations.

Chief Keith Richards, managing director of Promasidor said the launch of “Win Cash with Loya Promotion,” is another way to demonstrate Promasidor’s prowess as an innovative, as this is first of kind in the dairy category.

Mr. Kachi Onubogu, general manager of Promasidor said the objectives of the promo were to reward loyal consumers of the brand as well as create fun and excitement around it.

Loya premium is full cream milk powder manufactured by Promasidor Nigeria Limited –a foremost multinational foods company. Loya premium milk is very rich, truly creamy and extremely tasty. It was first introduced into the Nigerian market in May 2004.

At launch, it contained a rich cocktail of 28 essential vitamins and minerals necessary for healthy growth and general wellness. In October 2010, Loya Premium Milk was re-fortified and re-launched into the Nigeria market.

This relaunch was purely aimed at further increasing the nutritional status of our teeming consumers, primarily by exploring better ways of delivering optimal levels of calcium to our consumers. The emphasis on calcium was driven by research findings that revealed the following amazing cardinal truths.

One, that calcium is the most abundant mineral in the body and 99 per cent of it is stored in the bones and teeth while remaining one per cent is stored in the body’s tissues and intercellular fluid.

Two, women require more calcium during and after pregnancy and also children require generous amounts of calcium in their diet- because it is essential for healthy growth.

Research has also shown that diets in West Africa generally contain relatively low amount of calcium as the mean dietary calcium intakes for urban men and women in northern Nigeria (based on a recent dietary study) were 551 and 447 mg/day respectively, which is lower than the recommended dietary intakes of 1000mg/day for adults.

In addition to low-calcium diets, many populations in sub-Sahara Africa place a heavy reliance on cereal staples, which contain oxalates and other divalent metal cation chelators that decrease the bioavailability of calcium.

A Nigerian Emerge One of the Winners of Siemens ‘Changing Your City for the Better’ Video Contest

A Nigerian with author name, damseremie, has emerge one of the winners of the 'Changing Your City for Better' video contest hosted through Zooppa, the leading source of user-generated advertising through the initiative of a global giant in electronics and electrical engineering, Siemens recently.

The Nigerian won for himself, a prizes won: $ 1500. The Zooppa community of filmmakers was asked to create a video, between two and five minutes long, exploring how improvements in one of the following areas can change any city around the world for the better. He titled his video: 'A short expose on a young's man daily challenges with electricity supply in Abuja, Nigeria's Capital City'.

The contest was a bid to encourage sustainable cities.

Monday 28 November 2011

NIMRA To Hold 2011 Conference

Towards ensuring continuous development in the marketing industry in the country, Nigeria Marketing Research Association (NIMRA) is set to hold its 2011 conference at Sheraton Hotel, Ikeja Lagos.

The round-table event is themed "future of marketing research practice in Nigeria". It will have in presence many bigwigs in the marketing industry in the country.

Executive Director, UAC of Nigeria PLC, Mr. J. I. Dada is the Chairman of the event while the key note speaker is the Chief Executive Officer, Media Reach OMD, Mr. Tolu Ogunkoya and Mr. Sola Akinnagbe, GMD Market Research Consultants Limited is the Guest Speaker.

Friday 25 November 2011

Microsoft Unveils 2012 Imagine Cup Student Technology Competition

In order to continuously encourage students to make a difference in the world through the power of technology, Microsoft has again unveiled the 2012 Imagine Cup technology competition challenging students from around the world to find solutions to the toughest problems of the modern world.

The Imagine Cup 2012 Worldwide Finals will be held in Sydney, Australia, in July 2012.
Photo: Last year’s finalists team, from

The Imagine Cup was launch in 2003 and have seen over 1.4 million students participated in the competition with 358,000 students representing 183 countries and regions registering for the Imagine Cup 2011 competition.

Every year a new country is selected to be a platform for the worldwide competition. To participate in the Imagine Cup 2012 students can choose from three team competitions—Software Design, Game Design: Xbox/Windows, and Game Design: Phone or take on the IT Challenge. Each of the 3 competitions suggests participants to imagine a world where technology helps solve the toughest problems. IT students can take part without a team.

There is also a Windows Phone Challenge sponsored by Nokia. Students are to create software that can make a broad impact in the world. They can also add device-focused utility, and finish with an outstanding Windows Phone user experience.

Participant most be 16 years of age or older to enter the project; any student attending an accredited high school or college (either full-time or part-time) can be a part of the competition. Graduated students are still eligible—as long as they were enrolled as a student between January 1, 2011, and May 31, 2012.

Participants most not also be an employee or intern of Microsoft Corporation, or an employee of a Microsoft subsidiary. Students from all countries except Cuba, Iran, North Korea, Sudan, and Syria can participate.

Judges are typically industry experts, journalists, sponsors, educators, and Microsoft staff from around the world. Students can join the Imagine Cup on Facebook or Twitter. Registration and participation is available on the dedicated web site.

Rihanna Designs Capsule Collection for Armani

Rihanna has teamed up with one of the foremost designers in the world, Armani to design an exciting new capsule collection. Known for her raunchy style, the 23-year-old star has designed a capsule collection for Emporio Armani lingerie, jeans and T-shirts.

According to a reports on its website; a selection of key pieces from Armani Jeans and EA Underwear – inspired by and in collaboration with the Barbados-born Grammy-winning pop star – will be available in shops worldwide by December.

"Rihanna knows that T-shirts can be anything but basic, and the two tees in this collection have been designed not to pass unnoticed: one features a striking motif combining her initial R with the Emporio Armani eagle, and the other is looser, with an animalier background (a pattern Rihanna loves) and a profile of the singer’s instantly recognizable face."

Rihanna was announced as the global new face of Emporio Armani Underwear and Armani Jeans back in July.

Photo source: Armani

 Sebsequently, sexy Transformers star Megan Fox who was stripping down to model the brand's lingerie. Tennis ace Rafal Nadal also featured in the campaign for the designer's jeans wear range, with a picture which shows off his toned torso.

The Emporio Armani lace sets come in two accent colours, pearl grey and cobalt blue. Barely-there bralettes or more solid models skim and support curves, giving them centre stage. And the details are something special: straps feature the message “Rihanna for Emporio Armani” and the back fastening is adorned with her profile and the label’s embossed logo.

Photo source: Armani

As the new face for the Armani Jeans and Emporio Armani Underwear line, Rihanna’s style and taste shines through in these limited edition pieces. That said, this capsule collection is utterly perfect for personal interpretation. Consider it a starting point and run with it.

Apple Announces Holiday Sale For Today, Across The World

Apple has announced a “One-Day Shopping Event” in the US this Friday – but has begun placing banners on its online Apple Stores across the world, indicating that it will be holding a sale this Friday – on the yearly “Black Friday” as it is known in the US. The banners, found on the store page, inform us that this “special one-day Apple shopping event” is this Friday, November 25.

Mark your calendar now, and come back to the Apple Online Store for the special one-day event. You’ll discover amazing iPad, iPod and Mac gifts for everyone on your list.

