BrandArena: June 2013

Saturday 29 June 2013

EbonyLife TV To Launch On DSTV Platform On 1st Of July

EbonyLife TV, Africa’s first global black entertainment talk show host by Mo Abudu, is set to launch across Africa on the DSTV platform (Channel 165) on the 1st of July 2013.

While Forbes is to celebrate Africa’s best at EbonyLife TV launch on June 30, 2013 in Lagos, after months of intense research and a thorough verification exercise, the award will be presented by Steve Forbes of Forbes Media.

The award will witness the celebration of important personalities who have and continue to have significant influence on the media, entertainment, business, political and economic landscapes of the African continent.

Photo Of The Week: BATN Foundation Holds 10th Anniversary Lecture, Rotary Club of Lekki Phase 1 Recognition Award Ceremony, Etisalat Sponsor Event

Keynote Speaker/Director, Euro-China Centre for Leadership and Responsibility (ECCLAR), Professor Mike Thompson; Founder/Director, AACE Foods, Mrs. Ndidi Nwueli; Director, Etisalat CSR Centre Lagos Business School (LBS), Dr. Chris Ogbechie, and Chief Executive Officer, Etisalat Nigeria, Mr. Steven Evans, at this year’s International Sustainability Conference themed ‘Sustainability Management in Growing Emerging Markets’, held at the LBS, Pan-African University on Thursday, 27th June, 2013

From Left: Director General, Nigerian Economic Summit Group, Mr Frank Nweke Jnr, Managing Director, BAT Nigeria, Mr Keith Gretton, and Founder/CEO, Centre for Values in Leadership, Prof Pat Utomi at the BATN Foundation 10th Anniversary Lecture on “Role of Private Sector in Poverty Reduction,” at the Pan Atlantic University, Lagos June 25, 2013

From Left, Outgoing President, Rotary Club of Lekki Phase 1, Rotarian Wilson Akhator-Eneka; Incoming President, Rotary Club of Lekki Phase 1, Rotarian Mariam Abdulai; Principal, Ogombo Community Junior High School, Ogombo Eti-Osa, Mrs. Olubusi Beatrice Adefolake; and Public Relation and Marketing Manager Intel West Africa, Adim Isiakpona; at the Rotary Club of Lekki Phase 1 Recognition Award Ceremony held in Lagos on Thursday 26th of June 2013

Close Up set to break World Record with Teeth Brushing Challenge

Leading oral care brand, Close Up toothpaste, has reiterated its commitment to promoting a healthy oral care culture. This came against the backdrop of the World Record breaking Teeth brushing challenge slated to hold on July 4  in partnership with Lagos State government, Nigerian Dental Association (NDA), HEIT Solutions, Vas2Net &  Core Media.
Founder, HEIT Solutions, and Project Head, Lagos World Record Teeth brushing Challenge, Dr. Lawal Bakare; Category Manager, Oral Care, Unilever Nigeria Plc, Mrs.Oiza Gyang; and Brand Manager, Close Up, Mr. Dexter Adeola, while announcing their participation at the forthcoming World Record Teeth Brushing Challenge at the Unilever Office on Wednesday, June 26, 2013
The challenge is expected to bring together 300,000 students who will brush at the same time at different locations. The latest World Record on such feat was done in India where an event brought together 177,003 people to brush their teeth at the same time. Nigeria hopes to smash this six-year-old record with the Teeth Brushing Challenge.

Speaking during the press conference to announce the forthcoming Tooth brushing Challenge, Ozia Gyang, Category Manager Oral Care, Unilever Nigeria, makers of Close Up toothpaste and other household brands, said that Close Up was putting its weight behind the Challenge as a way of re-emphasising the importance of healthy oral hygiene and regular care of the teeth and mouth by brushing twice daily. She said that the Challenge was in line with the brand’s ‘Brush Twice Daily’ campaign.

Dexter Adeola, Close Up Brand Manager, who also spoke, said that Nigerians should join hands to make the World Record Tooth brushing challenge a success. He urged Nigerians to show their support by brushing twice that day and every other day.

Adeola went further to say that the benefits of brushing twice daily cannot be over-emphasised as a healthy mouth, gum and teeth play a huge role in the overall health of an individual.

In preparation for the Challenge, 300 secondary school teachers have undergone a special Teacher’s Alignment Training Session so as to host the event. The teachers have also been informed of the World Record standards for counting the number of students brushing in each school, the designed model for the tooth brushing as well as the waste recycling element to the attempt.

Close Up has, for over 38 years, been a household name for Nigerians families. This Challenge will go down in history in Nigeria and around the world, as one of the most memorable highlights that showcases the way Close Up loves Naija.

GE announces Expansion with New Office Space to Support Growth

General Electric (GE), a global leader in infrastructure technology, services and solutions, recently announced its relocation to a new office space to accommodate the rapid growth of its operations in Nigeria. The new office space located in Victoria Island, Lagos, will provide capacity for the expansion of the company’s capabilities.

Speaking during the commissioning of the new office space, President and CEO, GE Nigeria, Dr. Lazarus Angbazo, said that the company’s aggressive growth plans for Nigeria, has necessitated moving its operations to a larger facility. He added that the move to such a world-class office facility was in line with GE’s efforts to invest in their local presence.

Angbazo further said, “In growing our operations in Nigeria we started making decisions locally that reflect our commitment to the development of key infrastructure that will boost the economy, as well as add several thousand more jobs to the country.’’

GE has been operating in Nigeria for over 40 years with businesses spanning across a number of key sectors including aviation, energy, healthcare, power & water and rail transportation. However in the past 2 years the company has renewed its focus, built new service facilities, and employed more people. Its footprint consists of over 350 employees, offices in Lagos and Abuja as well as service facilities in Port Harcourt and Onne.

GE’s expansion to the new office space in Lagos mirrors their continued growth and focus in Nigeria. The company recently marked a major milestone in its $1bn investment commitment by holding an official groundbreaking ceremony of its proposed manufacturing plant in Calabar. The event was presided over by President Goodluck Jonathan who was represented by Vice President Namadi Sambo. 

Heineken shines at Cannes Lions Festival of Creativity 2013

HEINEKEN has reinforced its strong creative credentials, with a total of 17 prestigious awards won at the 2013 Cannes Lions International Festival of Creativity. The record number of wins for the company included Heineken’s first ever Grand Prix in Creative Effectiveness for its ‘Open Your World’ global integrated campaign and a Gold Lion PR for ‘The Candidate’, which was also selected for a TITANIUM and INTEGRATED BRONZE award.

The ‘Legendary Journey’, part of the ‘Open Your World’ campaign, encapsulates Heineken®’s approach to asking its drinkers to live beyond their boundaries, inspiring men across the world to seek new experiences. The campaign was developed in partnership with Wieden + Kennedy, Amsterdam.
‘The Candidate’, created with Publicis Italy and activated by Edelman London, outlined the brand’s creative and unconventional approach to recruitment. It was released earlier this year and rapidly became a global viral and PR sensation, amassing 2.8m views within 7 days and unprecedented global media buzz.
The Cannes Lions International Festival of Creativity is the world's biggest celebration of creativity in communications. At this year’s event, more than 35,000 entries from 92 countries were showcased and judged.
Heineken’s investment in design and innovation was also recognised and celebrated. Its futuristic ignite bottle picked up Silver for its use of Exhibitions or Live Events and Bronze each for its Your Future Bottle and The Wall of Opportunities activations.
Alexis Nasard, Global Chief Marketing Officer and President Western Europe at HEINEKEN, commented: “We are delighted by this recognition. Creativity is a decision which entails risks. These awards, and more importantly, consumers' choice at every consumption opportunity vindicate these decisions. Clients get the creativity they deserve from their agency partners, and we are thus thankful to both our agency partners and our employees for keeping the bar high, and keeping us and our brands part of the conversation'.

Etihad Airways Again Tops Skytrax First Class Awards

Etihad Airways has swept the Skytrax World Airline Awards’ First Class category, receiving all three awards, for the second year in a row.

