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Jamil Omobolaji Eniola: The Black Shining Prince at 50

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By Eric Elezuo

Born 50 years ago in Mushin, a major  suburb of Lagos State, Nigeria, Jamil Omobolaji Eniola has educated at some of the world’s Ivy league institutions, over the last 20 years. He has also been involved in United Nations Consulting, International Diplomacy Consulting, Negotiation and Decision-making, Conferences, Seminars, and Workshops around the globe.

Quite an enigma, Eniola Founded and named HEN Foundation as a befitting memorial to his late mother, with the objectives of empowering the needy with basic healthcare and access to basic education in Africa and developing countries. HEN Foundation’s Mathematics Skill Pilot Program benefited over 5,000 pupils in public primary and secondary schools in Nigeria in 2015. Additionally, over 800 students in the inner city of Lagos State, Nigeria, benefited from free University entry forms and free tutorial classes for the University Matriculation Examination. Also, in 2017, HEN Foundation conducted a free Cancer Screening Exercise for over 1,500 patients, in collaboration with the University of Ibadan Cancer Research Centre at the Akerele Healthcare Centre, Surulere, Lagos, at which valuable medical equipment was donated to both the cancer research Centre and the healthcare Centre, University of Ibadan. Since 2018, three scholarships have been awarded to girls through his foundation to mark International Girl’s Day. The Hen foundation sponsored Science, Technology, Engineering and Maths (STEM) programs in Kebbi State, Nigeria in 2019 and 2020 to improve education development in Northern Nigeria – the state with the lowest education level.

The Hen Foundation awarded ten graduate students a mini-MBA scholarship in 2020 and 2021 to develop their entrepreneurial skills at Tekedia Institute. A training workshop on leadership for University of Ibadan students and financial aids for rural women to expand their small businesses in Oyo State, Nigeria. Since 2013, the Hen Foundation has organized empowerment programs in Nigeria on an annual basis.

A well-educated individual, Eniola studied two master’s degrees simultaneously; an MA in International Criminology from the University of Greenwich, and an LL.M in International Law from the University of East London, graduating, in the same year, as best overall class student in International Criminology, and a Credit Grade in International Law, a rare feat, and an outstanding performance. His other academic laurels include LLB in Law at University of Sussex; M.sc and MA respectively in International Relations from Royal Holloway University of London and Middlesex University; an Advanced General Management Certificate from the University of Cambridge; an Executive Certificate in Negotiation and Decision Making from the London School of Economics; International Politics Certificate from the University of Oxford; an Advanced Certificate in Housing and Welfare from Trans-Atlantic College, London; a Diploma in Computer Studies from Manchester City College; and a graduate of Microbiology from the University of Ibadan, Nigeria. In the summer of 2024, Eniola will join Harvard University’s Kennedy School of Government’s Emerging Leaders Program. He is currently a Ph. D candidate in Conflict Management and Resolution.

Eniola with Chief Dele Momodu

Quite apart from his philanthropic activities in Africa, Eniola has also been a veritable source of hope and succour to the needy in the U.K., and was among the first people to come to the aid of victims of the June 14, 2017 Grenfell fire disaster in London, while he continues to assist his local mosque, the Al Amanah Mosque to provide temporary shelter and provisions for the survivors at the Westbourne Grove, Kensington area of London.

Eniola has also been a veritable pillar of support for many organizations, including Girl Child Network Worldwide Founded by CNN Hero, Betty Makoni, Girls2Women Initiatives, Kamuna Widows Empowerment Initiative, Okwui Mask Scheme for Survival of Domestic Violence, Mothers Pride Initiative and others. He regularly volunteers for Organization which supports people striving to learn the English language, and other aspects of education necessary for British socio-cultural integration.

The Hen Foundation is an international partner of Celebrate! Maya Angelou Project based in Arkansas and taking part in annual activities in Arkansas since 2018. Eniola serves on the Campaign for Maya Project Fundraising Committee. Eniola was named an honorary citizen of Little Rock, Arkansas, the home state of former US President Bill Clinton, by the Mayor of Little Rock, Arkansas in October 2019. Eniola is an active member of the annual Clinton Global Initiative in New York, founded by President Bill Clinton, Hillary Clinton, and Chelsea Clinton.