The banner has gone up on the Australian, Italian, UK and a number of other international stores. No mention has yet been made on the US store, but it is expected to also receive the banner in a number of hours. In the US the Black Friday sale is expected to also take place inside Apple’s retail stores – no mention of the sale in retail stores is made on the Australian or Italian notices.

Thursday 24 November 2011

Finally, Helios Acquires Multi-Links After Months of Tussle

Helios Investment Partners (HIP) has announced its formal acquisition of 100 per cent equity interest in Multi-Links, a CDMA telecom company operating in Nigeria from its previous shareholder, Telkom South Africa.

Following the resolve of the long time issue that trailed the acquisition of the brand by another CDMA operator in Nigeria, HIP finally decided to announce the takeover of the Multi-Links. HIP, which is one of the largest Africa-focused private investment firms, has assets under its management in excess of $1.9 billion.

According to Multi-Links Telecoms Limited, the long awaited transition leading up to HIP’s acquisition of Multi- Links caused uncertainty about the brand that impacted Multi-Link’s brand; stating that the 100 per cent acquisition by HIP, Multi-Links would be repositioned to deliver much better services that it has always been known for.

Multilinks Nigeria, a telecommunications company founded in 1997 to provide handheld and fixed wireless telephone service integrated with high speed Internet service among other services became cash strapped and suffered gradual decline in the telecommunications market, particularly in the face of bourgeoning GSM services in the country.

It had to quickly re-strategise and in 2007, sold majority shares to Telkom South Africa for $410 million. However, Telkom itself after spending up to 9.8 billion rand on the network, could not turn the fortunes around and also had to divest its interest in the company on June 28.

The new acquisition by Helios who has been managing the company under contract, may have ended a legal battle that halted the purported sale of the company to Visafone Communications Nigeria a few months ago.

NBC Bags SGS FSSC 22000 Certification To Mark 60th Anniversary

Nigerian Bottling Company (NBC) has recorded another milestone in the history of food and beverage industry in Nigeria, as it becomes the first ever Nigerian company to win the Societe Generale Du Surveillance (SGS) Food Safety System Certification audit (FSSC 22000). This achievement comes in the heels of the Company’s 60th anniversary of bottling Coca-Cola products in Nigeria.

SGS is the world’s leading inspection, verification, testing and certification company. It is recognized as the global benchmark for quality and integrity. It employs more than 67,000 people and operates a network of over 1,250 offices and laboratories around the world.
L-R: Managing Director, Coca-Cola Nigeria Limited, Mr Kelven Balogun, Director General , NESREA, Dr. (Mrs.) Ngeri Benebo, Managing Director, Nigerian Bottling Company (NBC), Mr. Segun Ogunsanya, Ag. Director NAFDAC, Mrs. Ugochukwu Mainasara and others, during the presentation of the Food Safety Systems Certification (FSSC) to NBC Plc on the Celebration of its 60th Anniversary of NBC, at Apapa Plant Lagos.

The event which took place at the pioneer plant in Apapa had the Managing Director NBC, Mr. Segun Ogunsanya; Managing Director of Coca-Cola Nigeria, Mr. Kelvin Balogun; General Manager, Training and Certification, SGS, Mr. Peter Obiazu; Director General, NESREA, Dr. (Mrs.) Ngeri Benebo; Director Regulatory Affairs, NAFDAC, Mrs. Ugochukwu Manasara; a representative from Consumer Protection Council (CPC) as well as top management team and staff of NBC witnessed the historic presentation.

Speaking at the presentation, the Managing Director NBC stated that, “we are all aware of the track record of the company’s investments in the area of quality, customer satisfaction regulatory compliance as well as maintained benchmark in producing good products. Today’s presentation is a reward for hardwork and high quality compliance. We are enthralled as the first Nigerian company to win this historic FSSC 22000 certification.”

General Manager, Training and Certification SGS, Mr. Peter Obiazu, disclosed that, “NBC has been a responsible company and a benchmark for quality in Nigeria. It is not a surprise that it’s the first Nigerian company to be FSSC 22000 certified. We are happy to identify with the premium bottler.”

The Director General, Consumer Protection Council, Mrs. Ify Umenyi, commended the efforts of Nigerian Bottling Company on development and in ensuring the quality standards of production which has earned the company FSSC 22000 certification.

NBC was incorporated in November 1951 and is a member of Coca-Cola Hellenic S.A, an anchor bottler with the franchise to bottle products of The Coca-Cola Company in 28 countries in North, Central and South Europe, Asia and Africa with over 560 million consumers in these markets.

Wednesday 23 November 2011

Rhythm Unplugged To Thrill Lagosians In December

Premium Lager Beer, Harp sponsored Rhythm Unplugged is set to hold again this year. For the first time ever, there will be two shows.The comedy event will feature United State comedian and actor Mike Epps and other top Nigerian comedians slated for December 18th 2011 at Eko Hotel and Suites.

The second event is a music event featuring Tuface, P-Square, MI, 9ice, Ice Prince, Omawumi, Duncan Mighty, Sound Sultan, Lynxx, Tiwa Savage, Naeto C, Flavour, Jesse Jags and many more. It is slated for 23 December, at Ocean View.

Starcomms Introduces Please Call Me Service

Starcomms Plc, Nigeria’s leading Code Division Multiple Access (CDMA) operator in the telecommunication industry, has launched ‘Please call me’ service in Nigeria, in partnership with Starscriber Corporation, the leading global provider of enhanced ‘Please call me’ services.

Starscriber is an intellectual property and telecom solutions’ company, based in the U.S with offices in Canada and South America offering enhanced “Please call me” services.

This service enables subscribers to send free enhanced “Please call me” messages to other Starcomms mobiles as well as to other network subscribers. It also allows mobile users, with and without credit, to quickly and easily request call backs. Consumers only need to place a call and then end it immediately to use the service. This removes the need for consumers to memorize or input complicated dialing sequences on their mobile phones.

“We are proud to be the first operator in Nigeria to offer enhanced ‘Please call me’ services from Starscriber,” stated Logan Pather, CEO of Starcomms.  “As an innovator in the market, we recognize the need to give our subscribers what they demand – new services which enable them to communicate more quickly and with greater ease.”

Ryan Jones, CEO of Strascriber noted that “the Nigerian market is a key target for Starscriber and for enhanced Please Call Me services. In partnership with Starcomms, we delivered on our promise to give consumers a fast and highly effective value added service while immediately generating new revenue streams for our operator partner.”

Starcomms has been at the forefront of bringing innovative services to its customers. The company has been adjudged since 2007 as the CDMA network of the year by top telecommunication industry watchers.

It is the leader in Nigeria in the provision of mobile data services and has received consistent recognitions and accolades for services in this space since 2007.

DHL Appoints Chizoba Nnamchi to Lead Central Africa

The world’s leading logistics company, DHL has appointed Chizoba Nnamchi (Chizzy) as its new Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of DHL Global Forwarding for Central Africa. In his new role, Chizzy is responsible for the air and ocean freight business in Ghana, Angola, Nigeria, Gabon, Cameroon and the Republic of the Congo where there is a strong focus on the oil and energy and mining sectors. He will be based in Lagos, Nigeria, and takes over from John Cokayne.