The Abu Dhabi-based airline took home the coveted title of Best First Class for the fourth consecutive year, as well as taking home top honours for Best First Class Seats and Best First
Class Catering.

The awards, which are voted on by travellers from more than 160 countries, were presented at the Skytrax World Airline Awards ceremony today at the Paris Air Show. Peter Baumgartner, Etihad Airways’ Chief Commercial Officer, said: “It is a huge accomplishment to take home the top honours in every First Class category again, underlining our leading premium product proposition.

“Etihad Airways has, in just 10 years of operation, risen rapidly in the Skytrax rankings because we are continually investing in innovative new product and service concepts. We believe that world-class hospitality should not be limited to hotels and restaurants, so we are elevating the travel experience by bringing the best of hospitality to every touch point in the journey.

“The Skytrax World Airline Awards represent a global benchmark for airline excellence because they go straight to the source – the traveller. To be recognised and named by our guests as the best in the world is an affirmation of the value of our unique philosophy and innovation.”

Etihad Airways continues to win global recognition for offering a five-star restaurant style of service in its Diamond First Class cabins with personal inflight Chefs. The Chefs use fresh organic produce, eggs and honey sourced locally from Abu Dhabi Organic Farms to prepare dishes based on passengers’ individual taste and preference.

Monday 24 June 2013

Editorial Movement At The Sun

The Board of The Sun Publishing Limited has approved new editorial appointments with effect from 1 July 2013. On that date, new editors will take over at different levels, of the publication.

According to Tony Onyima, managing director/editor-in-chief, the new appointments "are aimed at driving our growth strategy and the board's vision of transforming the company into top rate media and entertainment organisation".

The new editors are: Onuoha Ukeh, Daily Sun, Bruce Malogo, Saturday Sun, and Abdulfatah Oladeinde, Sunday Sun. There are also new deputy editors, News editor, editorial page editor, political editor, business editor, while the erstwhile editors, who served the company meritoriously, have been assigned to fresh duties.

Ukeh, editor of Saturday Sun since 2008, moves up as editor of the daily newspaper. An alumnus of the Yaba College of Technology, Nigerian Institute of Journalism, Ogba, and Lagos State University, Ojo, from where he holds degrees in Book Publishing and Journalism, respectively, the new editor of the daily newspaper comes in with more than two decades of experience tucked under his belt.

Before he joined The Sun as assistant editor in 2003, Ukeh had worked at Post Express as metro editor, chief sub-editor, and editor of the daily paper, respectively. He was also at Champion newspaper, Sentinel Magazine, and The Guardian.

Ukeh also holds a Senior Management Programme (SMP) certificate of the Lagos Business School, and is co-author of three books, Inside the Newsroom, Democracy of Our Land, and God's General.

Source: allAfrica

Friday 21 June 2013

Sony Moves International Media To MediaCom

Sony has awarded the global media planning account for its mobile arm and the European media business for its electronics division to MediaCom, following a competitive pitch process.

Sony Mobile: global media planning account moves to MediaCom
Sony has selected WPP's Mediacom to handle media for its worldwide mobile business and support electronics in various global markets.

Sony said: "As we seek to further leverage the synergies across the Sony product portfolio, following a review of its media-buying agency support, Sony Mobile (global) and Sony Electronics (Sony Europe) has appointed MediaCom as its partner for media buying requirements, covering global and European remits respectively. The partnership will commence June 2013."

The media activity for Sony PlayStation and Sony Pictures was not included in the review process.

The move to review both mobile and electronics came on the heels of an organizational shift within Sony Corp. In 2011, the company announced plans to acquire Ericsson's shares of mobile group Sony Ericsson. A year later, the Sony Ericsson group became a wholly-owned subsidiary of Sony Corp.

Cannes Lions Names Youtube's Salar Kamangar as Media Person of the Year 2013

The Cannes Lions International Festival of Creativity is the world's largest and most prestigious annual awards and celebration of creative excellence in advertising and communications. Every year, the Festival organisers present The Media Person of the Year Award to a prominent personality who is an influential figure in the development of today's media landscape, ultimately playing an integral part in shaping the future of the industry.

This year, Cannes Lions is proud to honour YouTube CEO Salar Kamangar, who leads the video community that 1 billion people across the globe use to access information, share video, and shape culture.

Founded in 2005, YouTube was acquired by Google the following year. Since taking the role in 2009, Salar has overseen the expansion of YouTube into a global broadcast platform. Under his leadership, YouTube's site design and its investments have been reshaped to focus on channels and the emerging content creators behind them. YouTube's usage has been increasing at tremendous rates, to six billion hours of video watched each month, a 50% increase over the past year. YouTube has also launched TrueView, the advertising format whereby advertisers only pay for ads watched, and has doubled the number of advertisers using it in the last year.

Philip Thomas, CEO of Cannes Lions says, "YouTube has become a global phenomenon under Salar's leadership. The statistics say it all: more than one billion unique users a month watch more than six billion hours of video. In 2011, YouTube had more than one trillion views - a simply staggering statistic. But YouTube is more than a formidable communications tool of everyday life.

YouTube has become a key way for people throughout the world to share their cultures and stories, helping us understand and connect with one another. And for businesses, YouTube is enabling the next generation of great channels, similar to how cable systems enabled the emergence of modern TV programming and advertising. In the coming years, YouTube will surely become ever-more important to content-creators and advertisers the world over, and so Cannes Lions is delighted to recognise Salar's achievements and present him with the Media Person of the Year award."

Salar Kamangar says, "Content creators and advertisers alike are building successful YouTube channels that tap into a global community of fans, with more than one million of these channels now earning revenue. I'm delighted to accept this award not just on behalf of YouTube, but on behalf of the artists and producers across the world whose creativity has established YouTube as the global destination for video."

SPAN, 7up, Indomie, Others Support Youth Creativity in Lagos

As part of its contribution to human development and skill acquisition to reduce poverty, the Society for the Performing Arts in Nigeria, SPAN, a non-governmental organization, through the support of its numerous partners recently graduated its first set of 20 students. The event also created an opportunity for SPAN to reflect the world-class standard of creativity amongst the youths in Nigeria at the prestigious Eko Hotels & Suites in Lagos.

The attendance had a combination of brand custodians, entrepreneurs, investors, corporate organisations, members of the diplomatic community and notable high profile personalities which included the likes of Mr. Gabi Massoud, Mrs. Sandra Obiago, Pastor Wale Adefarasin and Mrs. Olufunmi Olajuyegbe among others. SPAN also used the occasion to showcase its abundance, fused in artistic experience with a heightened sense of humanity and social responsibility, as the branded students all dressed and full of skills ready to bow up thrilled the audience all the way.

According to the founder of SPAN, Mrs Sarah Boulos, “In our today, we are defined by what we do more than who we are and that is the rationale behind the education of Nigerian youths to achieve greatness in all that concerns them, and create opportunities for them to dialogue, develop, and overcome limitations using the performing arts as a healing and transformational tool.”

Boulos stressed that the 2013-2014 Season will be filled with education programmes followed by rewards and awards to inspire the pursuit of excellence, so that more men from underprivileged communities can stand tall in the sunlight of achievements, contributing great impacts that affect and change society.

Some of the top patrons and sponsors behind the trainings and creative abilities of SPAN include Indomie, SCOA, Seven-Up Nigeria Bottling Company, Cool FM, Mountain Dew, I.T.B Nigeria Limited, Tropic Ice, Audio Visual First (AVF), GEA, Chellarams, Aleeco Nader, CIS Group, Group Fadoul and Netcom to mention a few.