HEN Foundation has been granted United Nations ECOSOC status under non-governmental organization with access to the UN building and participation in the UN events, Conferences, and seminars in New York, Geneva and Vienna.

Eniola is CEO Hen & Associates Inc, Director Vaughan Energy Services, Director of Sales Profound Realtors, UAE, a member of Chatham House (The Royal Institute of International Affairs); a Member of the Diplomatic Council at The Hague, Netherlands; a Member of the British-Africa Business Alliance; a former Director of Travel and Exchange, All Nigeria United Nations Association (ANUNSA) Nigeria Chapter; a Member of the International Youth & Student Movement for the United Nations (ISMUN), Geneva Switzerland; a Member of the Action Committee for Peace, Bonn, Germany; a Member of the Association for Innovative Co-operation in Europe (AICE), Brussels, Belgium; and a former member of the steering committee of Amnesty International, Luxembourg.
Eniola, a member of United Nations Association-UK since 2004, regularly participates in the activities of London International Model United Nations, University of Cambridge Model United Nations, and Oxford University International Model United Nations. For more than ten years, he has been participating in the Annual International Day of UN Peacekeepers in London, and in 2011, in the company of foreign diplomats from more than 150 countries, he represented the Nigerian High Commissioner to lay a wreath at the Cenotaph in London, in remembrance of fallen UN Peacekeepers.

With Bob Nash, former Assistant to former President Clinton and Director of Presidential Personnel for the White House

Some views about Eniola by some global citizens:
“A global renaissance man”- (Bob Nash, Former Assistant to the President and Director of Presidential Personnel for White House Clinton Administration)

“Culturally and stylishly: crème de la crème”- (Janis Kearney, Personal Diarist of President Clinton at Oval Office, White house)

“A multi-faceted, brilliant man”- (Eartha Dunston, Senior Personnel US Department of Commerce, Biden Administration Washington DC)

“An upwardly mobile gentleman”- (Chief Dele Momodu CEO, Ovation Media Group)

“I had the great pleasure to do some philanthropy work with Jamil. He is a man who thinks outside the box in order to help people in need of all ages”- (Princess Tessy of Luxembourg)

“The Cultured Philanthropist”- (Dr Yomi Garnett World Class Ghostwriter)

“A kind and gentle giant on the move” – (Angel Burt, Non-Profit, Executive Director)

Eniola and Janis Kearney, a former Director of Communication at the Oval Office and personal Diarist to former President Clinton

Awards/Honors

-Honorary Citizen City of Little Rock, Arkansas USA
– Man of the Year, International Women 2021
-Alumnus of the Year Faculty of Science University of Ibadan
-Ambassador for Peace by Universal Peace Federation, UK
-Global Goodwill Ambassador USA
-Professional Accomplishment Honor by the International Alumni Association USA
-Inspiring Personality Award by Ghana Nigeria Achievers
-Exemplary Young International Life Change of the Year by Black Leadership Recognition Awards UK
-Associate- Negotiation & Conflict Management-International
-He For She Everyday Hero Award UK
-Award for Community Development in the UK by Gathering of Africa’s Best (GAB)
-Community and Inclusion Service Award by Uncelebrated Nigeria Award, UK
And many more.

 

This is wishing a good man a royal golden jubilee, and may life and health be kind to you for another 50 years!

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Meet Olayemi Cardoso, Tinubu’s Nominee for Central Bank Governor

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By Eric Elezuo

On Friday, President Bola Tinubu approved the nomination of Dr. Olayemi Michael Cardoso as the new Governor of the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN), to replace suspended Godwin Emefiele.

According to a press statement by presidential spokesman, Ajuri Ngelale, Cardoso will serve for a term of five (5) years at the first instance, pending his confirmation by the Nigerian Senate.

