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Opinion: Do companies gain anything from Brand Ambassadorship?

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The past decade has been a very interesting one in Nigeria. We have grown as a people and have caught up with globalization trends. The emergence of indigenous and multinational telecommunication companies (“Telcos”) , FMCGs, and a host of other companies have been great additions to our country in terms of job creation; both direct and indirect, contribution to GDP and proving that companies can thrive here as well and even better than they thrive in their home countries.

The aim of every business is to make profit and the race for the largest customer base and by extension more income has led most companies especially the Telcos to embark on creative campaigns to achieve this goal.

We’ve had some great campaigns like: Magic Number, 100-200 % bonus on recharge (which at first could only call customers of that specific network but now cuts across all networks), free data et al.

I was recently on the Third Mainland Bridge and I saw a big poster of a Telco selling a product with the image of a celebrity which was the inspiration for this article, it got me thinking: Is the Nigerian Market (emphasis being placed on the Telco Industry) fully ready for Brand Ambassadorship? Let’s analyze this together: Can you replace your green Sim card with a red one because a catchy advert with a popular face reading a script tells you that the red telco has a better network coverage?

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Most of us would rather add the red Sim card to their collection of Light GreenDark Green and Yellow Sim Cards.  This still increases the income of the red telco but did you change your Sim because the popular face said so or would you still have done it if your neighbor/friend/spouse excitedly told you about its good network coverage?

I understand that the logic behind using popular faces to sell brands may be because of their appeal to the masses, their following on social media and their influence in and on society but does this really work in Nigeria?

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Bear in mind that having 2,000,000 followers on twitter and 3,000,000 followers on Instagram doesn’t total 5,000,000 because most people are on all social media platforms and it is safe to assume that this celebrity is followed by some of the same people on both platforms so 2,000,000+ 3,000,000 probably sums up to 3,500,000 in this case. I am aware that there are other criterion for choosing these ambassadors but Social Media following is key.

The Mobile Number Portability (MNP) exercise serves as further proof. All Telcos except one (can you guess which one) mesmerized us with countless adverts while taking subtle and subliminal jabs at each other as to why we should port from our present carrier to theirs. Radio jingles, Tv Adverts, Banners, Mobile Marketers… the whole razzmatazz, it was the rave of the moment but at the end of it all, what did they gain?

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Data from The National Communications Commission [NCC] as at July 2017, reveals only 757,000 subscribers have ported since it was introduced in May 2013. This number pales in comparison to the total number of active and registered users in Nigeria which was put at 138.7 million as at July 2017 (Click here to see their database). Only 0.55% actually ported after all the media hype? I’m as shocked as you are, it’s almost safe to say that we don’t have Telecommunication Brand Loyalty or even celebrity culture as a country.

These Telcos all have their strong and weak points in Nigeria; Telco A may be good with calls but bad with Internet Surfing which Telco B has in abundance and vice versa so why won’t I have both lines and use each where appropriate? The Two and Three Sim card phones on the market keep on selling daily and this serves as further proof that the average Nigerian isn’t loyal to a specific Network Carrier. The high end phone manufacturers have also keyed into this market and I won’t be surprised if we soon have a 2/3 Sim IPhone.

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The Mobile Number Portability (MNP) exercise serves as further proof. All Telcos except one (can you guess which one) mesmerized us with countless adverts while taking subtle and subliminal jabs at each other as to why we should port from our present carrier to theirs. Radio jingles, Tv Adverts, Banners, Mobile Marketers… the whole razzmatazz, it was the rave of the moment but at the end of it all, what did they gain?

These Telcos all have their strong and weak points in Nigeria; Telco A may be good with calls but bad with Internet Surfing which Telco B has in abundance and vice versa so why won’t I have both lines and use each where appropriate? The Two and Three Sim card phones on the market keep on selling daily and this serves as further proof that the average Nigerian isn’t loyal to a specific Network Carrier. The high end phone manufacturers have also keyed into this market and I won’t be surprised if we soon have a 2/3 Sim IPhone.

This article was sent in to Nairametrics by Olowokore Isaac. Follow him on twitter @FollowMeTalk

Nairametrics frequently publishes articles from experts such as financial analysts, economists, researchers and investors. We also feature articles from guest writers and bloggers who wish to push their views and opinions through our platform. To get your articles on Nairametrics, kindly send an email to [email protected] and we will publish it within 24 hours of approval by our editorial team.

