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Telecom Colonization Imminent – Daranijo



Sinari Daranijo, Chief Executive Officer, Elcomserve Nigeria Limited
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Sinari Daranijo, Chief Executive Officer, Elcomserve Nigeria Limited – a conglomerate of Security, Telecom and IT professionals.
He is a highly successful unique individual with immeasurable business acumen and has accumulated diverse business portfolios ranging from International Business, Oil & Gas, Business Development, Commerce & Industry, Training & Development, Information Technology, Strategic Management and Safety with over 18 years of relevant experience.
He spoke to Peter Ugwu on the company’s newly invented Nigeria’s first instant messaging/chat platform – Simply Beep and the state of the nation’s telecom industry. 

Elcomserve in Nigeria’s Telecom Business
We have a mix of professionals to provide great solutions for the development of the country and the people.
And one of our major target areas is to make things easier for people on the global scale by using the telecommunication platform.
When telecom was liberalised in Nigeria we actually started by providing infrastructure, equipment like radios, antenna, masts etcetera.
Everything is in stages. After they achieved that feat, the next step was to maintain the existing infrastructure, so that clients and customers can have value for their money and speak to themselves.
So that after acquiring huge voice subscriptions, the SMS promos, text-to-win were inspired, and now the next level is providing service for value added creation which has given rise to increase in the use of data.
For us at Elcomserve, we thought that now that the world is going digital everyone will end up in the internet, whether we like it or not.
So, we considered having a data plan that will be all encompassing, a gate into the world. We discovered that these days the spirit of chatting is beginning to encompass and engulf the entire world – it is easier to be on an IM platform than being on an SMS one.
We also discovered that while the whole world is going ahead, talk about android, iPod, Africa is lagging behind a bit because of high poverty level.
However, the chat experience is presently only available on that higher level, so we thought, ‘what can we do to bring it lower?’, hence we have created a product called Simply Beep.
It is supposed to help people who are using ordinary phones to tap into the experience of the upper-class users of smartphones.
It will open up a huge avenue into the entire system. But of course we have our challenges, even the people who work with the network operators do not completely understand because they are all following the world trend.
We have statistics: out of about 100 million subscribers on all the GSM networks in Nigeria, only about 3 million have BlackBerry and other smart phones.
We have about 97 million others who do not possess a BlackBerry or Smartphone.
For the most part, we have concentrated on those at the top.
 We need to connect with those on the other end of the divide. So, we decided to do something that will allow more people to have access to chat platform, people like students, artisans, house wives, etc, they are willing and ready to chat.
Beep is already available for download with the MTN network and we are concluding talks with all other mobile network providers in the country.
Beep and Local Lingua
The product has local lingual significance.
The reason why it is deployed in local lingua is to separate us from the crowd. And it will actually make the product proudly Nigerian.
Our local Pidgin-English is also something now respected and subscribed to in some parts of the world, owing to our music and movie industry.
Therefore, our move is to capture that segment of the society and endear them to the product. The emoticons such as “Laugh wan kill me die”, “I beg wait” and “I dey vex,” are some of the unique features of Simply Beep.

Although there are other competing brands in the market – they have higher-end products – not necessarily mass friendly and not directly pushed to the people.
The reason why it’s taking some time for us to leverage on our own product is because we are stepping into a market with a new experience, and by pulling these people into a new experience it now means that we need to throw the product directly to their phones, unlike those other competitors that subscribers have to download from the internet.
That is our strategy, but it was tough pushing the networks to understand what we are talking about, because all they can see is the upper class people.
We had to make them see that Nigerians are highly motivated people.

Economic Values
Now, when you look at it from the point of economic value, the social media is a very big platform.
Increasing the dissemination of information, helps two or more people engage in interaction, increases communal feelings, etc.
So, all the advantages of social media are what we are bringing to the fore, especially for those who won’t otherwise use data services.
Our underlying philosophy however, is: own something. We don’t create, own or produce anything as Africans.
Over 50 per cent of what we wear on our bodies is foreign made. And that is why we shall continue to have local content problems.
Shoprite is here and you are all excited, it is not your money! If you go there to shop, they take the money and develop their own countries.
Why can’t we build our own platforms? This is the age of social platform. And I am building this platform in pain, because banks don’t support me. Even the networks, it was a battle to make them buy into this.
And that is the story of Nigeria, even the government does not understand.
But we need to build platforms that are ours. It will checkmate capital flight, because presently, when N10 is plugged into Nigeria’s economy, N5 out of it leaves the country.

Nigeria in Telecom Market
The world telecommunication market is expanding.
The data accompanying all products pushed to Africa are being kept by foreign companies. The problem with Nigerians is that we are not creators; we would want to leverage on what everybody brings to us.
We can do something even better; something we can call our own.
If Nigeria can boast of a chat platform we hold as ours, rather than depend on outsiders, then it is the beginning of great things to come in the Nigerian telecommunications market.