A deputy governor of the Bank, Faloshodun Shonubi, has been the acting Governor of the apex bank since the suspension of Emefiele in June this year,

Popularly Cardoso, known as Yemi Cardoso, the nominee is a pioneer Commissioner of Economic Planning and Budget in Lagos State in 1999 upon return to democratic rule under the government of Tinubu as governor of Lagos State.

In this capacity, he is reported to have written and monitored the implementation of the blueprint which catalysed economic development in the Lagos, better known as world’s sixth largest megacity, including leading to the state’s development of independent tax revenues.

His private sector experience includes an illustrious career with Citibank, Chase and Citizens International Bank.

He has served on the board of several leading companies, including Texaco and Chevron Oil Plc. He is a member of the Belgian-based Cities Alliance Think Tank which aims to shape and influence policy and decision making on urban development in Africa and has strong relationships with key international donor agencies.

Cardoso’s first degree is from the University of Aston, United Kingdom and his second degree from Harvard University, USA.

In 2017, he was awarded an honorary doctorate degree in business administration by his alma mater, Aston University, in recognition of “his outstanding contributions to business and society”.

Hereunder are four other unique things about the next CBN Governor:

* Dr. Cardoso is a financial and development expert with over 30 years’ experience in the private, public and not-for-profit sectors.

* He is a Nigerian banker, chartered stockbroker and public policy maker.

* He is the first Commissioner for Economic Planning and Budget in Lagos State in 1999.

* Cardoso is the founding chairman and co-chair of Ehingbeti Summit, the Lagos State annual economic summit.

CARDOSO IN A NUTSHELL

  1. Olayemi Cardoso, a Lagosian, grew up in Lagos and attended Corona School Ikoyi and St. Gregory’s College all in Lagos for his primary and secondary education, respectively.
  2. His father, Felix Bankole Cardoso, was the first indigenous Accountant-General of the Federation of Nigeria in 1963; and, the first indigenous Vice Chairman and Managing Director of Barclays Bank of Nigeria shortly after joining the bank in 1972. Under his leadership, Barclays successfully transformed into Union Bank of Nigeria, a wholly-owned Nigerian entity
  3. Yemi Cardoso completed his undergraduate studies upon obtaining a Bachelor’s degree in Managerial and Administrative Studies from Aston University in 1980.
  4. He later furthered his education at the Harvard Kennedy School of Government, earning a Master’s degree in Public Administration in 2005 as a Mason Fellow.
  5. In recognition of his outstanding achievements in the private and public sectors, Cardoso was granted a Doctorate in Business Administration (DBA) (honoris causa) by Aston University in 2017. He is also esteemed as a Fellow of the Chartered Institute of Stockbrokers.
  6. Olayemi Michael Cardoso is a Nigerian banker, chartered stockbroker and public policy expert.
  7. He has served for over four decades in the public, private and development sectors as a leader and innovator.
  8. Among his most impactful roles are: Commissioner in the Lagos State Ministry of Economic Planning and Budget; Chairman of the board of the African Venture Philanthropy Alliance and, most recently, Chairman of Citibank Nigeria Ltd for 12 years, until his resignation in 2022.
  9. Cardoso is a dedicated family man. He is married with five children and three grandchildren. His parents were descendants of Brazilian returnees and came from prominent families from Popo Aguda.

MORE ON CARDOSO

Mr Cardoso was the former chairman of Citibank Nigeria, and a distinguished leader in the financial and development sectors with over 30 years’ experience in the private, public and not-for-profit organisations.

With diverse corporate governance experience, Cardoso has also sat on the boards of Nigerian subsidiaries of Texaco and Chevron and chaired the board of EFInA, a financial sector development organisation supported by the Bill and Melinda Gates foundation.

He served in government as Commissioner for Economic Planning and Budget for Lagos State, where he championed the financial reform process which led to the state’s development of independent tax revenues.

In his capacity as a consultant and policy expert, Mr Cardoso has advised and collaborated with major international development organisations including the World Bank, Ford Foundation, UN Habitat, World Health Organisation and the Swedish Development Foundation.

He is the recipient of several awards including an honorary Doctorate Degree in Business Administration from Aston University, his alma mater, and the Global Distinguished Alumni award from Citi.