According to a release on african press organization's blog today, Chizoba will join DHL Global Forwarding from 3M Company where he had extensive international business management exposure, covering Asia Pacific in his most recent assignment while based in Singapore for eight years.

Thomas Nieszner, CEO of DHL Global Forwarding for Europe, Middle East and Africa, said: “Central Africa is a key growth region of DHL Global Forwarding and we are performing exceptionally well in a challenging environment, with excellent first half year results. It is therefore timely to have Chizzy on board with us to take the business to the next level.”

There is vast potential in the oil and energy and mining sectors in Central Africa. The economy of Ghana was listed in The World’s Fastest Growing Economy in 2011 in the IMF’s tracker of GDP Growth. Oil exploration continues to increase in Ghana with oil expected to account for six per cent of the county’s revenue in 2011. Nigeria is an OPEC member and the 12th largest producer of petroleum in the world and the 8th largest exporter. Nigeria is also the United States’ largest trading partner in Sub-Saharan Africa and supplies a fifth of its oil.

Prior to this, Chizoba founded and led a company in Singapore specializing in consulting for technology business start-ups, licensing, new product management and related joint ventures in Asia Pacific for over a decade. He has also lived and worked in Egypt, Pakistan, Oman and India and now has more than 20 years of experience in the oil and energy, mining and technology sectors.

Promasidor’s Brands Clinch Awards at ADVAN 2011

Two major brands of Promasidor Nigeria Limited, a fast moving consumer goods company, (FMCG) have won several awards at the 2011 Advertisers’ Association of Nigeria Marketing Excellence Awards.

The brands – Cowbell Milk and Loya milk, clinched the Overall Marketing Excellence Award and the Brand Revitalisation Award respectively on Saturday, November 19, 2011 at Oriental Hotels in Lagos.

The Cowbell brand was also adjudged winner in the food and beverages industry category and also emerged second position in the Campaign of the Year-TV category with its Cowbell milk Oyoyoyoyoyo marketing campaign.

Cowbell won based on the evaluation of the panel of judges put together by ADVAN to appraise entries from various aspects of industry categories which submitted entries for the awards while Loya Milk, another brand of the company won the Brand Revitalisation Award because of its HiCal reformulation and it’s on-going N50 million cash promo while Cowbell was adjudged overall winner.

Mr. Kola Oyeyemi, president of ADVAN said the awards were to celebrate the marketing communication industry in Nigeria and make it what the industry should look up to every year.

Dr. Obinna Anyalebechi, Dairy Category Manager in the company of Mr. Andrew Enahoro, Head of Legal and Public Relations both of Promasidor Nigeria received the award among other senior officials of the company and commended the organizers.

Promasidor (Nigeria) Limited, was incorporated in Nigeria in 1993 to manufacture, package, market and distribute fast moving consumer products. Since inception, it has been offering quality and affordable products to its consumers.

It revolutionized the dairy industry with the introduction of sachet packaging of its Cowbell milk, a development which has become the norm in the industry presently. Its products range includes Cowbell milk, Cowbell chocolate, Cowbell flavoured milk drink, Loya full cream milk, Miksi, Onga food seasoning, Top Tea and Amila instant fruit flavoured powdered drink.

Unilever Promote Healthy Living With New Pepsodent

Foremost FMCG Company in the country, Unilever Nigeria Plc has reiterated its commitment to protect over 160 million Nigerian smiles with Pepsodent cavity fighter toothpaste.

Having introduced a new Pepsodent anti-cavity toothpaste, the Company's Oral Care which has over 40 years vast experience in producing toothpaste that provides anti-cavity systems and technology have once again brought in the Popsodent to help improve the oral health of the people.

According to Managing Director of Unilever Nigeria, Thabo Mabe, Pepsodent Anti-Cavity Fighter fluoride toothpaste offers over 50 per cent more calcium in a form (active micro-calcium) that easily fills the tiny, weak, invisible holes, reduces the effects of acids produced by bacteria on teeth, repairs signs of tooth decay, prevents teeth sensitivity and prevents the forming of cavities.

Stating that the introduction of the brand into the market was an attempt to meet consumers’ need for stronger cavity free teeth.

UPS Assigns First Nigerian MD

United Parcel Service (UPS) has announced the appointment of Mr. Ralph Ozuode as the first indigenous Managing Director for its Nigerian operations.

Ozuode’s career with UPS started in August 1991, as an Industrial Engineer, and rose from this position to become Industrial Engineering Manager in 1994. He was promoted to the position of Operations Manager in 2006.

In 2007, he was sent on an International assignment with the Europe Region Strategy Team in Brussels during which period he held assignments in strategy, operations, and business development.

Ralph Ozoude was appointed to the position of Country Manager in 2008 and made significant improvements in UPS logistics network as the company expanded its reach with significant growth in international operations, supply chain and freight.

An alumnus of the University of Jos, Ozoude holds an MBA in Management. He is a member of the Nigerian Institute of Management and Institute of Management Consultants.

A statement from the company stated that Ralph is widely traveled, and brings to the office of Managing Director, management experiences spanning over twenty years. Ralph has attended several trainings and management courses in Nigeria, Europe and America. Under his leadership, UPS is positioned for innovation, operational excellence and accelerated growth, which is the secret of past successes, and road map for the future.

Tuesday 22 November 2011

Great Hope Walk 2011 Holds 3rd of December

The annual Great Hope Walk, an initiative of Hope Worldwide Nigeria (HWWN), a non-governmental, non-profit organization, have slated this year’s edition of the walk for Saturday, December 3rd 2011, with the theme “Support a child, build a great nation”.

The annual event which is in its 11th year running, amongst other things, seeks to raise funds towards meeting the educational, health and nutritional needs of children as well as sensitize Nigerians on the plight of orphans and vulnerable children in our society.

Speaking at the press briefing at HWWN headquarters in Lagos yesterday, the CEO, Hope Worldwide Nigeria (HWWN), Mr. Olaosebikan Clement, stated that the GHW has expanded from just a 10 kilometer walk in Lagos, to a national event attracting thousands of participants in 10 cities in Nigeria including the Federal Capital Territory.

He revealed that “Nigeria has one of the largest burdens of Orphans and Vulnerable Children (OVC) in the world. “This year’s walk, which would attract well over 10, 000 participants, would further increase awareness and galvanize action towards the case of abused, trafficked and children on the streets” he stated.

Where is La Casera Spanish Pear, Classic Cocktail?

Classic Beverages Nigeria Limited (CBNL), makers of La Casera – one of the leading carbonated soft drinks in Nigeria, last year extended its brand with the launch of two flavours, Classic Cocktail and Spanish Pear into the nation’s non-alcoholic beverages market but the brands could not be found lately in the market.

The company recently marked its 10 years anniversary of doing business in Nigeria. It gained a large market share with its Apple flavour and leveraged on its equity to introduce the new entrants, stating that it is one of the ways beverage company has chosen to reciprocate the tremendous support it have been getting from the consumers since making its debut giving customers value for their money and providing them with a wider range of products to choose from.

Classic flavour which reminded consumers of the popular Nigerian cocktail Chapman and Spanish Pear, that was also presented as a real fruit based flavour that can only come from La Casera. when it was introduced it was all over the market shelve, but lately it seemed to have really lost weight.