That is where the global village phenomenon comes in, because we are still battling with electricity and all that, what we have done is to partner RackSpace that hosts servers for many other companies in the world.
RackSpace keeps all our chats and everything.
There is a room in the cloud that is dedicated to us. Reason why we have gone to that level is to ensure we do not tell our subscribers stories.
The problem we are having with the network operators is their inability to see that this project is important for the nation, because local content is not always the best for the expatriate companies.
It’s just the way the oil companies operate; we need a lion-hearted Minister who will put it on the expatriate companies to align themselves with the domestic inventors.
Do we have government functionaries who understand what mobile application developers go through?

Human Resources
We need to have telecom people in government; those who understand the nitty-gritty of the business so as to harness the potentials.
Your software is nothing until it goes out to the public. Nigeria must do everything within our powers to run away from impending telecom colonization.
It is a serious issue; there is no sector that the foreigners are not dominating.
We need to have Nigerians hold some gates in the sector. They know it, but there is not enough passion to drive it.
We have the best of policies in place, but the implementation is the problem. You remember when the telecom market was initially liberalised, NITEL had 400,000 lines and owned all infrastructure associated with the industry.
The new private operators were begging NITEL (for infrastructure sharing), but now they have all built their own infrastructures and its NITEL through the government begging them (for accommodation).
So, the bigger you are, the less stress, because you don’t have to talk to anybody.    
Government’s Involvement  
The connection between government and the realities ends in speeches. We need to have people who feel the pain to make things happen.
We need the government and the industry to understand each other by communicating on a regular basis, so we can deliver a resultant technological effect to the people at the grassroots.     

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The Winning Habits of Successful Forex Traders



Abiola Akinyele, General Manager of FXTM Nigeria
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By Abiola Akinyele, General Manager of FXTM Nigeria


Who is a forex trader?

A forex trader is an individual who exchanges one currency for another in the global financial market. The financial market is an over-the-counter (OTC) market, where financial instruments are traded. It is considered the largest and most liquid market in the world, with a daily turnover of over 5.6 trillion dollars.


Anyone who wishes to become a successful trader is responsible for honing their skills through education and consistent practice. At FXTM, we believe educated traders are successful traders, which is why we run very detailed seminars and workshops, both at an introductory and advanced level at our offices and training centers here in Nigeria.


Anyone can train to become a disciplined trader, through self-analysis to see what drives their operations and also learning from their mistakes &forex psychology.


It is a fact that successful traders think and act differently. They  usually have specific habits and usually follow a series of steps or patterns which guide them daily as they trade in the markets.


When you start trading forex, you know that it can be very lucrative and rewarding, but this does not mean that you do not have risks, or that 100% of the time you will be successful.  It is important that you master the basic concepts and understand the foundations necessary to excel to become successful.


Get going!


To achieve what you want, you must focus on trading and make it part of your daily actions. You must alsounderstand that behavior is an integral part of the trading process and thus your attitude and mindset should reflect the following attributes. Let’s have a look.


  1. Manage your money


There is not a single successful trader who does not know how to manage their money. The art of understanding money management – knowing how much you can invest and afford to risk, in addition to being able to establish the appropriate losses and thus take profits at the right time, are skills that are indispensable and that you must acquire. You must preserve your capital always and at all costs, in order to possibly generate wealth in the long-term.


  1. Manage your emotions


Remember that in forex trading there is no place for emotion of any kind.If both the winners and the losers act in the same way, the operations will be executed in a more professional manner and without drastic changes.


You can achieve this with calmness and dedication; for example, if you are upset because one of your trades is experiencing losses, try to take a break from the trade. You can reintegrate once you have calmed down.


Avoid making any emotional decisions, as this can lead you to commit commercial mistakes and disasters that will result in losses.


  1. Take advantage of demo accounts and use them until you are ready


Demo accounts are usually a great way to test the waters in a place where it is not risky since you do not lose real money.


This applies above all if you are a newbie and so you can try different trading platforms. But once you feel very prepared to start a live account, you may try it, and take a chance.


  1. Run your winners in order to have as many benefits as possible


Now, in the financial markets, there are many beginners who think that the best traders are the ones who are always right.  This is a myth because in the world of trading, not everything is theory.


Then, once you have found an asset in which you are good, hold on to it and learn to polish that skill. You should always learn to obtain benefits that are significant enough as this is the only way in which you can cover your losses.


  1. Cut losses early


By taking into account how difficult it is to beprofitable in the competitive forex world, you must keep an eye on them and are willing to cut losses ahead of time, even if they are your profitable trades.


This means that when the market moves against you, you should not trust that it will return soon. Of course, unless there is a signal that is clear and precise and expresses what will happen in the market, in that case, leave soon and go to the next, always with the hope that it might beprofitable.


  1. Learn from your mistakes and see them as knowledge


You learn while doing it. That is why you should not allow a bad experience to truncate the path to success.


It’s a learning curve that would allow better decision-making in the future.