Mr Cardoso obtained a Masters in Public Administration from Harvard Kennedy School where he was a Fellow.

Though many has seen the appointment as Mr President’s sustaining trend in rewarding his loyalists, others has however, said that the nominee is a right choice.

Cardoso, who also will be assisted to perform by four nominated deputy governors, will assume full responsibility of the apex bank on confirmation by the Senate.

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Princess Adetutu Kasali Celebrates 50 Years of Remarkable Journey

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On 10th September 1973 , in Kainji, Niger State in Nigeria, the world was graced with the arrival of a remarkable individual, Adetutu Omobolanle Kasali.

Today, as we celebrate Princess Adetutu’s 50th birthday, we reflect upon five decades of a life well-lived, filled with incredible experiences, achievements, and enduring relationships.

Early Years and Family

Born into the loving embrace of parents, Queen Adetoro Olufumilayo and *HRM Oba (Engr.) Mufutau Adesanya Kasali, The Moyegeso of Itele Kingdom, Ogun State . Adetutu displayed an inherent curiosity and zest for life from an early age. Growing up in Ikoyi, Lagos, Adetutu was nurtured in an environment that instilled values of resilience, kindness, and determination.

Educational Pursuits and Career

Adetutu’s insatiable thirst for knowledge led her to pursue higher education at University of Lagos, and further obtained a masters degree in Information Science at the University College of London, United Kingdom. This solid foundation paved the way for an illustrious career in Information Technology.

Family and Personal Life

At the heart of Adetutu’s journey is her loving family. She is a devoted mother to her wonderful son Oluwaseyifumitan Moses.

50 Years of Impact

As Adetutu reaches this incredible milestone, we celebrate not only her personal achievements, but also her impact on the lives of those around her. Adetutu is a true sister, friend, mentor, and inspiration to many, always ready with a kind word, a helping hand, or a word of wisdom.

Princess Adetutu’s 50th birthday marks a milestone of wisdom, experience, and continued growth.

So, here’s to Adetutu Omobolanle Kasali, a shining example of a life well-lived, and to many more years of joy, love, and success.

Happy 50th Birthday Slim, as we fundly call her!

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GLOBACOM: Celebrating 20 Years of Market Leadership, Impact

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By Eric Elezuo

Hurray! Globacom is 20!

The story of Nigeria’s thriving indigenous telecommunication network, Glo, is a story of doggedness, commitment, dedication and unbroken focus. This is considering the fact that the originator of the brand ventured into a terrain hitherto unknown to Nigerian business, overcoming the harsh business environment, familiar intimidation and huge financial involvement.

It is worthy of note that the first step towards hoisting the Glo network was a herculean task on its own as the overriding fame of Econet and MTN, was already on the ground with experience and huge financial muscle, taking the available space and thriving in all ramifications. It therefore, only required a tough and out of the box business acumen to bring Glo to existence. And this was what the man known by many names including the Bull and Spirit of Africa, Dr. Michael Adenuga, did. He practically crashed the network ego, raising the customer to the kingship level and made him the sole concern of telecom business. This he did by bringing on board the famed per second billing; something nobody believed was possible.

The fact that the brand lost its initial $20 million after emerging as one of the four winners in the bid auction process to operate the just introduced Global System of Mobile telecommunications (GSM) in Nigeria, did not deter it from following the dream to give Nigerians equitable telecom service. The colossal loss may have been a blessing in disguise as it gave the team a leverage to come back smoking with ideas that changed the entire telecom world for good.

The brand is 20 years now, having waded through the murky waters of competition and churning out one great after another to the applaud of global citizens.

In a press statement celebrating the 20 years of impactful existence, and appreciation to Nigerians, the telecom giant lauded the government and people for their support.

The statement recalled that it had been two decades of transforming the telecommunications landscape, fulfilling dreams, and positively affecting the lives of millions of Nigerians.

“Since inception in 2003, Globacom has been true to  its resolve to provide world-class communications and digital services through constant deployment of latest technologies in line with the corporate promise to build a robust ICT network infrastructure that would consistently deliver value to its esteemed customers.

