Powering Nigeria


Sarah Caddy

“By 2050, there will be more Nigerians than Americans”. The wake-up call to the country’s capacity for prominence came from the BBC’s Komla Dumor (@BBCkomladumor), chair of a morning panel at EMPEA and This Is Africa’s most recent African private equity conference in London.

Komla was speaking to a converted audience; his panel on ‘Realising Africa’s economic promise’ focused almost entirely on the opportunities for investment in that country. The sector of preference was also clear, with Jan Rielaender, Economist at The Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) citing access to power as the leading concern for small companies – and drivers of growth – in Nigeria. With investors vying for the opportunity to provide capital, infrastructure and expertise to rehabilitate the Nigerian power sector following its privatisation process, it awaits to be seen how long it will take for a steady power supply to run. Predictions in the coffee breaks centred around the 4-5 year mark.

Speaking in a keynote session, Arunma Oteh, Director General, at the Securities and Exchange Commission, Nigeria also highlighted technology as a particular focus for fundraising. Well she might: Nigeria’s internet subscriber base grew from 200,000 in 2000 to over 44 million by 2010, and the country’s internet business is estimated to be worth $250 million. The fact that the future of the technology sector’s success also depends upon power infrastructure investment merely highlights that for now, the focus must be on powering up Nigeria.

What do journalists want?


Sally Maier

Last week I attended a Gorkana media briefing with Jonathan Grun, Editor at The Press Association. In his view, “interesting stories” and “speed of response” are the secret to building long-lasting relationship with journalists.

Having worked in the PR industry in various cities for almost a decade, I wondered if other journalists shared the same view. With this in mind, I asked a few media industry friends what they thought made a good PR. Here are their responses:

  • TV producer, Channel NewsAsia TV news station, Singapore: “Journalists want to tell the best story within deadline, outshine rival media outlets, and be first with the news. PR folk who understand this and help provide the stories they need (with good multimedia elements) earn lots of goodwill and become good friends”
  • Reporter, Oriental Daily News, Hong Kong: “Regular catch-ups help and casual chats can build up friendships. If possible, say lunch every few months. For those who are in a different country, call or send a Christmas card”
  • Freelance writer, The Guardian, UK: “I generally contact PRs when I need information or a quote, often at short notice. The PRs that I go back to time and again are those who are quick to respond to inquiries, who are competent in their subject area and who have the ear of their clients so they can get the ball rolling”
  • Reporter, China Daily Europe: “I think it’s personal interest and friendship as opposed to work. My PR friends don’t talk about their clients when we meet for lunch, coffee or other things. We just become friends.”
  • UK-based freelance writer, Billionaire.com, Singapore: “Keep supplying relevant information that can be used going forward – or that builds a clear picture of the fields in which your key strengths/contacts lie”


So, my unscientific poll suggests Jonathan Grun is right – interesting news stories and speed of response are key to cultivating long-lasting relationships between PRs-Journalists. But so are regular, informal face-to-face catch-ups. Lunch anyone?


Maximizing returns on your corporate brand: using social media to become a market leader


Sarah Caddy

By 2017, more than 3.6 billion people will be online, representing 48 percent of the world’s projected population.

Innovations, hatched in the minds of tech savvy innovators are now deployed by businesses as the marketing norm. But implementing a robust social media strategy demands not only preparation, but also constantly fresh and interesting content. It’s a long term relationship, not just a quick fling.

Knowing this, the time-poor private equity industry has been – in the main – slow to capitalize on social media’s potential within their online strategy. That is not to say there is no interest; a recent survey has shown that over a third of EMPEA members have corporate Twitter accounts. It’s just that few actually use them.

The following article outlines how a few select social media channels can be employed to maximize the effectiveness of brand and IR commitments.

Download the article here >>