Mouka Donates Mattresses to Lagos NYSC Camp

As part of its contribution to youth and education in Nigeria, Mouka Limited, today (June 21), donated mattresses to Lagos state, National Youth Service Corps (NYSC) camp in Iyana Ipaja.
L-R: Assistant Director/ Head Corps Inspection and Monitoring, NYSC, Lagos State, Bayo Adenaya; State Co-ordinating Officer, NYSC, Lagos State, Adenike Adeyemi; Managing Director, Mouka Limited, Peju Adebajo, and Assistant Director/Head, Public Relations, NYSC, Lagos State, Belenda Faniyi at the donation of Mouka mattresses to NYSC Lagos State Camp, Iyana Ipaja, today, June 21st, 2013

Emirates Takes Home 2013 ‘World’s Best Airline’ Award

Cementing its place as one of the world’s leading international airlines, Emirates has today been awarded the highly coveted ‘World’s Best Airline’ award, presented by Skytrax at the 2013 World Airline Awards.

In addition to winning ‘World’s Best Airline’ Emirates scooped up a further two awards including; ‘Best Middle East Airline’ and for a record ninth year in a row, ‘World’s Best Inflight Entertainment’.  The awards were collected today by Tim Clark, President Emirates Airline at the Paris Airshow.
Emirate receiving the Skytrax Award
The Skytrax World Airline Awards polled over 18 million business and leisure air travellers from more than 160 countries “Being honoured with these awards is testament to our unrelenting effort to be the world’s best airline,” said Mr. Clark.

“These awards are widely regarded as the industry’s benchmark for excellence. For us, the awards clearly reflect a vote of confidence from global travellers, who acknowledge and appreciate our continuous drive to deliver high-quality service. To be voted ‘World’s Best Airline’ by millions of discerning travellers really is something for our 60,000 strong workforce to be proud of,” added Mr. Clark.

Since launching in 1985, Emirates has grown into one of the largest and most dynamic airlines in the world and has transformed Dubai into a major connecting hub for global air travel.

Last year over 39 million customers flew with Emirates, connecting across the airline’s global network and enjoying the airline’s extensive onboard innovations, including the industry leading inflight entertainment system ice, offering over 1,400 channels of entertainment.  

West Ham United and Alpari Underline Ambitions With New Kit Launch

West Ham United has underlined the club’s ambitions both on and off the pitch with the launch of its new team strip for the 2013/14 season. Mirroring the iconic strip worn in 1985 when the club achieved its best final league position, the new adidas kit also highlights the club’s commercial goals which it shares with new shirt sponsor, the global forex broker Alpari.
Image source: alpari
It is an agreement that strengthens mutual global ambitions for both Alpari and West Ham United, giving the iconic east London side the opportunity to promote itself to Alpari’s growing markets across more than 20 countries.

The new team strip marks the start of Alpari’s three-year multi-million pound principal sponsor agreement with the club. The deal extends Alpari’s involvement with the club from a stadium brand and naming rights partner to main shirt sponsor.

As the Barclays Premier League has broadcast distribution reaching more than 700 million households, it also gives the Alpari companies a platform to increase exposure in its key regions for expansion, including China, Central and South America.

The club is also building to replicate that on pitch success too. The new team strip comes at an exciting time for the Barclays Premier League club as the 2013/14 season also sees the start of Alpari’s three-year multi-million pound principal sponsor agreement with the club. The deal extends Alpari’s involvement with the club from a stadium brand and naming rights partner to main shirt sponsor.

adidas Aims For World Cup boost, Targets Record €2bn in Football Sales

German sportswear brand, Adidas has announced that it expects to achieve a record €2 billion (£1.7bn) in sales from football products in 2014.

The company made this announcement on Tuesday stated that it aim to use the World Cup to prove its great football expertise and to show fans the technological know- how and creativity that adidas consistently delivers at the cutting edge of football.

Herbert Hainer, CEO of the adidas Group, said the FIFA World Cup is the perfect stage to showcase the company, "our brands and our products. adidas is the clear no. 1 in football globally – in terms of sales, innovative power and brand visibility. Through the World Cup we will once again underline our leading position and share our passion for the game with fans around the world."

Starting in the second half of 2013, adidas will be launching a constant stream of new and innovative football products for the World Cup. 

Google Celebrates 10th anniversary of AdSense

Google recently celebrated 10th anniversary of AdSense, an advertising business launched to help publishers earn money by placing relevant ads on their websites.

"Fast-forward 10 years, and AdSense has become a core part of Google’s advertising business. The AdSense community has grown to include more than 2 million publishers, and last year alone, publishers earned more than $7 billion from AdSense. AdSense is a community that thrives because of all the content creators we are so fortunate to partner with. Their stories inspire us to do our part to make AdSense great," said Susan Wojcicki, SVP, Ads and Commerce on a post on its official blog.

"I can still remember the excitement and anticipation as AdSense went live that first day. Our small team huddled together in a cramped conference room, and right away we saw that publishers were as excited about AdSense as we were", she said.

Photo Of The Week: Market Rollout of, GE Sign Agreement with NSIA

From Left, Consultant/Senior Account Director The Quadrant Company, Mrs Tosin Adefeko, Managing Director The Quadrant Company, Mr Bolaji Okusaga, and Head of Finance and Admin The Quadrant Company, Mr Femi Olaleye, at the media briefing on the Market Rollout of held in Lagos on today Friday 21 of June 2013.

From Left, Managing Director/Chief Executive Officer Nigeria Sovereign Investment Authority, Uche Orji; President and Chief Executive Officer, GE Africa, Jay Ireland; Vice Chairman, GE Global, John Rice; and President and Chief Executive Officer, GE Nigeria, Lazarus Angbazo, at the Agreement Signing Between GE and  Nigeria Sovereign Investment Authority (NSIA) held at Wheatbaker Hotel & Resorts in Lagos on Wednesday 19 June 2013.

From Left, Senior Executive, Human Resources, GE Africa, Tamla Oates-Forney, President and Chief Executive Officer, GE Africa, Jay Ireland; Vice Chairman, GE Global, John Rice; and President and Chief Executive Officer, GE Nigeria, Lazarus Angbazo at the opening ceremony of GE’s new office in Lagos Announces Funke Akindele As Brand Ambassador

Funke Akindele
Fast growing online business networking platform, has announced star actress, Funke Akindele as brand ambassador. She was presented to a section of the media on Saturday at a ceremony which held inside the premises of The Quadrant Company in Ikeja, Lagos. Her presentation came on the heels of a successful official launch in April and a town storm campaign in May by the brand. is a multi site business portal, news service and e-commerce platform which is linked to the Interswitch platform for payment purposes. The platform has been enjoying growing patronage and traffic since its launch in April. offers access to platforms like BIZPOINT, TALKPOINT, SALESPOINT, PLAYPOINT and THOUGHTPOINT for businesses and consumers to meet and interact.

Speaking at a ceremony where she was unveiled as the brand ambassador, Akindele remarked that “I am delighted to be associated with and consider it a honour to be the brand ambassador. The Qlichy brand besides being the ultimate virtual meeting point and resource center, it is the future. I say this because this new platform will empower a lot of people.”

Speaking further she added that “ I admire the thought process behind it and that’s why I am thrilled to be part of the Team Qlichy. It will empower a wide range of people and I enjoin all business operators, owners, content developers and resource persons to be part of it.

Speaking earlier, Managing Director of The Quadrant Company, parent company of, Bolaji Okusaga explained that with the unveil of Akindele as brand ambassador, the multimedia awareness campaign to further deepen the brand’s acceptance was set to roll out.

“We’re launching the radio and online campaign next Monday to further avail more businesses and individuals the limitless opportunities that offers enterprises across different sectors of the economy, be it consumer goods, oil and gas, real estate, telecoms and financial sectors among many others,” stated Okusaga.

He revealed that the projection of within the next six months is to become a household name in business intelligence and social commerce given the ability of the platform to offer a seamless experience which cuts across business information, lifestyle and e-commerce. He added that the Qlichy platform is able to achieve its audacious targets through daily news feeds, crowd sourcing, networking and other varied opportunities which it provides.

“Achieving this target will require luring businesses and consumer searching for opportunities to visit and explore possibilities which were before now fragmented in the Nigerian online space,” Okusaga concluded.  