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MSME

FG says 174,574 successfully register for N75 billion MSME survival fund in 48 hours

174,574 persons have successfully registered for schemes under the Nigeria Economic Sustainability Plan.

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FG releases new details on MSMEs support scheme, budgets N200 billion for loans, FG says 174,574 successfully register for N75 billion MSME survival fund in 48 hours

The Federal Government has disclosed that a total of 174,574 persons successfully registered for the N75bn National MSME Survival Fund and the Guaranteed Off-take Stimulus schemes under the Nigeria Economic Sustainability Plan, within 48 hours.

The disclosure was made by the Minister of Industry, Trade and Investment, Ambassador Mariam Katagum, during a media briefing on the update of the schemes, on Thursday, September 24, 2020.

Mariam Katagum, in her statement, said: “As at 8.30 am this (Thursday) morning, total successful registrations stood at 174,574 with the following states having the highest applications as follows: Kano, 19,895; Kaduna, 13,575; Lagos, 13,640; Katsina: 8,383; Federal Capital Territory, 8,085.”

She stated that the registration for the MSME Survival Fund commenced on September 21, 2020, at 11 pm, and within 24 hours, approximately 138,000 individuals had logged on, created profiles and completed the first stage of registration with Kano, Kaduna and Lagos as lead states.

(READ MORE: Nigeria’s external reserves up by 7% in 21 days, currency speculators to lose over N10 billion)

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Going further, Katagum said, “All successful applicants received SMS and email verification with a list of requirements for the second stage of application which would commence on October 1, 2020. Applicants will be required to upload details supporting their applications which will be verified and if successful, approved for disbursements.”

The minister further disclosed the states that recorded the highest numbers of applications within the first 24 hours of registration; these are Kano, which recorded 16,880: Kaduna, 11,438; Lagos, 10, 530; Katsina, 7,354; and Bauchi, 6,622.

Explore the Nairametrics Research Website for Economic and Financial Data

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She also stated that registration for other tracks would start next with the hospitality industry coming on September 25, 2020, by 10 am; payroll support (others), September 28, 2020, 10 am; while artisan/transport grants would start on October 1, 2020.

Nairametrics had two days ago reported the opening of the portal for its N75 billion Micro, Small and Medium (MSMEs) Survival Fund and Guaranteed Off-take schemes with effect from 10 pm on Monday, September 21, 2020.

READ: Delivering mass housing as a path to Nigeria’s economic recovery

These two MSMEs initiatives namely MSMEs Survival Fund with payroll support track and the Guaranteed Offtake Scheme which are at the core of FG’s N2.3 stimulus package in the Economic Sustainability Plan, were introduced by it as part of the efforts to help businesses overcome challenges posed by the Covid-19 pandemic.

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How to register for FG’s N75 billion MSME survival funds

FG released guidelines to access the N75 billion MSME Survival Fund.

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MSME, How to register for FG's N75 billion MSME survival funds, Small Businesses in Nigeria

The Federal Government (FG) has released the guidelines to access the N75 billion Micro, Small and Medium Enterprises (MSME) Survival Fund and Support Initiatives, which took effect from September 21, 2020.

The scheme, which is the core of the N2.3 trillion stimulus package of the Nigerian Economic Sustainability Plan includes the N60 billion MSMEs Survival Fund and the N15 billion Guaranteed Offtake Schemes.

This disclosure was made in an official statement by the Federal Government through a series of tweet posts on its official Twitter handle.

READ: FG to provide financial support for 1.7 million businesses, individuals in next 3 months

The statement from FG read, “As the portal for the registration of prospective beneficiaries of Survival Fund opens, interested Nigerians in the Payroll Support Scheme are to note that the site will be open from 10 pm Monday, September 21, 2020.”

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The statement says that the registration for the payroll support will start with the educational institutions at 10 pm Monday, September 21, 2020, and will be followed by businesses in the hospitality industry by 12am Friday, September 25, 2020.

The portal will also open for other categories of small businesses from 12am, Monday, September 28, 2020. It should be noted that the scheduling of the registration for prospective beneficiaries is to ensure that the process is seamless and hitch-free. The registration of every sector is to continue until Thursday, October 15, 2020.

READ: FG to save N1 trillion annually from petrol subsidy removal

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To register for this initiative, the Federal Government has also provided a portal for entry. Potential beneficiaries are advised to log on to https://survivalfund.ng to complete their registration.