While some consumers asserted they could not recall the last time they saw the two flavours in the market. Wale Famuyiwa, a Trader at Agege market said: "Its quite a while I saw the La Casera Classic Cocktail and Spanish Pear, I think the Apple flavour still remain the most visible of La Casera products. Maybe they do not produce the other flavours anymore."

Ugochukwu Vincent, a Businessman believes the there is still need for more awareness about the two flavours if they still really enjoy any market sales. "In a recent newspaper advert that I saw, it was only the Apple flavour that was on the publication so I wonder if the Classic Cocktail and Spanish Pear still exist, if they do; then there is still need for more awareness about them. Most times when I’m travelling to the East for my businesses, I most time see the Apple flavours among other brands on the Hawkers.", he said.

Some market observers suggested that the increase in the PET Bottle non-alcoholic beverages products by some other corporate brands like Nigerian Bottling Company’s Sprite, Fanta, Coca Cola, Nigerian Breweries' Fayrouz and Glasco SmithKline's Ribena and Lucozade Boost into the market shelve lately have also contributed to the fading appearance of the La Casera Classic Cocktail and Spanish Pear.

Nollywood Stars, Musicians, Others Grace NB “Hat Trick” Launch

Eko Hotel and Suites was studded with A-list musicians, Nollywood stars and other social personalities recently as Nigerian Breweries Plc event tagged “Hat Trick”.

NB unveiled Heineken Magnum “the only beer that pops,” Fayrouz PET and Legend CAN. Dubbed as the “event that will shake the brewery industry,” it was graced by top socialites and elegantly dressed guests thereby living to its billings.

The dress code for the day was corporate casual and was gorgeously combined with the brand colours by the invited guests. Ladies were clad in beautiful gowns ranging from floral, patterned, knee length dresses and shirts worn on fitted pants. The three colours representing the three brands were clearly and distinctly represented as turquoise, green and burgundy colors of outfits were conspicuously on display.
Heineken man of the world
Some Nollywood Actors at the Hat Trick launch
Omolola Fagade
Bez doing his thing
Yemi Sax
2Face thrilling the crowd

W.AFRI-TEL To Boost Business Opportunities In Nigeria

W.AFRI-TEL, the West African Telecom Exhibition, which takes place from 8-10 May 2012 at the Eko Hotel fair ground in Lagos, Nigeria, will facilitate business opportunities in the telecom sector, enabling exhibitors to gain access to the Nigerian telecom market that contains over 80 million mobile subscribers.
Now in its 11th year, W.AFRI-TEL is the only event of its kind in the region and the flagship event for the ICT sector.

The growth of the Information, Communication and Technology (ICT) sector is at an all-time high in Africa and around the world. Mobile communications markets in Nigeria, Cameroon and the Ivory Coast alone earned combined revenue of US$8.6- billion in 2009, according to business research and consulting firm Frost & Sullivan. This is estimated to reach US$12.6-billion in 2016.

"There are a lot of growth opportunities in both the business and ICT sectors in Nigeria," said Protea Hirschel, ICT industry analyst at Frost and Sullivan, in a recent statement. "Broadband growth alone stands at 23% over the next six or seven years."

Collins Onuegbu, CEO of IT solutions company Signal Alliance, is also optimistic about the sector's future. "Nigeria's economy is growing by 7% annually while other countries are struggling, and one of the growth drivers is technology. There are numerous opportunities in software, telecoms and all forms of infrastructure, and I believe the Nigerian economy must look to the ICT sector for it to develop and grow in the near future."

Government committed to growth

The Nigerian Government is committed to the growth of the ICT sector. Minister of Communications and Technology, Omobola Johnson recently confirmed the newly established ministry will deliver on its mandate to provide robust and efficient ICT infrastructure in Nigeria.

"This includes optimising communications infrastructure in the area of digital content, domestic software applications, the delivery of private and public services, e-business and e-government, and promoting the use of ICT technology in all spheres of life," she confirmed.

"The purpose of this development is to deploy information and communication technology to drive transparency in government, improve the quality and cost-effectiveness of public service delivery and increase the contribution of the ICT industry to the GDP," added Johnson.

Source: Bizcommunity

Monday 21 November 2011

Season II Premiere Ticket Giveaways

Etisalat sponsored Reality TV Show, Nigerian Idol season II will make its movie-premiere style screening on the 27th November 2011.

‘Idol blue carpet’ will be incomplete without our sponsors, friends, followers, esteemed fans of the show, and you in particular! Oh to mention, popcorn, soft drinks and cocktails are also part of the mix for the evening.

Tickets are up for grabs but individuals who wish to participate can only win these tickets by answering correctly the questions. Interested participants are to send the title of the song and name of the original owner of the song through email to:

With participant's name, contact address and phone number. Those who get the answer right are the only people eligible for the premiere.

‘Tymeout With Tee-A Live In Lagos Dinner Concert’ To Hold On 27 Nov.

One of the famous comedian and presenter Tunde Adewale, popularly called Tee-A is set to stunt the city of Lagos as he prepare to host a dinner concert to celebrate his 15th year on stage in the entertainment industry on Sunday, November 27, at the Civic Centre, Victoria Island, Lagos for the Lagos edition.

The event is tagged:‘Tymeout With Tee-A Live In Lagos Dinner Concert’, the dinner concert in Lagos will also see Tee-A be celebrate the first anniversary of the new TV show ‘Tymeout with Tee-A‘ on cable network channel, Africa Magic, DSTV. A ‘The Best Of Tymeout With Tee-A’ DVD will also be unveiled at the star-studded event.

The Lagos concert would feature the comedian and other A-list comedians in the country with musical performances by top Nigerian super star musicians.

The first concert was held in October at the Congress Hall of Transcorp Hilton Hotel, Abuja where Tee-A and other A-list comedians like Ali Baba, Gbenga Adeyinka the 1st, Princess, MC Abbey, Omobaba, Holly Mallam among others entertained guests.

Top Nigerian artistes like eLDee, Mo’Cheddah, Bracket, DJ Zeez, Djinee, Wizkid and Skales also performed at the event.

GTBank To Storm Ogun State with GTCrea8 eSavers Concert

In an attempt to further create encourage youths in Nigeria in saving their money for better use, Guarantee Trust Bank, a leading innovative financial instituion in the country is set for the next edition of the GTCrea8 eSavers concert.

The bank features the 'superstar' crooner, Wizkid and the concert is slated for Thursday, 23rd November, 2011 at the Convocation Grounds, University of Agriculture (UNAAB) Abeokuta, Ogun State.

Ford Motors Kick Off Focus Relay Challenge in Nigeria

Automobile company, Ford Motors has introduced the 2012 Focus initiative with the Ford Focus Relay Challenge in Nigeria. The Relay commenced on November 19 and is to end on December 10 this year as the selected Nigerians get set for a griping race.

Ford Focus Relay Challenge is the first of its kind relay to engage Nigerians with the launch of Ford’s new global car. The challenge, set to be the biggest event to storm the centre of excellence, Lagos this year, will involve some notable personalities in the country.