Tuesday 18 June 2013

Samsung to launch Galaxy S4 Advanced with faster LTE

Samsung is set to launch a new Galaxy S4 that will transmit data at nearly twice the normal speed through the LTE-Advanced 4G technology.

According to the company, the phones will be powered by Qualcomm chips. A movie download that takes 3 minutes with conventional 4G would take slightly more than 1 minute, Samsung said.

In an interbiew with Reuters recently, Samsung Electronics CEO J.K. Shin said that his company will launch a Galaxy S4 Advanced device designed to connect to the next generation of 4G LTE networks, dubbed LTE-Advanced.

Checks have revealed that Samsung's shares have lost about $US20 billion since June 7 after analysts cut forecasts for Galaxy S4 sales by as much as 30 per cent on industry data.

The Language Factory To Launch Rebranding at Marketing Week Live

UK based translation agency, The Language Factory, will be launching its new brand identity during the Marketing Week Live show at the Olympia Grand in London on 26th and 27th June 2013.

According to a statement on marketingweeklive, the new branding has been designed with the aim of reflecting the company’s core values whilst continuing to develop its corporate identity within its key markets. It also promotes the long history The Language Factory has in the translation industry and its focus on providing quality translations, outstanding service and the ethical approach taken towards staff, clients and suppliers.

The Language Factory turned to Moove, a London based design agency, who worked closely with staff to understand and convey all of the company’s strengths and their strategy for future development. The Language Factory can be found at stand F237 in the Insight zone of the Marketing Week Live show where they will be celebrating the launch of their new brand identity.

In the weeks following the branding launch, The Language Factory will also be unveiling their redesigned and redeveloped website, with plenty of new content and features.

Marketing Week Live is the UK’s largest marketing event, and welcomed 13,396 marketing decision makers in 2012. It is the platform to learn from the best in an unrivalled programme of free educational sessions, leading suppliers, latest knowledge, techniques and solutions to become smarter marketers. No other event comes close to offering the same direct access to the unrivalled, reputable and influential experts that are shaping today’s marketing.

Established in 1992, The Language Factory’s aim was to become the translation company of choice through developing our people and providing outstanding service to our clients. We only ever entrust our clients’ documents to fully-qualified, professional translators to ensure we provide specialised translation, proofreading, localisation, back-translation and coding services. Over 20 years later, our clients still rely on our effective business methods and ethics to consistently provide high-quality translations and a friendly and efficient service.

Monday 17 June 2013

AdFu Partners With Yookos To Reach Into Africa

In an attempt to increase market reach into a more defined growing African market and to drive advertising and future revenue, AdFu, online marketing site owned by Kagiso Media, has partnered with Africa-born social network, Yookos.

This three-year agreement between Yookos and Kagiso Media, aims for Yookos to enjoy exclusive sales representation throughout Africa through AdFu’s in-house sales team.

The deal also states that the social network will be able to access AdFu’s world-class ad-ops team and operational, analytics and ad-serving platforms. On top of this, the two companies are said to co-operate on sharing content as well.

AdFu adds Yookos to an African network that already includes a range of premium online publishers such as Nation Media, Sky News, Sky Sports, and the Teamtalk family of sites, which includes Cricket 365, Sporting Life, Football 365, Golf 365, Football 411, Planet F1 and Planet Rugby.

Yookos offers exceptionally strong coverage of the fast-growing Nigerian and Kenyan markets, with users representing the full LSM spectrum. The audience is 30% made up of high LSM users earning more than R20,000 a month and 83% of its users are the main or joint decision-maker in the home.

Kagiso Digital launched the AdFu ad network last year to offer a range of powerful opportunities within vertical markets to advertisers and niche publishers. 

Yahoo! Introduces New Sports App

Yahoo! has released a new sports app, Yahoo! Sports to revamped its 'Sportacular'. Users can now Login to Yahoo! Sports and sync their favorite teams across mobile apps and the web.

The App is now available as a free download, Yahoo! Sports 4.0 is now a universal app. The iPad version delivers an even better experience with faster and easier navigation.

"Today we’re excited to introduce the new Yahoo! Sports app, formerly named Sportacular.  The Yahoo! Sports app brings together the best of Sportacular with new features including more content, faster experience and a redesign for iOS devices (now including iPad!) and Android smartphones", Brian Mead, Director, Product Management said on

"With the new iPad version we’ve focused on making our Yahoo! Sports app faster and easier to scan, navigate and consume.  We’ve used the extra screen space to make sure you can read the articles while keeping an eye on all the action", he said.   

MasterCard Demonstrates Commitment to Cashless Nigeria Initiative

Leading global payment solutions company, MasterCard further demonstrated its commitment to the promotion of the cashless culture in Nigeria by throwing its weight behind the 13th edition of the annual international conference on cards and e-payments in Lagos.

This year’s edition focused on creating the much needed awareness for the Central Bank of Nigeria’s cashless policy, especially as it relates to the creation of a central switch for mobile money and agent banking in Nigeria.
From Left, Group Head, Marketing, Intermarc Consulting, Ann Agbokhan; Deputy Director, Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN), Musa Jimoh, presenting the Platinum Sponsorship Award to Director, Acceptance Development, West Africa, MasterCard, Kamil Olufowobi, at the Award Dinner of the 13th   edition of Card, ATM & Mobile Expo Africa, held at Eko Hotel & Suites, Lagos, on Thursday, June 13th, 2013.

The importance of the conference derives from the fact that cards and e-payment systems have now taken centre stage in the economies of most African countries, with banks and other financial institutions consistently looking for solutions and value added services for the benefits of the market.

Omokehinde Ojomuyide, Vice President and Area Business Head, West Africa, MasterCard, restated the company's commitment to furthering a cashless Nigeria. ”MasterCard is committed to the cashless Nigeria initiative and supporting financial inclusion by optimizing payment systems in Africa, and we strongly believe that forums like this will help drive the cashless culture in Nigeria. According to the Central Bank, two trillion naira currently exchanges hands daily in banking halls across Nigeria, at MasterCard, our vision is to drive that number down significantly by encouraging and enabling the migration to electronic forms of payments.”

The three-day event also featured an Award Dinner during which the Deputy Director, Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN), Musa Jimoh, presented MasterCard with the Platinum Sponsorship Award in recognition of its contributions to the annual international conference.

The Card, ATM and Mobile Expo Africa is the biggest card exhibition in Africa and had in attendance leading personalities in the business segment and leading e-payment service providers from Nigeria and abroad.

The conference featured six technical forums each focusing on specific payment systems, and had several exhibitors from Nigeria and overseas display the latest technologies in electronic payment.

IBM Helps Nigeria's Lagos State Design Transportation System for Future Growth

A team of IBM experts completing a month-long pro bono consulting assignment, today presented recommendations to Nigeria's Lagos State Government to help ensure a more efficient flow of traffic in the city of Lagos. Africa's most populous city, Lagos has 20 million citizens.
Lagos State Governor Babatunde Raji Fashola (centre)

Working with the Lagos Metropolitan Area Transport Authority, the agency responsible for developing and implementing the state’s transportation blueprint, and the Lagos State Ministries of Transportation, Works & Infrastructure, Science & Technology, the IBM team of experts proposed technology-driven strategies to make travel easier.

Located in West Africa’s rain forest belt, 20% of Lagos' geographical area is taken up by water, but most commuter travel in the state is by road.  City authorities predict a 350% growth in the number of vehicles in the state over the next 25 years, with the population doubling to 40 million by 2030. The potential of both rail and water transport remains largely untapped, carrying less than one percent of overall traffic in the state.

Lagos State Governor Babatunde Raji Fashola says, “The need to deploy innovative approaches that address civic challenges in Lagos State has never been greater. Keeping up with the state’s growing appetite for services and resources is a herculean and continuous process. Our ability and growing success in attracting home-grown and international trade and investment activity, is generating a need for better governance and management practices. Technology is the key to the future, and we welcome IBM’s support in this regard.”