“Glo has been at the forefront of revolutionary changes in the telecommunication sector in Nigeria. It crashed the cost of acquiring SIM cards in the country from about N25,000 to just about N200. The network also disappointed bookmakers as it launched operations on a Per Second Billing platform, a feat others had described as impossible to achieve until another five years.

“Prominent among the innovations Glo pioneered in Nigeria are Blackberry, Multimedia Messaging Service (MMS), Magic Plus, Glo Direct, Glo Fonepals, Africhat, Glo Mobile Internet, GloFleetmanager, M-Banking and Glo Mobile Office. Glo was also the first to launch 2.5G, 3G and 4G LTE networks. It also singlehandedly built an international submarine cable, Glo 1 to connect West Africa directly to the United Kingdom and the rest of the world. It also connects 12 nations in the West African sub region, including some of them that are landlocked.

“Glo1 is credited with crashing the cost of internet services and is today the preferred cable system by global OTT providers. It connects thousands of kilometres of national fibre to all parts of Nigeria.

“As we celebrate our achievements these past twenty years, we wish to acknowledge that Globacom’s huge success is a result of the support of millions of Nigerians. We wish to thank them for their love and patronage and for the unprecedented confidence they have consistently shown in the company,” the company said.

“While restating its commitment to the provision of world-class communications and digital services in line with its corporate resolve to build a robust communications and technology infrastructure that would consistently deliver value to its esteemed customers at launch, Globacom noted, We will remain a catalyst for socio-economic empowerment not only in Nigeria but also in Africa. We will continue to invest massively in new technologies to exceed customer.”

In a nutshell, the story of the phenomenal impact and market leadership of Glo is better told by Glo itself as captured below:

The story of the rise of indigenous telecommunications company, Globacom, is like a fairytale.

It would be “remember clearly, as if it was yesterday, when its promoter and self-effacing billionaire, Dr Mike Adenuga, appeared to have hit a blank in his attempt to venture into the telecommunications business in 2000.

His company, Communications Investment Limited (CIL), was first issued a conditional licence in 1999 to operate the Global System of Mobile telecommunications (GSM). This followed its emergence as one of four winners of the bid auction process. Adenuga paid the $20 million mandatory deposit. However, in the process of effecting the release of the balance payment of $265 million, the licence was unfairly revoked and he lost the $20 million deposit. It was a colossal loss, but the bullish businessman who is renowned for his tenacity was undeterred. The other three winners, MTN, Airtel (then known as Econet) and M-tel proceeded to roll out services.

Two years later, Adenuga went on to bid for the Second National Operator (SNO) license, and deposited another $20 million. This time, he was lucky. He won the bid in August, 2002, through Globacom Limited. Incidentally, the SNO has a wider range of operations as it gave Globacom the right to operate as a national carrier, operate digital mobile service, serve as international gateway for telecommunications in the country, and operate fixed wireless service.

Globacom was to roll out services a year later, precisely on August 29, 2003. The odds were heavily stacked against Adenuga because by then, the other operators already had a two-year head start over Adenuga’s Glo. Secondly, he was venturing into a completely new terrain. Considering that MTN and Econet both had years of experience in the business in other countries, many expected Globacom to stutter.

However, the doubts soon evaporated. Not only did Globacom stun the industry by launching on per second billing, it also crashed the cost of acquiring a GSM line from N30,000 to N6,999 and later to N200. The older operators who, for two years boasted that it was not possible to launch operations on the billing platform as no operator in the world had done this before, were left playing catch up. Like a rampaging bull (which incidentally is Adenuga’s totem), Globacom embarked on a massive rollout of facilities and operations in several towns and cities across the country, and within nine months amassed over one million subscribers. Consequently, it established a reputation as the fastest growing GSM network in Africa.

Since that remarkable feat by Globacom, it has been one endearing success after another for the Nigerian company. In an industry where it was expected to lag behind the established multinational operators, Glo is not just rubbing shoulders with them, it has, indeed, been the pacesetter. It has come to be regarded as a behemoth in Nigeria’s telecom space.