Subsequently, eight Nigerians from different walks of life have been chosen out of the many that applied for the programme and they are set to experience and manipulate the high tech devices and innovative attributes of the new car to their advantage as they try to win the car. They will split into 4 teams of two each and engage in a contest to win for their team. Each of the four teams is headed by a Team Leader who is an on air personality popularly known as Radio presenter.

Some of the outstanding features in the car include an 8-inch MyFord Touch screen, SYNC, HD Radio, Active part assist, reverse camera, atmosphere lighting inside the cabin and Torque vectoring control. The 2012 Ford Focus car is one with a powerful 2.0 litre fuel-efficient four-cylinder engine that comes in models of S, SE, SEL and Titanium.

Toolz of 99.9 Beat FM, Ik Wildchild of Rhythm FM, Tosyn Bucknor of Top Radio and Mannie of Cool FM are set to lead the team with each of the four playing up their chances.

The unveiling was done on October 12 at Oriental Hotel with a test drive of the highly stable cars done in impressive style. Ayodeji Anthony Oyinlola, Munachimso Ezenwa Okereke, Rukayat Momodu, Isioma Nkechinyem Okeleke, Anabara Stanley Nnamdi, Tunji Meshoye, Adefemi Adekunle Aladelua and Mpi Elizabeth Azuka are the eight lucky ones and two of them who win as a team will get two cars; one for each member of the team, for their effort.

Heineken Announce New UK Marketing Director

Heineken has named Jacco van der Linden, Marketing Director of Nigerian Breweries Plc as its UK marketing director, following a five-month recruitment process.

Van der Linden, who replaces Sarah Warby will take up his new appointment in mid January 2012.

Van der Linden, a thorough marketer and a Dutch national, has held a number of senior international sales and marketing positions since joining the brewer 1999.

His current role is marketing director and executive member of the board of directors at Nigerian Breweries Plc, which he has held since 2008. In his new role, which reports to UK managing director Stefan Orlowski, he will oversee the marketing of brands including Foster’s, Heineken, Strongbow and John Smith’s.

Orlowski, managing director for Heineken in the UK, described Jacco as an accomplished leader and a true commercial professional with experience across sales and marketing, in emerging and mature markets.

“He brings with him a wealth of experience in portfolio management and brand development and will be able to focus on our brands-led agenda, build on our category vision work and further accelerate innovation across the beer and cider categories in the UK.”

In Nigeria, Van der Linden was able to further extend the equity of the brands through the use ideal marketing strategies.

Hyundai in association with The GRAMMYs present RE:GENERATION Music Project

Tapping into the power of music, Hyundai joined forces with music’s biggest brand – The Recording Academy (internationally known for the GRAMMY Awards) – to become its “Official Vehicle Partner.”

The multi-year partnership extends well beyond awards night and will result in original music projects sure to please music fans across many genres and categories. In addition to being the exclusive GRAMMY® vehicle partner, Hyundai is working directly with The Recording Academy to identify and support new projects reflecting the brand’s creativity and desire to celebrate music year-round.

The partnership is being forged as Hyundai launches the 2012 Veloster. The first of many collaborations with The Academy is a unique concept called the RE:GENERATION MUSIC PROJECT that will yield a documentary film called “RE:GENERATION” which follows five modern DJs who – through the use of technology – are changing the way the world creates and experiences music. The project will also create five new electronic music tracks influenced by everything from country to classical. The new tracks include participation from multiple GRAMMY Award winners as they collaborate with each DJ to re-imagine their genre in each DJs’ unique style. You can also listen to the 5 songs on the official Hyundai YouTube channel.

 Hyundai will also be a part of the Pre-GRAMMY Gala & GRAMMY Salute To Industry Icons® event at The Beverly Hilton Hotel the night before the awards telecast. Ten GRAMMY viewing parties in Recording Academy Chapter cities will include Hyundai displays as well. The 54th Annual GRAMMY Awards are set to air live from Staples Center in Los Angeles on Feb. 12, 2012, on CBS at 8 p.m. ET/PT.

adidas To Launch $1 Shoe In India

German sportswear and equipment maker, adidas is to launch a shoe costing one dollar a pair in India, boss Herbert Hainer said, despite the failure of a similar venture in Bangladesh.
The shoe will be sold in villages through a distribution network. It’s not known yet when or where it would be launched. Last year the company rolled out the same initiative but it had not worked as expected.

According to adidas, it has been raising its full-year earnings targets after a stronger-than-expected third quarter and first nine months. It has boosted its sales up to 12% instead of 10% previously, while earnings per share were projected to rise by nearly 16%.

Thursday 17 November 2011

Benetton 'Unhate' Advert Feature Pope, Obama Others in Same-Sex Kisses

Advertisement campaigns are all about being catchy and simple. These have been one of the reasons why emotional and sex appeal is often used by most companies to get maximum attention of their prospective consumers and clients. This might also be the reason that an Italian clothing and retail company, Benetton has launched “Unhate,” a new ad campaign that includes billboards showing unlikely political and religious leaders engaging in bizarre lip-locks.

Photo: Benetton’s UNHATE campaign(President Barack Obama and Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez locking lips)

A press release by the company on about UNHATE worldwide campaign, its stated that the new worldwide communication campaign United Colors of Benetton is to invite the leaders and citizens of the world to combat the “culture of hatred” and creates the UNHATE Foundation.

Photo: Benetton’s UNHATE campaign (Pope Benedict XVI and Ahmed Mohamed el-Tayeb, Imam of the Al-Azhar mosque in Cairo)

The controversial ad. images have been generated attention and receiving condemnation from ire of religious leaders since it was unveiled by Benetton, a company that Ad Age claims has always been known for its polarizing advertisements.  In the past, the company has become well known for its controversial publicity campaigns, which in the past have included the image of a nun kissing a priest and parents grieving over a man dying of Aids.

Protest to Italian clothing firm Benetton over its use of an image of Pope Benedict kissing an imam on the mouth in its latest shock advertising campaign. Vatican spokesman Father Federico Lombardi called the unauthorised and “manipulative” use of the pope’s picture in the photo montage “totally unacceptable” and suggested it might take legal action against the company.

The company announced that the ad featuring the Pope will be pulled. The AP reports: ”The Benetton clothing company has withdrawn an ad showing Pope Benedict XVI kissing a top Egyptian imam on the lips after the Vatican denounced it as an ‘unacceptable’ provocation.”

Photo: Benetton’s UNHATE campaign

The UNHATE communication project includes a series of coordinated initiatives and events, starting on 16 November in the main newspapers, periodicals and websites around the world. The central theme is the kiss, the most universal symbol of love, between world political and religious leaders, such as: Barack Obama and Chinese leader Hu Jintao; Pope Benedict XVI and Ahmed Mohamed el-Tayeb, Imam of the Al-Azhar mosque in Cairo (the most important and moderate centre for Sunni Islamic studies in the world); the Palestinian president Mahmoud Abbas and the Israeli prime minister Benjamin Netanyahu. These are symbolic images of reconciliation - with a touch of ironic hope and constructive provocation - to stimulate reflection on how politics, faith and ideas, even when they are divergent and mutually opposed, must still lead to dialogue and mediation.