The team's recommendations incorporated existing infrastructure, and proposed strategies for self-funded projects.

“IBM’s set of recommendations address our key transportation challenges and clearly enhance our ongoing efforts to fix the myriad of issues faced by our fast developing state,” Kayode Opeifa, Lagos State commissioner for transport said. Further confirming this point of view, Dr Obafemi Hamzat, Lagos state commissioner for works and infrastructure said the state’s “blueprint for transforming our struggling infrastructure into a modern ecosystem driven by data intelligence and efficient resource management has been further authenticated by these set of recommendations from IBM.”

Lagos is West Africa’s leading commercial hub with the region’s largest air and seaports. The city generates 25% of national gross domestic product and its citizens account for 12% of Nigeria’s population.

“Lagos will continue to be a significant element of Africa’s economic success story, said Taiwo Otiti, IBM’s Country General Manager for West Africa.

The collaboration between Lagos and IBM was funded by a Smarter Cities Challenge grant -- one of only some 30 awarded globally for 2013.

Launched in 2011, the IBM Smarter Cities Challenge is a three-year, 100-city, US$50 million competitive grant program.  IBM's single-largest philanthropic initiative, the program assigns a team of six top IBM experts to each winning city to study a key issue identified by the city's leadership.   The program was inspired by the global migration to cities.

The Smarter Cities Challenge is sponsored by IBM's Corporate Citizenship program and IBM’s International Foundation. IBM has been a leader in corporate social responsibility and citizenship for more than 100 years.

Thursday 13 June 2013

New York Forum AFRICA 2013 to Host Ten African Heads of State

Ten African heads of state have confirmed their attendance at The New York Forum AFRICA, to be held in Libreville, Gabon from June 14-16. The leaders, including heads of state from all six of the Economic and Monetary Community of Central African States (CEMAC), will join more than 1,000 business and political leaders.

The New York Forum AFRICA is the largest pan-African business summit in the world; this year it plays host to the Summit of the Heads of CEMAC, whose members are Cameroon, the Central African Republic, Chad, Equatorial Guinea, Gabon and the Republic of the Congo.

The six CEMAC heads of state joined other political leaders and more than 1,000 business leaders from the region and further afield, to discuss issues as diverse as national and economic security, infrastructure, foreign direct investment, with a special focus on SMEs and entrepreneurs.

A communiqué, including policy initiatives from the CEMAC meeting and discussions from the opening day of the NYFA, will be presented at the G8 pre-summit event on Africa. The communiqué will be presented by H.E. Emmanuel Issoze-Ngondet, Minister of Foreign Affairs, International Cooperation and the Francophonie for the Republic of Gabon.

A final communiqué from the CEMAC leaders will be delivered upon the conclusion of the NYFA to the G8.

Now in its second year, the New York Forum AFRICA is organized by Richard Attias & Associates under the patronage of the Office of President Ali Bongo Ondimba and in collaboration with the Government of Gabon.  

Event: 13th Edition of Card, ATM & Mobile Expo Africa

The 13th edition of Card, ATM & Mobile Expo which is to come to an end today at Eko Hotel & Suites, Lagos, has been a superb networking and learning experience that have brought together exhibitors from all over the world.

The three-day event (11-13 June) created a unique opportunity to develop ideas and make business enhancing connections. It involve several brainstorming sessions to explore ways of addressing issues being faced by the African e-payment industry.

From Left, Director, Acceptance Development, West Africa, MasterCard, Kamil Olufowobi; Key Account Manager, Huawei Technology, James Zhan; Senior Manager Enterprise and Channel Terminal, Huawei Technology, Jason Dong; and Customer Operations Services, West Africa, MasterCard, Taiwo Adebayo, at the 13th edition of Card, ATM & Mobile Expo Africa, held at Eko Hotel & Suites, Lagos, on Tuesday, June 12th, 2013

From Left, Managing Director, SIBs International, Pedro Hipolito; Director, Acceptance Development, West Africa, MasterCard, Kamil Olufowobi; and Executive Director, Business Development, Nigeria Inter-Bank Settlement System PLC (NIBSS), Christabel  Onyejekwe, at the 13th edition of Card, ATM & Mobile Expo Africa, held at Eko Hotel & Suites, Lagos, on Tuesday, June 11th, 2013

Ericsson Opens Service Delivery Centres in Nigeria, DRC

Ericsson has opened two new service delivery facilities in Nigeria and the DRC to cater for growth and to ensure enhanced support to customers. Lars Christer Johannisson, head of Ericsson’s regional services organization, said the location of the facilities is based on current business needs.

During the initial period, Ericsson experts from around the world will work closely with a core of local professionals to establish the centres. Following this, there will be a transition of responsibility to the region through structured competence transfer in conjunction with targeted local graduate recruitment.

The move will also support Ericsson’s leadership position in managed services and enhance delivery of their services portfolio across sub-Saharan Africa.

Fredrik Jejdling, head Ericsson sub-Saharan Africa, said: “The facilities will allow us to work even closer with our customers, and support them in delivering a superior end-user experience. As the industry leader in managed services, we have proven capabilities in managing and operating many operator networks worldwide and have recently signed major deals with key African operators including Atlantique Telecom and Airtel.”

Statistics within the mobile technology industry indicate that the number of mobile connections in Sub-Saharan Africa increased by 20 per cent to over 500 million by early 2013.

Diamond Bank Launches New Campaign

Diamond Bank is set to break its new campaign to undoubtedly claim its position as one of the leading financial institutions in Nigeria- providing customers with tangible financial solutions tailored specifically to suit their lifestyle.

Following a successful brand refresh in November 2012 where the brand saw changes in its colours moving away from the monosyllabic greys and dark tones to more vibrant colours, the motive was to make the brand more approachable in line with its’ positioning as a leading retail bank in Nigeria.

In a highly delicate and competitive banking environment with little or no product differentiation and where products are easily replicated, banks must seek to clearly define their role and product positioning. Diamond Bank’s new media campaign “you need a new bank,” reminds customers of the power of choice especially when it comes to choosing a bank.

As customers are becoming more discerning of banking products and services, the bank is putting a stake in the ground- armed with a portfolio of products and technology to produce faster and more efficient services, the question becomes ‘’why do you stay with a bank that does not meet your needs?” said Ayona Trimnell, Head Corporate Communications, Diamond Bank Plc.

The concept for the new campaign has been developed in collaboration with X3treme Media a young dynamic Agency based in Lagos. The message, albeit intently challenging, pulls in humour and tongue in cheek dialogue to drive the message to the customer.

The campaign will be carried across all touch points- print, radio, outdoor and television and will be aired Monday June 17th 2013.

Photo Of The Week: Diamond Bank Trainees Donate Gift Items To Sathya Orphanage, Lekki

Diamond Bank trainees donate food stuff, paint and gift items to Sathya Orphanage, Lekki as part of their Corporate Social Responsibility initiative

Diamond Bank trainees donate food stuff, paint and gift items to Sathya Orphanage, Lekki as part of their CSR

MasterCard Launches New Training Facility in Kenya

MasterCard has announced the launch of a brand new training facility in Kenya to empower the financial services ecosystem with knowledge on various aspects of cashless payments in order to boost acceptance readiness in the region.

The training centre, located at MasterCard’s East Africa offices in Eldama Park, off Peponi Road, will be used for training purposes for merchants, retailers and other partners. The facility, which can seat up to 40 people at a time, will be used to host project meetings to enhance awareness of global payments industry best practice in issuance of cards, retail payments and technical aspects of cashless transactions.

Speaking at the inauguration ceremony of the MasterCard Training Centre, Deputy President William Ruto commented: “We are pleased about MasterCard’s commitment to working cohesively with local and regional stakeholders in the payments industry so as to arrive at locally-relevant solutions that will help propel Kenya’s payments infrastructure. In order to maintain Kenya’s status as the innovation hub in East Africa, we are committed to working with companies such as MasterCard to continually deliver on the best financially-inclusive payment solutions for all Kenyans.”