It was the first operator to launch the 2.5 Generation technology, making the convergence of voice, data and multimedia technologies possible. Hence, Glo was able to launch such value added services as vehicle tracking, mobile internet, mobile banking, multimedia messaging service (MMS), voice SMS, and Text2email before the multinationals who were still running on 2G then.

Globacom also pioneered Blackberry Services in Nigeria, and the device was for a long time the rage among business executives and in social circles.

The introduction of the 3G Plus technology marked the second time that Globacom has been in the forefront of pioneering the latest transmission network in Nigeria. With this technology, Glo was able to carry out a much faster transmission of data, voice, broadband internet and multimedia services over a range of frequencies. It also allowed customers to do video call, video streaming and high-speed mobile internet access, amongst others, from their 3G mobile handsets.

Globacom was not done yet in setting the pace yet as it also become the first network to launch a nationwide 4G-LTE network in Nigeria. The technology offers efficient broadband internet to millions of Nigerians at speeds that are several times faster than the 3G network. Subscribers on the network are able to download ultra-high definition videos in seconds.

But perhaps one of the most audacious projects undertaken by Globacom was the construction of an international submarine cable, Glo 1. Launched in 2010, the project was said to have cost over $800 million. It was the first time a gigantic project of this nature had been undertaken by a single company.

The facility which has brought unprecedented bandwidth from Europe to Nigeria and other West African countries marked the beginning of the crashing of bandwidth costs in Nigeria and the rest of West Africa, thereby facilitating more access to broadband internet. With this intervention by Globacom, almost everyone who can afford a smartphone is able to use data. Also, according to industry sources, Glo 1 is currently providing the much needed connectivity to critical sectors of the economy. Companies in the Oil and gas, manufacturing, banking, commerce, education and health sectors as well as several multinational companies, including telecom operators and internet service providers (ISPs), are said to benefit from Glo 1.

Glo 1 has also played a major role in Nigeria’s broadband penetration which currently stands at 44.5 per cent. The penetration is principally driven by major players in the telecom sector, such as Glo 1. Globacom has also invested generously in the infrastructure to deliver the last mile to end-users, while also breaking the cost barrier by introducing affordable tariffs.

While commenting on the impact of Glo 1, Globacom sources said, “With the 4G expansion to tier 2 and 3 cities, Glo1 acts as the catalyst in propagating broadband penetration in Nigeria and acts as an enabler for enterprise customers to provide world class connectivity to all their offices and factories across Nigeria. Many cloud computing companies who cater to the Small and Medium Enterprises (SMES) are setting up shop within the Glo partnered data centers. Using Globacom’s robust terrestrial infrastructure, Glo1 has seized this opportunity to backhaul their traffic to other data centers across the world.”

It is remarkable that it is a Nigerian company that has pulled off this ambitious project. One of Adenuga’s close associates said the idea of building a submarine cable berthed when the entrepreneur went on a business trip to Paris, the French capital, sometime around 2008. While there, he found out that telephone calls to Nigeria were epileptic unlike the connection between France and other parts of Europe. When he made enquiries about what could be done to solve the problem, he was told it was to have an international submarine cable. There and then, Dr Adenuga decided to build Glo 1, and the rest is now history. The project is a testament to the entrepreneurial spirit and foresight of the man behind Globacom.

For those who know Adenuga well, it was not surprising that Glo was able to quickly established itself as the pacesetter in the industry, despite commencing business two years after MTN and Airtel (then called Econet).

Other areas Globacom has effectively set itself apart are customer-empowerment, sustainability and promotion of Nigeria’s arts and cultural heritage.  From 2003 when it commenced operations to date, no company has affected the lives of its subscribers and, indeed, the Nigerian people the way the telecommunications company has done.

Over the years, the company has launched series of promos through which different types of empowerment prizes including millions of naira in cash prizes, luxury cars, tricycles, sewing machines, generators, television sets and grinding machines have been won by Nigerians across the country.