The new campaign is the first initiative of the UNHATE project, the new foundation of Benetton, aimed at fostering positive change in communities across the globe and contributing to “the creation of a new culture of tolerance, to combat hatred, building on Benetton’s underpinning values.”

Photo: Benetton’s UNHATE campaign (Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas kissing passionately)

Benetton has also launched the website, which showcases vivid stills and videos from the United Colors of Benetton campaign and events across the globe, as well as has two applications, UNHATE KISS WALL and UNHATE LIST, ‘shaped’ by users of the website. The first application matches two randomly selected photos from those uploaded to the platform, and unites them in a kiss, and the second one is a user-generated list of things and people that are not hated.

Tuesday 15 November 2011

Air Nigeria Links Abidjan Flights to Accra

Air Nigeria has announced the beginning of its new three times weekly flight service to Abidjan via its regional hub in Accra, Ghana to further provide an array of choice for passengers in response to growing demands for convenient connectivity to improve trade ties amongst capital cities in the West African region.

The new Accra-Abidjan-Accra sector which is to come into effect on November 14 will offer onward connectivity to Abidjan as well as save transit time to deliver superior travel experience to customers on the route. In addition to the introduction of the new route, From December 1, 2011, Air Nigeria will also increase its frequency on the direct Lagos-Douala-Lagos to six weekly flights from the existing four flights as well as adding two additional flights on the Cotonou-Doula-Cotonou route.

Dana Air Marks 3 Years of Flight Operations in Nigeria

Dana Air has pledged it’s commitment to improved travel experience for its esteemed guests as well as expansion of its route network during its recent celebrates of three years of successful flight operations in Nigeria .

According to Chief Executive Officer, Jacky Hathiramani, the airline have recorded a good score since commencing business in Nigeria. Hathiramani expressed his appreciation to the airline’s guests, partners as well as other stakeholders in the aviation industry for their patronage and support since Dana Air took to the skies on November 10, 2008.

“As we celebrate our 3rd year anniversary we say thank you to all our esteemed guests and partners. We also appreciate the efforts of the Federal Government, the immediate past Minister of Aviation, Fidelia Njeze, the serving Minister, Stella Oduah, the Director-General of the Nigerian Civil Aviation Authority, Harold Demuren, and other aviation regulatory bodies for their efforts towards creating a viable aviation sector in Nigeria”, he said.

“We will not relent in our efforts but continue to strive to improve on our services and offerings. We are aware of the demand for extension of our world-class services to more Nigerian cities and the west coast, and wish to state that plans are underway to expand our route network in the first quarter of 2012 in line with our growth plan”, Hathiramani assured.

Dana Air’s vision is ‘to be recognized and respected as Nigeria’s most reliable and customer-friendly airline’ and her mission is ‘to earn the loyalty and respect of our customers by consistently demonstrating our commitment to service, and providing affordable regional air transport services that focus on innovation, quality and service excellence’.

Since its inaugural flight from Lagos to Abuja three years ago, Dana Air has grown to become one of Nigeria’s leading airlines operating over 18 daily flights to Abuja, Lagos, Port Harcourt and Uyo, and lifting over 1.26million guests till date.

Brand Quote of the Week:

"Long-term brand equity and growth depends on our ability to successfully integrate and implement all elements of a comprehensive marketing program." - Timm F Crull, Chairman & CEO of Nestle

Monday 14 November 2011

Nigerian Breweries Scores 'Hat Trick' with Heneiken, Legend & Fayrouz

Nigerian Breweries Plc (NB) scored a “Hat Trick” last Friday, 11 November, 2011 when its made a mega launch of three new products at the Eko Hotel and Suite, Lagos.

The highly entertaining brand event led to the unveiling of an innovation in the lager segment of the market called Heineken Magnum, appropriately dubbed “the only beer that pops.” The Magnum comes in the shape of a classic champagne-style bottle complete with cork and cage seal.

Popular stout brand, Legend extra stout had another variant as Legend CAN which was unveiled. Also, was the unveiling of Fayrouz in a new ‘garment’– the PET bottle. These brands, according to an industry analyst, have proved their mettle in the market place and have been positioned as breakaway brands to give consumers the satisfaction they yearn for.

According to Jacco Van der Linden, Marketing Director NB, “Heineken Magnum which comes in 150cl non-returnable unique and innovative bottle allows consumers in Nigeria to actually share a beer for the first time. Since 2003, Heineken has been the No. 1 international premium lager, in the highly profitable and fast growing international premium segment within the Nigerian market.” He added that Magnum contains the same high quality premium Heineken beer and should be served in a special bucket filled with ice and with a special Heineken glass to give that super premium ambience.

According to him, “Beer in a can reaches those places the bottles cannot go as it is non- returnable. We then decided to put the exact same great tasting Legend stout in Can because of the convenience it would afford consumers. We also did this in order to deliver satisfaction to all consumers who desire an affordable and best quality stout.”

As concerning Fayrouz, Van der Linden said the brand was introduced into the Nigerian Market in 2007 as the first malt based soft drink and is available in 33cl bottle and Cans, which were launched in 2009. The brand has been highly successful with an average annual growth of 40 per cent year on year. The payoff is “refreshingly different” taking into cognizance that the brand is the only premium grown up soft drink in the Nigeria market today.

According to Nnenna Ifebigh-Hemeson, Senior Brand Manager Fayrouz, “Farouz is a soft drink that has been specially developed for an adult palate, with no artificial colours or preservatives. It is naturally created to be gently sparkling and to deliver delicious fruit-flavoured refreshment. With its golden colour and foamy head, Fayrouz is the perfect choice for people looking for an excitingly different soft drink. Malted barley lies at the heart of the Fayrouz recipe and is traditionally crafted using pure, clear water to let its flavour build slowly over several days. This helps to give Fayrouz its unique depth of flavour and sweetness as it does not undergo any fermentation process and there is no alcohol in the final delicious product.”

Nigerian Breweries is also involved in the development of leadership, musical and movie talents, through various programmes. Some of these activities are captured in the company’s Social and Environmental Report. As a result of these track records, NB Plc has won several awards as a mark of its good performance in various spheres.

The brand has won the prestigious Nigerian Stock Exchange President’s Merit award for several years. For three consecutive years (2001, 2002 and 2003) it has won the Nigerian Stock Exchange Quoted Company of the year award. It has also won the Nigerian Industrial Standard (NIS) awards for its various products. Also for four years (1999, 2000, 2004 and 2005), the company won Gold in the keenly contested Africa Beer Award organised by Heineken for its operating companies in Africa and the Middle East. In 2002, Nigerian Breweries Plc won the Heineken Business Challenge Award (also known as the Heineken World Cup), a major competition organised for all Heineken operating companies in the world.

The auditience who were present at the event which thrilled by 'Africa Queen' crooner, Tuface Idibia and MI (Mr. Incredible).

Starcomms Offers Upgrade to Higher Data Service at 50 % Discount

Starcomms Plc, Nigeria’s leading Code Division Multiple Access (CDMA) operator in the telecommunication industry, is encouraging its existing customers with non functional 1x USB modems/PCIMCIA/Izap cards to upgrade to EVDO at a discount of 50 per cent of the cost of the hardware.