Michael Miebach, President, MasterCard Middle East and Africa, commented: “As we make major strides towards a world beyond cash in Kenya, we are helping secure a better, more inclusive payments landscape for everyone. This training facility demonstrates our commitment to harnessing our global technology and expertise for the betterment of the financial industry and electronic payments in Kenya and East Africa.”

Etihad Airways Offers Free UAE Tourist Visas For Nigerian Travellers

Etihad Airways, the national airline of the United Arab Emirates, is offering free 30-day tourist visas to Nigerian travellers who choose to fly to the UAE. This promotional offer is valid from June 10 to July 10, 2013, and is open to Etihad Airways’ existing and new customers.

Maurice Phohleli, Etihad Airways’ General Manager, Nigeria and West Africa, said: “With this offer we hope to support and assist Nigerian visitors in gaining their visas for the United Arab Emirates, so that they can visit many of the UAE’s popular attractions, and experience for themselves the renowned Arabian hospitality the region is so famous for.”

The promotion only applies to travellers who have purchased tickets at Etihad Airways’ standard published fares, and a period of seven days is required for processing the visa. Furthermore, all outbound travel from Nigeria must be completed by July 10, 2013.

Passengers submitting their visa applications must hold a valid international passport, a confirmed Etihad Airways ticket issued at least 24 hours prior to visa application, one colour passport photograph with white background, and confirmation of hotel accommodation in Abu Dhabi. Passengers under 40 years of age will also have to present a birth certificate and/or marriage certificate where applicable.

Pearl Business class passengers may apply for their tourist visas by submitting an application at the airline’s office in Ikoyi, Lagos, while passengers travelling in Coral Economy class can apply online at  or directly in person, by visiting the UAE Visa Application Centre at Falomo Shopping Centre in Awolowo Way, Ikoyi, Lagos.

Approval of visa applications is at the sole discretion of the UAE Immigration authorities.

*Terms and conditions apply. For more information please go to  

Star Rewards Thousands of Consumers as League Ends

In what is arguably one of the most creative consumer engagement platforms and reward schemes by any brand in Nigeria, Star Lager beer, the leading lager brand in the country has commenced the reward of 32, 179 lucky consumers with customized Ipads, DVDs and headphones. The lucky winners emerged from the just concluded unique and exciting Star League ‘Text and Play’ activation.

The gift items will be personally delivered free of charge to the doorsteps of all winners across the country.

During the course of the unique activation, the brand on four different occasions, doled out N500 recharge cards each to over 7, 000 participants to appreciate consumers for their participation and to show the caring nature of the brand.

The brand went further to invite some of the league leaders across different states to exclusive gigs with international singing superstar, Tuface and other A-list music artistes. The strictly by invitation exclusive party took place in Lagos, Abuja, Benin, Enugu and Port-Harcourt. The league leaders were able to have a close interaction with Tuface and friends, a privilege made possible by Star lager beer which drew accolades from the consumers’.

While it lasted between April 2 - May 31,the Star League ‘Text and Play’ served as a platform for thousands of consumers across the 36 states of the federation including Abuja - the Federal Capital territory.

On this unique activation, Mr. Omotunde Adenusi, Brand Manager, STAR stated that “Star Lager Beer, the No.1 beer in the country has continued to keep its consumers actively engaged all year round through its exciting consumer engagement platforms that cut through music, football and exciting promotions and reward programmes”. 

Organizations, UN Show Commitment To Advance Maternal and New Born Health in Nigeria

As a follow up to the October 2012 launch of the Saving One Million Lives initiative in Abuja and as part of efforts aimed at fulfilling its commitment to Nigeria, General Electric Healthcare in partnership with the Ministry of Health, The Wellbeing Foundation Africa and Save the Children recently convened key stakeholders and thought leaders in a roundtable programme designed to discuss ways technology and innovation can contribute to meeting Nigeria’s maternal and new born health goals.

The roundtable programme was aimed at mobilizing partners to introduce new technologies and innovations in partnership with all levels of government. As a result, GE and other invited participants signed a maternal and newborn pledge committing to one or more initiatives that will contribute to saving the lives of Nigerian mothers and Children under 5.

The conference also enabled participants to join a Public-Private Partnership for Maternal and Newborn Health to coordinate implementation across the many stakeholders.

According to Ms. Janeen Uzzell, Director Healthcare Programs GE Africa, new approaches are needed to reduce the rate of maternal mortality in Nigeria. The initiative sets targets of preventing 17,000 maternal and 180,000 newborn deaths by 2015 by increasing the proportion of pregnant women who attend four or more antenatal care visits from 45% to 80%; by increasing the proportion of births with a skilled attendant from 40% to 85%; and by increasing the number of upgraded primary healthcare facilities from 1,000 to 5,000 - all by 2015. She went further to say “if the necessary technologies were in place and available to the women most at risk, Nigeria could dramatically reduce maternal and newborn deaths”.

Sony Launches 84-Inch 4K LED TV in Nigeria

Sony, the leading consumer electronics brand, has launched its latest 84-inch BRAVIA LED television. The Television boasts a 4K (3840 x 2160) LED panel, comprising 8.29 megapixels, which is four times the resolution of Full High Definition standard.

Also, the TV incorporates Sony’s proprietary ‘4K X-Reality PRO’ super-resolution high-picture quality engine. Featuring Four Times the Resolution of Full High Definition and Powerful Sound, Sony’s Revolutionary Offering Redefines Future of Home Entertainment
Seamlessly delivering high-resolution large-screen picture with powerful sound and visuals to provide an immersive theatre-like experience, the latest BRAVIA LED television marks a distinctive entry with its class-apart features.

Hiroyasu Sugiyama, Managing Director, Sony Middle East and Africa, said: “If you were amazed by the shift from Standard to High Definition, 4K, with four times the resolution of Full High Definition, will rekindle or even exceed that sensation. It virtually eliminates the line between television and reality to offer an unprecedented and revolutionary viewing experience. The launch of this breakthrough 84-inch 4K BRAVIA television reaffirms Sony’s commitment to consistently delivering a superior product offering to our consumers.”

The new 4K BRAVIA TV incorporates ‘4K X-Reality PRO’; Sony’s proprietary super-resolution high picture quality engine optimized for 4K LED TV. This engine is capable of reproducing any content with different resolutions, such as movies, photographs and games, into stunningly crisp, high-quality images with 4K resolution. Even when seated as close as 1.5 meters from the screen, viewers will not be bothered by the pixels and notice images are breathtakingly realistic and beautifully clear – an all-encapsulating panoramic viewing experience previously unavailable from a TV.

“The launch of the 84-inch 4K BRAVIA TV demonstrates the new and exciting consumer home-experiences made possible through professional technologies, and advanced through our ‘One Sony’ approach to hardware and content innovation,” added Sugiyama.

The 84-inch BRAVIA LED television will be available from June’13 across select Sony Centre Outlets and other leading electronics retailers in Victoria Island and Ikeja.

Absa Launches Futuristic Branch

Towards enhancing the customer experience through technological advances and environmental benefits, South African bank Absa has launched a futuristic branch.
Absa’s newly renovated Hyde Park branch steps into the future of retail banking
Speaking at the launch, Absa Group CE Maria Ramos said: “I am proud to introduce this branch to our customers. It represents the new face of traditional banking. The result will be that we can deliver outstanding service to our customers, offering them an engagement that is faster and more efficient.”

“The move towards a more technological branch augments the self-service banking which we have already introduced to support a 24-hour banking service. Customers are able to deposit cash and transact across our vast ATM network or access their banking in the comfort of their homes using cellphone and online banking platforms as well as our banking App, says Ramos.”

Innovations such as Quick Service Kiosks allow customers to perform complex banking activities without the need to queue, while the bank’s innovative Qmatic system uses a ticketing system to match a customer’s transactional requirements with the best skilled consultant who can provide the service in the shortest possible time. The customer is then directed to multi-skilled staff who are able to handle varied queries and transactional needs quickly and efficiently – all at the same counter.