For so many years, it supported the development of Nigerian sports through the sponsorship of the Nigerian Premier League and the national football teams of Nigeria when no other corporate organisation wanted to touch the assets. The company spent billions of naira in developing the Nigerian league and national teams, and this culminated in Enyimba Football Club winning the prestigious Champions League twice in a row, while the Super Eagles won the Nations Cup in 2013. 

Nigeria’s entertainment industry has also received a massive boost from the telecom operator. It has so far brought two of the world’s biggest reality television shows to the country. They are X-Factor, which produced DJ Switch as winner, and the Battle of the Year which was held between October last year and April, this year.

In addition to this, Globacom has over the years also held its own music and comedy shows across different cities and campuses across the country. The shows, including Rock ‘n’ Rule, GloNaija Sings, Laffta Fest, Slide and Bounce concert, and Glo mega Music, were some of the platforms through which Globacom entertained and delighted Nigerians. But more importantly they helped deepen the entertainment industry by giving budding talents in music and comedy and platform to showcase their abilities.

Similarly, the nation’s art and culture have also been positively touched by Globacom. From Ojude Oba in Ijebu-Ode, Ofala in Onitsha, Lisabi in Abeokuta, Imeori in Abriba, Oru – Owerri in Imo state, amongst others, the company has through sponsoring the festivals not only brought theme to international limelight, but has also turned them into major tourist attractions.

There is hardly any aspect of life that has not been positively touched by the telecommunications company.

Looking back at the gigantic milestones it has recorded, one would find it difficult to believe that it is just 19 years old. But would any less be expected from a company founded by Dr Mike Adenuga? He made clear his intention from the beginning with a very bold vision statement, “Building Africa’s biggest and best telecommunications network”. He is known to think and dream big – a very tenacious and dogged entrepreneur who likes to grow his businesses to dominate the sectors he operates in. Globacom has not only matched the multinational operators pound for pound, but it has, indeed, dominated Nigeria’s telecommunications sector these past 19 years.

Glo, As Nigeria’s Empowerment Champion

Globacom has not only transformed the telecoms sector with its technological infrastructure, product innovations and quality service delivery, but it has also shown unparalleled commitment  to improving the lives of its customers. Its empowerment  initiatives cut across Innovation and Affordability, which have given millions of Nigerians access to telephony and allied services, Entertainment, Sports and Promotions, Festivals, among others.

Innovation and Affordability

Glo was the only operator in Africa to launch its operations on the superior 2.5G network which enabled the convergence of voice, data and multimedia technologies.

But more importantly, it launched operations on Per Second Billing, thus ensuring subscribers only pay for actual time spent on a call instead of the practice of billing customers N50 per minute event when the call cuts off at just 2 seconds.  It also crashed the cost of SIM card from N30,000 to N6,999 and later N100, thereby making it possible for low income earners, students and artisans are able to own a GSM line today.

With its massive investments in building over 20,000 kilometres of fibre optic backbone across the country, 4G technology  and Glo1, the first ever individually owned international submarine cable from the United Kingdom to Nigeria, Globacom has availed its subscribers the much needed internet bandwidth. This has led to what is called the democratization of data. For instance, with just N500, a Glo subscriber will get 2GB data, with N50 the customer gets 50MB, N100 gives 150MB. For big users on the network, they can get 675GB for N75,000 and 1Tera Byte (TB) for N100,000. The company also gives double data bonus to Glo subscribers. No wonder it is called the grandmasters of data by admirers!

Apart from boosting internet service to end users, Glo 1 is also providing connectivity to essential sectors of the economy such as oil and gas, manufacturing, banking, commerce, education and health, among others.

Entertainment

Globacom has always been associated with the development of the Nigerian music industry, since its inception, from its involvement with Nollywood and leading Nigerian music talents to the sponsorship of music shows such as Rock ‘n’ RuleGloNaija Sings, Laffta Fest, and  the world’s number one music singing talent reality TV show, X Factor. Others are Slide and Bounce concert, an entertainment tour which went round all the Geo-political zones of the country as well as Glo mega Music show, another platform through which Globacom entertains and delights Nigerians.