Customers EVDO, also known as Rev. B as well as Starcomms Izap-plus allows for increased broadband data rates, improved network efficiencies reliability and high speed internet access for residential and business users.

Breakdown of the offer shows that the high speed EVDO modem goes for only N3, 000 as against N6, 500. Customers would have to subscribe to any of the plan that suits their pockets ranging from the Always On plan to the 50 hours plan.

The company noted that the offer would be valid while stock lasts.

Mr. Logan Pather, chief executive officer of Starcomms said that by this offer we are committed to ensuring our data subscribers avail themselves of next generation internet modem that will facilitate super fast and amazing browsing experience. He further said that, retaining existing customers is at the heart of the business as they are the true ambassadors that can tell Nigerians of the better browsing experience they enjoy with Starcomms IZAP.

Starcomms is the leader in Nigeria in the provision of mobile data services and has received consistent recognitions and accolades for services in this space since 2007.

It has also been at the forefront of bringing innovative services to its customers. The company has been adjudged since 2007 as the CDMA network of the year by top telecommunication industry watchers.

GTBank Extend e-banking Channels Package

In line with its efforts to make banking more convenient and value adding, one of the leading innovative bank, Guaranty Trust Bank, have upgraded its Internet Banking platform to now provide “Instant payments to other banks” for its new and existing customers.

This new service enables customers to transfer funds from your GTBank account to beneficiary accounts in other banks within Nigeria in seconds. It is an online real-time platform that allows you to confirm the beneficiary’s account details before consummating your transfers, which can be done from anywhere in the world.

A token (a security device for online transfers/payments) is required to complete all Instant Payment transfers to other banks in Nigeria. This can be obtained from any of our branches nationwide.

Last week, the bank also introduced a value-adding service which enables customers to send and receive funds to and from any GTBank subsidiary in West Africa with the GTBank International Money Transfer (GTMT). GTBank account and non-account holders can walk into any of our branches to transfer and receive funds in Dollars to and from any of our subsidiaries in Nigeria, Ghana, Sierra Leone and Liberia.

According to the bank, it is an effective way of paying for goods and services. Money Transfer is denominated in US Dollars with a maximum of $10,000.00 per transfer and beneficiaries can be paid in US Dollars or local currency – Cedis, Dalasi, Leone and Naira (Beneficiaries can only be paid in local currency in Ghana).

Celebrity Brand Ambassadors: Does It Make Any Impact on Consumers?

With telecommunication giant, Globacom having over 20 Nollywood artistes as its Ambassadors being paid multi-million naira. It is quite interesting to see the rate at which endorsement is growing in the country as more brands adopt the promotional tool too lately.

According to report on Nigeria films, Ramsey Nouah and Chioma Chukwuka Akpotha earns N15 million, while Ini Edo, Rita Dominic, Uche Jombo, Mike Ezuruonye, Funke Akindele being paid N14.5 million, N13 million, N13 million, N12 million; Monalisa Chinda and the two newly appointed a Glo ambassador too, Kunle Afolayan, Odunlade Adekola are paid N10 million.

Before now Chivita, Guinness, Airtel, LG among others leverage on brand endorsement as a promotional model tool by seeking A-List actors, actresses and musicians with the aim of creating increase in product awareness, providing product information, creating an association in the consumer’s mind between the brand and a particular idea as well as handing items to consumers, such as a sample of the product itself, a small gift, or printed information.

This year, the trend was hugely embarked on by more brands, adopting brand ambassadors as part of their way of preserving status and prestige in the competitive world of business. Early in the year, Sasha and Banky became Brand Ambassadors of Samsung, while Ikechukwu, Durella, D’bang, Kingley (former KC Presh), Stephanie Okereke, Agbani Darego also became Brand Ambassadors for Sminoff, Chevalier Brandy, Chris Aire, Grant of London, Kanekalon, Arik Air Nigeria with Kel and Mo’chedda also endorsing Soulmate hair cream respectively.

On the world scene, David Beckham, a man that needs no introduction was signed up by Samsung Electronics Co. Ltd to act as its global brand ambassador. The market leader in consumer electronics and the Worldwide Olympic Partner for Wireless Communications Equipment announced an exclusive agreement with David Beckham to be its global brand ambassador for the London 2012 Olympic Games. Beckham began his ambassador role with immediate effect and presently playing a key part in raising awareness of Samsung’s sponsorship of London 2012 as a Worldwide Olympic Partner.

According to Wikipedia, a Brand Ambassador is an official representative of a brand, a product or a company. His duty is usually to help customers, answer their questions and motivate them to purchases. Brand ambassadors contribute to building brand-awareness, help to customer service and direct promotion. Brand ambassadors are usually paid external employees selected from community of loyal customers or people who know the market and customer needs well.

A Brand Ambassador(s) is someone who embodies the brand he or she is endorsing and most times are personality, employed to provide credible, trustworthy promotion and visibility to a brand with a give and take with her and the brand. Just like they represent the brand’s product, values, style and personality; the brand must reflect the Ambassador’s character as well. This often is an enthusiastic customer who is not hired by the brand but her positive reviews provide grassroots exposure.

No doubt, the whole battle between brands is the war of relevance. The challenge of the marketer is to find a hook that will hold the subject’s attention and gain more market share. Like every other promotional tools, the use of brand endorsement in Nigeria have recorded a huge increase this year.

The question is, does it really have any impact on the customers? While speaking with some consumers in Lagos, many agreed that it sometimes affect there purchase decision making and by this means, have made them to buy more of some of the brands over time.

Dare Oluwole, a Sociologist, believes many brands are seeking for other alternative to be unique in their way of reaching out to their target prospect and thereby leveraging on brand endorsement as a tool to further get them into the mind of their target market.

His words: “The modern world is filled with advertisements, and it is hard to get noticed. Differentiation is difficult to set and so is to get the viewer’s attention. The various marketing tools like magazines, newspapers, billboards, websites, radio and television etc. are all cuddled up to steal even the customer’s smallest fraction of time, so that they can blabber out everything attractive about their product. I think brand ambassador(s) help to extend the awareness of the brands and its working for the brands in Nigeria.”

“I think it is working, if not more companies will not be following the trend and pay so much to have a Brand Ambassador. Personality appeal is an element of advertising that help create a good promotion and patronage from the customer because of the confidence people have in celebrities and always wanting to emulate them”, stated Ishola Adebowale, an Economist.

Felix Chukwu agreed with Adebowale, stating that most youth of today paying attention to most of the top celebrities who are mostly found at latest parties, events, concerts, and movie premieres, hence want to be like them. “Sometimes I found out that I buy some things that I do not really need them and I found out that I buy most of them because I saw them on my role models in the entertainment industry most especially the top artistes like D’Bang, Tuface, Psquare and the likes”, he claimed.

“As for me, I believe it’s not everyone that can be bought over by a brand through endorsement by celebrities. Moreover, some of those celebrities do not use the products at times; they only pretend to be a good customer too - all in the name of brand ambassadors. I don’t see the reason why I would fall for that and go for such products” said, Ugo Daniel, a Business Analyst.