These new banking innovations have been designed to appeal to a spectrum of customers across all segments.

Facebook Introducing Hashtags

Social media site, Facebook is introducing hashtags - helping users gain a larger view of what others are talking about on Twitter, Instagram and other services.

In a blog post yesterday the social media site stated users will be able to click a hashtag to see a feed of discussions about a particular topic.

"We'll continue to roll out more features in the coming weeks and months, including trending hashtags and deeper insights, that help people discover more of the world's conversations," wrote Greg Lindley, product manager for hashtags, in the post.

The company stated that the hashtags are a first step toward making it easier for users to find out what others are discussing. The company is not giving exact details about other tools it might introduce. If Twitter's use of hashtags is any indication, Facebook will likely incorporate them into its advertising business.

Friday 7 June 2013

Promasidor Sees Future Black Stallion from iTry Rugby Players

As the Cowbell iTry Rugby League for secondary schools in Lagos State enters second stage with the launch of cluster B, Promasidor Nigeria Limited, maker of Cowbell Milk and a key sponsor of the tournament, has foreseen the emergence of the future Nigerian National rugby team from the school kids competing for Lagos 7s final.

Promasidor in partnership with Nigeria Rugby Football Federation (NRFF), last year launched the coaching cluster with the aim of grooming rugby future rugby stars and more importantly to support the game of rugby, a relatively unpopular sport in Nigeria.

Speaking at the Methodist High School, Victoria Island, Lagos, the venue of the Cluster B launch, the Managing Director, Promasidor, Chief Keith Richards said the company is driven by its dream to see the young stars it is grooming play for the Black Stallions-the Nigerian National rugby team.

Keith who commended the efforts of the NRFF and also admitted that the kids showed promise in the game of rugby said “if we continue with this level of commitment, we can achieve a lot.”

He enjoined the participating teams to uphold the spirit of commitment, passion and respect as playing with that spirit would not only be useful for the game of rugby but also in all spheres of life.

The Promasidor boss, rewarded an 8-year old rugby player, Miss Akinola Marvelous of Nana Apori Secondary School adjudged to be the youngest participating kid in cluster B league with some company’s products.

Through consistency and unflinching commitment, the company reached a milestone with the launch of rugby league for first cluster last week at CMS Grammar School Bariga, Lagos.

The first cluster which was concluded on Saturday June 1st saw Toyibat Ggbagada crush CMS Grammar School Bariga by 1 try to nil to emerge as cluster champion in the boy’s category while Queens College Yaba defeated Toyibat Ggbagada by 3 tries to 1 to become winner in the girl’s category.

2go Launches App For Android Phones

The much anticipated version of 2go is now available on Google Play bringing all the features of this social network to the Android platform.

 2go has since gone on to reach over 10 million active users, with nine million in Nigeria alone.

Android phones represent 5.2% of current monthly phone sales in Nigeria, up from 3.4% in September 2012. The trend is accelerating across Africa. In Kenya, which is a more mature Android market, 52% of monthly sales are Android phones.

Samsung To Empower Nigerian Young Talent in Film Industry

Towards promoting and empowering young talents in Nigeria, Samsung has announced Galaxy Star Campaign in Lagos, pledging to sponsor ten young amateur videographers and filmmakers on a trip to Dubai.

According to the company, the workshops are to empowerment of winners of the Galaxy Star video competition is one of several initiatives that Samsung is undertaking towards achieving this goal. There, they will attend training seminars and workshops to hone their skills in video production and directing.

Prospective participants can register by shooting a video with a Galaxy Star smartphone and upload it to Samsung’s website. Individuals interested are required to shoot a video using the Galaxy Star smartphone and upload same on Samsung’s website between June 3 and July 7.

20 winning videos will be shortlisted via public voting after which ten finalists will be selected for the trip to Dubai by a renowned Nigerian film producer.

The “Galaxy Star Campaign” is one of several youth empowerment projects undertaken by Samsung Electronics West Africa over the past few years, as part of its corporate social investment initiatives.

CNN’s Inside Africa Explores Nigeria’s Cultural and Ethnic Diversity

Inside Africa,CNN’s weekly programme that explores the diversity of different cultures, countries and regions will be showcasing and exploring one of Africa’s most populous nations, one of the most diverse countries in the world, and home to more than five hundred different ethnic groups, each with its own language, Nigeria.

On this week’s episode which airs this Friday at 5:30pm, with repeat broadcasts on Saturday: 11:30am; and Sunday: 04:30pm, Vladimir Duthiers explores these cultures and traditions and what makes them unique, and also what brings them together as one nation.

Stories mostly heard of Nigeria are usually that of poverty, religious violence, corruption, but that’s just scratching the surface as this country produced Fela Kuti and Afrobeat, the literary giants Wole Soyinka and late Chinua Achebe, that put African cinema on the map with Nollywood, from the Savannah and the Sahel in the Muslim North, to the creeks and the forest in the Christian South- this is a microcosm of Africa.

According to Professor Adisa Ogunfolakan, Director of the Museum of Natural History, Obafemi Awolowo University, Ile Ife, Nigeria, “ When we talk of the Nigerian history, after 1914 that Nigeria was merged together, the North and the South colony was merged together, but before then each unique tribe had their own history, he said”.

Now united under one flag, Nigeria has three major ethnic groups, the Igbos, the Hausa-Fulanis and the Yorubas. Vladimir Duthiers speaks with a member from each of these groups for a better understanding of their cultures.

From the Hausa-Fulanis of the North, the Yorubas of the South West to the Igbos of the South East, Nigeria is no doubt rich in culture and history.

Wednesday 5 June 2013

Huawei Unveils Ultra-Wideband RRU at 2013 Indonesia LTE TDD Summit

One of the leading global information and communications technology (ICT) solutions provider, Huawei, recently unveiled a new Ultra-Wideband RRU product at the 2013 Indonesia LTE TDD Summit.

Each Ultra-Wideband RRU product supports a maximum instantaneous bandwidth (IBW) of 80 MHz to help operators worldwide make use of new LTE TDD spectrum licenses as they become available.

Only one Ultra-Wideband RRU product for LTE TDD can simultaneously support up to four 20 MHz carriers with 4×4 MIMO and CA (carrier aggregation) technologies, and can provide a blazingly fast 1 Gb/s single user downlink throughput rate.

The product is part of a comprehensive solution for simplifying future network expansions while protecting investments in existing operator assets. By innovatively enabling higher flexibility for new spectrum releases, Ultra-Wideband RRU sets an industry milestone for further acceleration of LTE TDD commercial network deployment worldwide.

It supports flexibly adding new spectrum bands via software upgrades and utilizes a highly efficient power amplifier for providing a wider coverage area using the same amount of consumed power as industry-average RRU solutions to cut down on OPEX and allow for adding capacity on-demand. It also employs combiners to cut back on wireless signal link loss for better overall mobile broadband network performance.

Etihad Airways Offers Discounted Fares To MasterCard Users In Nigeria

Etihad Airways, the national airline of the United Arab Emirates, is offering MasterCard holders in Nigeria up to 15 per cent discount on Etihad Airways’ standard published fares if they use their MasterCard when purchasing tickets on Etihad Airways’ website  between June 3 and August 3, 2013.

The promotion is available to both MasterCard credit and debit card holders, and is exclusive to the Nigerian market. A roundtrip or one-way ticket in Pearl Business Class using a MasterCard card will be discounted by 15 per cent, while Coral Economy Class travellers will receive a 10 per cent discount on the airline’s standard listed fares. All travel must be completed by December 10, 2013.

Maurice Phohleli, Etihad Airways’ General Manager, Nigeria and West Africa, said: “We are pleased to partner with MasterCard on this promotion which provides our customers with the added convenience of being able to buy their tickets quickly and safely online, and at great value.”