These programmes are meant to discover and help nurture budding talents. The company also supports the movie industry in Nigeria (Nollywood) and in Ghana (Ghollywood). Many of the actors and actresses in both countries have been chosen as Glo Ambassadors, thus projecting the continent in a refreshing light through African movies.

Globacom brought the world’s biggest dance reality show, Battle of the Year, to Nigeria. The winners in seven different categories went home with mega millions in cash, space wagon , and also bagged an opportunity to represent at the global edition of the competition.

Indeed, no corporate organization has had the kind of assemblage of entertainment heavyweights as it brand ambassadors as Globacom. All through the years, the cream of the country’s musicians, footballers, actors and comedians have either been signed on as brand ambassadors or featured in the company’s television commercials. The long list includes veterans such as late Osita Osadebe, late Oliver d’Coque, King Sunny Ade, Ebenezar Obey, Nelly Uchendu, Mikel Obi, Victor Moses, Osaze Odemwingie  and Emmanuel Emenike. Others are MI Abaga, D’Banj, PSquare, Rita Dominic, Ini Edo, Flavour, Wizkid, Davido, Basketmouth, Gordons, I go Dye, Juliet Ibrahim, Matter Ankomah, Joselyn Dumas, Michael Essien, former World Heavyweight Boxing Champion, Anthony Joshua and track queen, Tobi Amusan

Life-changing Promotions:

One area where Globacom has connected with its subscribers and Nigerians generally is loyalty-reward Promos. Over the years, the company has launched series of promos through which different types of empowerment prizes have been won by Nigerians across the country. From Glo Overload to Glo Allawee, Text4Millions, Made for Life, Recharge to Stardom, 180 cars in 180 days, Glo CAF Award promo, Recharge and Win Big popularly known as My Own Don Beta, Everyday Bonanza, and Joy Unlimited Extravaganza, Nigerians have benefitted massively from Globacom and many have been empowered through the Glo promos.

Between October, 2021, and January, 2022, Globacom held a life-changing promotion called Joy Unlimited Extravaganza. Thousands of Glo subscribers won brand new Kia Rio cars, refrigerators, television sets and generators across the country. Altogether, 500,000 prizes were given out.

Promotion of Nigeria’s Cultural Heritage

Over the years, Glo has partnered with several communities across the country on the sponsorship of major festivals and promotion of culture and traditions.  These include Ojude Oba in Ijebu-Ode, Ofala in Onitsha, Lisabi in Abeokuta, Imeori in Abiriba, Oru – Owerri in Imo state, Afia- Orlu In Nnewi  and Abia –Ugwa in Isialangwa in Abia State. Through these sponsorships, Glo is giving a new lease of life to the festivals as well as empowering some lucky individuals in the communities through various prizes won at special promotions held during the festivals. The company has not only brought these festivals to international limelight, but has also turned them into major tourist attractions. This association has helped build up Globacom as an enviable brand.”

Glo’s phenomenal impact extends to hosting of comedy shows and encouragement of footballers to further their careers, not only in Nigeria, but across the West African suburb

In 2019, the brand’s sponsored comedy show, Bovi Man on Fire, was held in Warri, Delta State. The show was described by many as a perfect way to celebrate Easter. Not only that, the company delighted its subscribers with free tickets to attend the fun-filled event anchored by ace comedian, Bovi Ugboma. Other humour merchants that graced the show were Kelvin Sapp, Young Chief Odogwu, MC Shakara and Mr. Flexy.

In 2023 alone, Glo launched Glo Green Lotto, a service aimed at enhancing the opportunities for its gaming subscribers to play and win; partnered with PalmPay, to launch a new marketing initiative tagged: “PalmPay Bonanza – Recharge Glo and Win,” which offers Nigerians who buy Glo data and airtime bundles via the PalmPay platform, the chance to win fantastic prizes, and sponsored the African Voices Changemakers.

In 20 impactful years, Glo has become a symbol of glory, and epitomizes growth and development.

The company is gearing up to sponsor once again the Ofala Festival in Anambra State.

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