As part of the registration process, the beneficiaries are expected to provide personal registration details, activate their account, register their organization after they have successfully activated their account.

Corporate Affairs Commission (CAC) Number, Bank Verification Number (BVN), SMEDAN Number, a Tax ID (optional) and the organization’s bank account details will be needed.

Completing the Payroll Support Registration, beneficiaries’ first name, last name, email, mobile number and Password will be required. Also, their Date of Birth, residential address and residential Local Government Area will also be provided.

READ: FG releases new details on MSMEs support scheme, budgets N200 billion for loans

These 2 MSMEs initiatives namely MSMEs Survival Fund with payroll support track and the Guaranteed Offtake Scheme were introduced by the FG as part of the efforts to support businesses overcome challenges posed by the Covid-19 pandemic.

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The MSMEs Survival Fund scheme is a conditional grant to support vulnerable micro and small enterprises in meeting their payroll obligations and safeguard jobs in the MSMEs sector. The scheme is expected to save at least 1.3 million jobs across the country and specifically impact on over 35,000 individuals per state.

READ: Nigeria’s external reserves up by 7% in 21 days, currency speculators to lose over N10 billion 

The scheme will be implemented over an initial period of 3 months and is targeted at employees of MSMEs and self-employed individuals with 45% for female business participation and 5% for special needs participation

The Guaranteed Off Take Stimulus Scheme is expected to perfect and sustain the income of vulnerable micro and small enterprises from the economic disruptions of the Covid-19 pandemic through the implementation of various initiatives aimed at boosting the production capacities of small businesses as well as the provision of grants.

The duration is also for an initial period of 3 months and is targeted at micro and small businesses registered in Nigeria.

 

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FG to provide financial support for 1.7 million businesses, individuals in next 3 months

FG had announced specific programmes aimed at cushioning the impact of COVID-19 on MSME businesses.

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FG releases new details on MSMEs support scheme, budgets N200 billion for loans, FG says 174,574 successfully register for N75 billion MSME survival fund in 48 hours

The Federal Government has announced plans to provide financial support for 1.7 million businesses and individuals across the country within the next 3 months.

This disclosure was made by the Minister of State for industry, Trade and Investment, Ambassador Mariam Katagum, at the virtual commissioning of the Fashion Cluster Shared Facility for Micro, Small, and Medium Enterprises (MSMEs) tagged, Eko Fashion Hub, in Lagos.

Katagum disclosed that the initiative is borne out of the Federal Government’s continued commitment to helping cushion the devastating impact of the coronavirus pandemic on the economy by saving existing jobs and creating new job opportunities.

READ: FG releases new details on MSMEs support scheme, budgets N200 billion for loans

The minister said that President Muhammadu Buhari’s administration, through the Economic Sustainability Committee, had announced specific programmes aimed at cushioning the impact of COVID-19 on MSME businesses.

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She said, “The Federal Government is fully committed to empowering Nigerians; more so in the face of the COVID-19 Pandemic. In this regard, the government, through the Economic Sustainability Committee had announced specific programmes aimed at cushioning the impact of COVID-19 on MSME businesses.

“These programmes include among others, the N75 billion MSME Survival Fund and Guaranteed Off-take Schemes of which I have the honour to chair the Steering Committee for the effective implementation of the projects.

READ: NNPC reveals survival strategies to cope with the oil sector downturn and new normal

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“The project, which will run for an initial period of three months, is targeting 1.7million entities and individuals and has provisions for 45 per cent female-owned businesses and five per cent for those with special needs. The registration portal for the schemes is set to open on Monday 21st September 2020 and I urge you all to take full advantage of the schemes.’

The Nigerian Economic Sustainability Plan which was produced by a committee headed by the Vice President, Yemi Osinbajo, is a response to the health and economic challenges which foisted on the country by the outbreak of the novel coronavirus pandemic.

READ: FG to save N1 trillion annually from petrol subsidy removal

Aside from developing robust monetary policies and fiscal measures to enhance oil and non-oil government revenues and reduce non-essential spending, the plan also includes a N2.3 trillion stimulus package for the economy.

Katagum said that the schemes were at the core of the N2.3 trillion stimulus package being implemented by the Federal Government. She said that the commissioning of shared facilities was also expected to provide succour and relief to the teeming micro-businesses in need of space and infrastructural support

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