Friday 11 November 2011

P&G Rated High in Labour, Health in Nigeria

One of the leading consumer goods company, Procter and Gamble (P&G) Nigeria, wins the award of the ‘Best Company in community involvement and development–Involving interventions covering the MDG’s (Child-Focused CSR)’ at the 2011 Social Enterprise Report and Awards ceremony (The SERA 2011) held in Lagos recently.

The company also emerged as one of the top three finalists for the categories of Best Company in Labour Practices and Best Company in Health. This year, the theme for the award ceremony was ‘Leading Change: Building Competitive and Green Brands’

According to TruContact, the organizers of the event, theobjective of the awards is to promote corporate investment in the social development of Nigeria.

Speaking before the conferment of the award, Mr. Peter Ogudoro, president of the SERA awards jury explained that the award was conferred on the company based on their commitment to the society and also the originality of its works.

“A good number of those who will win awards tonight, we found that their works were original, impressive and also environment friendly. We are happy with their works and would like to encourage them that success is not a day thing but rather a growth that is constantly under construction especially in the fast racing world we live in today,” Ogudoro said.

P&G’s social responsibility program called Live, Learn and Thrive (LLT) focuses on the development of children of ages 0-13. With its ‘Always Care program’ Procter and Gamble provides feminine hygiene and puberty education to over 700,000 Nigerian girls every year.

The company’s Pampers Baby Care Hospital Program and Mobile Clinics, touch the lives of 1.5 million young Nigerian mothers and their babies annually. ‘Building Futures’ program, a collaboration between P&G and non-profit organization ‘Sponsor a Child’ donates P&G products; Pampers diapers, Ariel detergent and PUR water purifier and provides learning facilities to orphanages across Nigeria.

Procter and Gamble collaborates with non-profit organization, Society for Family Health on the ‘Safe Water for Nigerian Children’ program which has provided over 30 million litres of safe drinking water in Nigeria.

Amber Rose Promotes New Smirnoff Vodka Flavours

SMIRNOFF® Vodka yesterday introduced two new flavored vodkas - Whipped Cream and Fluffed Marshmallow - expanding the brand's arsenal of innovative and delicious flavored vodkas. The world's number-one selling and most awarded vodka brand created the decadent new flavors to offer adult consumers a line of premium spirits that, similar to that memorable bachelorette party or a classic guys' night out, are fun, sophisticated, and cleverly wicked.
Photo: Amber Rose with Smirnoff Whipped Cream and Smirnoff Fluffed Marshmallow bottles,

Model and socialite Amber Rose is the face of the bold and audacious new campaign created to launch the new flavors, bringing to life the luscious and opulent world of SMIRNOFF Whipped Cream Flavored Vodka and the sweet and playful world of SMIRNOFF Fluffed Marshmallow Flavored Vodka.
SMIRNOFF is implementing a full marketing mix, including television, radio, print and online advertising as well as public relations in support of its launch of SMIRNOFF Whipped Cream and SMIRNOFF Fluffed Marshmallow Flavored Vodkas.

Durban FilmMart 2012 Calls For Submissions

Dates for the third edition of Durban FilmMart have been confirmed for 20-23 July 2012, during the 33rd Durban International Film Festival (19-29 July).

This partnership project between the Durban Film Office (DFO) and the Durban International Film Festival (DIFF) provides filmmakers from across Africa a valued opportunity to pitch projects to financiers, distributors, sales agents and potential co-producers.

Over 200 industry professionals attended the successful Durban FilmMart of 2011, participating in meetings, project presentations and a series of master classes and workshops on latest trends in film finance, marketing, distribution and new media technologies.

Durban International Film Festival manager Nashen Moodley has also been appointed as director of the Sydney Film Festival. Previously a journalist at Independent Newspapers, for whom he still writes film reviews, Moodley has been centrally involved in the development and management of Durban International Film Festival programmes since joining the University of KwaZulu-Natal’s Centre for Creative Arts in 2001.

DFM calls for submissions of both feature-length fiction and documentary projects (including animation). Selected projects will be invited to pitch projects in one-on-one meetings with potential investors within the Finance Forum segment of the programme.

Entry is open to projects in which either producer, director or writer is an African citizen. Proof of African citizenship or birth must be provided through a certified copy of a valid African passport/ birth certificate, Africans living in the Diaspora, but who still have African citizenship or have proof of birth in Africa and projects with a producer attached.

The closing date for submissions is 15 February 2012.

For more information on the Durban FilmMart and project submission criteria and processes please visit or e-mail: or; Tel: 031 311 4243 Fax: 031 311 4092

Wednesday 9 November 2011

Advertising Media Industry Lost Another Great Man

Alan McLarty, who until his death was managing director of Mindshare (the media agency formerly known as Initiative Lagos), is another great lost that befall the advertising media industry. Alan passed on early morning last week after what appears to have been a brief illness.

Alan came to Nigeria from South Africa in 2003 to join Lowe Lintas as Media Director from where he went on to establish the pioneer agency’s spin-off media independent, Initiative in 2004. A thorough bred professional in media strategy and planning, Alan has been involved in the media business for close to 4 decades.

Prior to joining Lowe Lintas and Initiative, he was consulting for HerdBuoys McCann-Erickson, Optimedia and Capro in South Africa. Before this he launched and ran Universal McCann in South Africa. His experience trail includes time at McCann-Erickson (twice), Whitehouse (Creative Hot Shop), O&M, Campbell Edwald, Adpro (Creative Hot Shop), BBDO, JWT and the Cape Argus Newspaper.

On the client-side his experience includes stints at Unilever, SAB (Amstel, Heineken), General Motors, Woolworths, Vodacom, McDonalds, Michelin, Gillette, Motorola, L’oreal, Smirnoff, J&B, Chivas Regal, Captain Morgan, Olmeca Tequila.

He has worked with the industry currency, the AMPS Media research data since 1975 and his experience dates back to the days of manual data analysis and spreads to the introduction of Peoplemeters using the latest Telmar and Transmit suites of software.

He continuously contributes to training-in-house for clients and through industry associations and was a very active member of the Media Independent Association of Nigeria (MIPAN).

In Nigeria, he has successfully led the media agency from its inception winning big accounts like Friesland, Unilever, Ovaltine, Telkom, Nigerian Breweries and many more. He recently concluded the agency’s affiliation with the Mindshare global network necessitating the company’s change of name from Initiative to Sharemind.

He will be greatly missed by diverse sections of the ad industry in Nigeria and South Africa including professional colleagues, media owners and clients.

Teaze Couture Unveils New Fashion Collections in Lagos

Following its recent berth into the Nigeria fashion industry, Teaze Couture, a fashion line pioneered by Ayotunde Omitogun and Omotunde Hamid have promised to offer its customers more trendy, classic and colourful wears for the festive period, weddings, birthday and other social events .

Teaze Couture is one of the new Nigerian fashion go-to brand for top fashion and innovation nationally and internationally. . In line with its achieved success, it is announced a discount on all purchases from November 1, 2010 till January 30, 2011.