Omokehinde Ojomuyide, MasterCard Vice President and Area Business Head, West Africa, said: “MasterCard is delighted to be part of this initiative to help the Nigerian market gravitate towards global best practices in card commerce.”

This promotion is exclusive to MasterCard cardholders in Nigeria as an incentive to encourage Nigerians to embrace cashless transactions. In addition, holders of Titanium, Platinum or World Debit MasterCard cards are guaranteed complimentary access to the Al Reem Lounge at Abu Dhabi International Airport irrespective of the class of ticket purchased.

MasterCard and Etihad Airways have taken extensive steps to ensure the safety of online transactions at   with the mandatory use of MasterCard Securecode.”

Uganda Selects IBM and Waterfund to Benchmark Water Infrastructure

Waterfund LLC and IBM has signed an agreement with the Ministry of Water and Environment of the Republic of Uganda that makes the country the first in Africa to become a member of the pioneering Water Cost Index (WCI).

Waterfund, with IBM acting as calculation agent, will work with the Ministry of Water and Environment to calculate the cost of producing water in Uganda. This work will reflect estimated water production costs measured in US dollars per cubic metre and be published as part of the Rickards Real Cost Water Index™, to be updated monthly.

As governments are increasingly forced to turn to the private sector to fund the construction and maintenance of complex water networks, the index will provide Uganda with a benchmark for helping measure critical projects on a like-for-like basis. This makes it a vital tool for attracting funding for the water infrastructure projects critical to national development.

 “Becoming part of Waterfund’s benchmark index for water costs will help place Uganda at the forefront of innovation in finding significant funding solutions to realise our water infrastructure goals,” said Hon. Professor Ephraim Kamuntu, Uganda’s Minister of Water and Environment. “The unprecedented level of transparency that the index will bring to pricing water sector investments in Uganda will be a great asset in attracting private sector funding that can help us provide clean and safe freshwater to all our citizens. It gives us great pleasure to work with Waterfund and IBM and harness their expertise to make this happen.”

The Rickards Real Cost Water Index™ will highlight the energy costs, interest rate risk, and capital expenditures required to build and maintain large-scale water treatment and delivery networks in Uganda. The FY 2012/2013 budget for the Ministry of Water and Environment to invest in the water sector is UGX 301.9bn (US$153mn), with plans to supply 77% of rural dwellers and 100% of urban dwellers with clean water by 2015. To achieve this aim, however, it will require Uganda to commit at least US$300mn per year of new investment to the water sector until 2020.

“Uganda is proving itself to be very forward thinking and proactive in the solutions it is seeking to meet the water infrastructure investment challenges it faces,” said President & CEO of Waterfund Scott Rickards. “This innovative spirit, combined with Waterfund’s first of its kind water cost index and IBM’s unrivalled expertise in Big Data analytics, will bring real financial transparency to Uganda’s water sector and significantly broaden the funding options available to ensure sufficient investment in freshwater infrastructure.”

By 2030, 50 percent of Africans are expected to live in cities, while Africa's collective GDP is expected to rise to $ 2.6 trillion by 2020 (Mckinsey Global Institute), increasing the demand for water and stressing existing sources of potable across the continent.  In South Africa, IBM is already working a project called WaterWatchers, which is driven by a new mobile phone application and SMS capability that will enable South African citizens to report water leaks, faulty water pipes and general conditions of water canals.  The recently launched IBM Africa Research Lab is also developing solutions for Africa's challenges access to potable water.

Dell Introduces New Storage Solutions for Customers

At its Dell Enterprise Forum customer and partner event, Dell today unveiled new storage solutions and expanded analytics capabilities designed to help businesses improve their IT performance, support data insights and reduce overall costs.

As businesses work to keep pace with massive data growth, many are also turning to IT systems optimised for performance- and data-intensive workloads like those required to analyse customer and
business data for insights that help achieve their goals. In fact, analyst firm IDC projects the worldwide big data technology and services market will grow at a 31.7 percent compound annual growth rate with revenues reaching $23.8 billion by 2016. Infrastructure technology for big data deployments is expected to grow the fastest with the storage segment expected to increase at the highest rate, 53.4 percent.

“While businesses continue to look to drive cost and complexity out of their data centres, they also are charged with finding flexible IT solutions that provide the optimal performance for the many kinds of workloads and applications they manage,” said Marius Haas, president, Dell Enterprise Solutions.

“ Dell is best positioned with an end-to-end data centre approach that provides open, scalable, integrated and automated solutions designed to simplify and generate the most value out of an IT investment. With today’s portfolio updates, Dell builds on our innovative storage capabilities while allowing customers to pack more storage in significantly less space and benefit from optimised performance for the most demanding environments.”

To help customers efficiently manage their vastly growing data while also addressing the needs of I/Ointensive workloads, substantial updates to the Dell storage portfolio support both growing scale and
performance-hungry applications in one solution.  With next generation Dell Compellent Storage Center 6.4 array software, optimised for data-intensive workloads, Dell unlocks the potential of automated tiering and ties together new Compellent offerings:

The Dell Compellent Flash Optimised Solution offers the industry’s first storage solution in its class with intelligent data placement across multiple types of flash technologies or in combination with traditional drives.

The Flash Optimised Solution can reduce storage costs by up to 75 percent compared to other flash optimised solutions, and supports high performance and data-intensive workloads with full enterprise-class features.

The Dell Compellent SC280 offers the best rack unit density of any major storage solution with up to 2.8 times more capacity than competing 2U enclosures. As Dell continues to drive innovative system efficiency, this capacity-optimised solution for hosting tiered data can store up to 336 terabytes in a 5U footprint while significantly reducing data centre space, power and cooling requirements.

Enabling customers to take advantage of Intel’s Distribution of Apache Hadoop (IDH). Dell currently is testing a solution based on IDH with customers, which will focus on performance and security, and offer customers choice for solutions to harness the value of big data. Dell Crowbar currently includes integration to Hadoop and will integrate with IDH when Dell launches an IDH-based solution this year.

Aba Resident Joins Salary-4-Life Winners in Diamond SavingsXtra Rewards

Mr. Otu Umoh Sunday, a resident of Ikot Ekpene Road Aba, Abia State has emerged the latest winner of “Salary-4-Life” star prize in the on-going Diamond Bank SavingsXtra Season 5 reward scheme.

The Salary-4-Life is a unique benefit of the SavingsXtra Reward Scheme in which Diamond Bank pays the sum of N100, 000 into the winning customer’s account every month for the next 20 years.

The May monthly draw was held at the popular Araromi Spare Parts Market in Ibadan recently brought the usual hustle and bustle in the market to halt as traders closed shop to witness the draw.

The monthly draw which was conducted through an electronic process as approved and witnessed by the National Lottery & Regulatory Commission and the Consumer Protection Council also saw Mr. and Mrs. Clement Obi, a couple operating joint savings account with Diamond Bank in Ibadan win N2 million in the draw while Mr. Obiaka Ekeabuike Gilbert of Mubi branch, Mr. Okonkwo Sunday Ndubuisi of Port Harcourt branch; Justus Emeka, Madubuchi of Abuja branch, Okeke Nkiruka Francis of Ikeja branch; Mr. Julius Ugwu Agu of Ladipo branch among others won N1 million each.

Mr. Odili Ogwu, a member of the Customer Experience Group, Diamond Bank speaking at the event said the bank’s SavingsXtra account is the most rewarding way to save, adding that the leading commercial bank in the country, has rewarded over 3,000 customers with over N2 billion through its SavingsXtra reward scheme that began in 2008. He described the SavingsXtra account as a unique account for individuals wishing to build up their savings.

According to him, “It is an interest-yielding savings account which allows the deposit of both cash and other banks’ cheques. In addition, SavingsXtra account holders get a debit card and a cheque book, which can be used to withdraw from their accounts at any Diamond branch. It is a simple and straightforward savings account that comes with a low minimum opening and operating amount of N5, 000 with free access to all electronic banking channels.”