  1. Find the perfect strategy and repeat


It is well-known that trading can belike a big battle to take money out of the market. And to be able to achievethis in the most appropriateway, you will need a repeatable and efficient strategy that works for you in the long run. The market is always changing, which means that you will sometimes need to make adjustments to your strategy.  That way, you will mightmore chances to win if you can find a way to make your strategy works. Don´t waste more time.


  1. Separate your life habits from the trading habits


It is important that you can make time and maintain a balanced lifestyle to your life outside of trading. Having a healthy and calm lifestyle requires that you take regular breaks from trading during the day. This will help you to make better trading decisions and as a result, you will have more chances of being successful.


  1. Search and use methods that have been tested and you can prove it.


Do not believe everything you read and see on the internet, remember that it is a minefield of lies and people seeking profits on the backs of frauds.


That is why you should look for a real test of the methods that are being promoted to you and verify that they really work well.


This insurance process can include going with current trends, also reducing your losses, in case you are seeing a benefit, or letting go.


  1. Never forget the risk / reward


Do not forget that there is always a risk before a reward. The ratio of risk to reward is not going to be the same all the time, due to the fast-moving nature of the financial market. There are times when it may seem that you are failing in the trade with the risk you see, only so that everything can become a reward in this way.

Then you can proceed to make your withdrawals and they can be about half of your returns or even less. Youmust pay attention and definitely not expect for every tradesto produce profits every time.


  1. Keep a trade journal


By having a trading diary, you can keep a record ofyour winning positions as well as the losing ones. It is also important to also point out the characteristics that led you to that position, and be able to analyse these results.


It is necessary to be very orderly in the life of a trader, since keeping a record of trades gives the trader a really objective platform and thus be able to better understand both their options and their decisions. All of these are importantin order to improve the process of trading.


  1. Take responsibility for your movements


This habit is linked to controlling your emotions, with the difference that this time you mustn’t just control your emotions, but that you have to accept them.


You must take responsibility for each of the movements/decisions you make, and you should not blame anyone for your losses. Equally, this means no one but you gets credit for your profits.  Do notinvest in more than what you can afford to lose.


  1. It’s not just habits that make the trader, it’s the personality too


Habits are important because they form a routine for the traderand make them a person who follows certain steps that will lead him to their next gains. However, personality also plays one of the most important roles in being successful trader andit is the perfect complement for these habits to work in their entirety.


A trader must have a defined personality in order to predict a pattern of behavior that will not only help them to understand the market better, but also the way in which the same trader manages that market.


For example, there are traders who are calm and determined; in case they are not 100% sure of a trade, they may decide not to go ahead withit and thus maintain their current balance.In this way, they remain a cautious and patient trader.


At the same time, there are traders who take risks and this can lead them to have big profits,or big losses. Regardless of personality type, the important thing is that the trader knows themselves, knows what kind of habits are indicators for them and whattheir movements are in the market.




Finding at least one advantage in forex trading will help keep you in a superior position; having good tradinghabits can certainly be one of these advantages.


These habits that were explained previously serve for all types of traders, since if there is something that all successful traders have in common, is that everyone must maintain good habits in order to be successful. Organize yourself and create a routine with habits that couldlead you to success.

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How Digital Technology Has Redefined the MSME Sector



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By Adeniyi Ogunfowoke,

The MSME sector is the backbone of Nigeria’s economy. Studies by the International Finance Corporation (IFC) show that approximately 96% of Nigerian businesses are MSMEs, compared to 53% in the US and 65% in Europe. Of this number, about 99.87% of MSMEs in Nigeria are micro-enterprises. With a total number of about 17.4 million, SMEs contribute about half (48%) of the entire GDP in Nigeria.

Thanks to digital technology, it is worth noting that ecommerce platforms like Jumia have so far played a key role in boosting and accelerating MSMEs in the last 7 years. A significant number of MSMEs are riding on the Jumia platform to reach millions of customers in Nigeria and across Africa. Today, these MSMEs are raking in more revenue compared to the past.

The fact is, there is a link between technology adoption and the MSME sector growth with some stating that MSMEs who were early adopters of the technology have increased their annual revenue 15% faster than their competitors. This is what the vendors on Jumia are currently enjoying. This article explores the five leading ways in which technology will encourage growth in the MSME sector.

Creating a digital business

Thinking through and executing a digital business model requires a fundamental shift in strategy because it is completely different from offline business. In this case, you either bring out a new offering or take the existing offering to market in newer ways. This means being able to explore technologies such as the Internet of Things and Artificial Intelligence to make the customer experience seamless. The option for digital technology in MSMEs is numerous. It only requires very strong business understanding to be able to analyze what the ecosystem looks like, have a very strong understanding of the customer and their insatiable expectations to be able to devise an appropriate strategy to create the digital business that meets their needs.

Social impact

You can’t afford to operate your business as if it exists in a vacuum any longer. The rise of social media networks such as Twitter, Facebook and Instagram mean your customers are simply a click away and now users can connect without regard to the geographical obstacle, financial background, or even social status.  Indeed, in the past, there were very limited avenues for customers to raise their queries but now as a business, you are likely to incur an unfavourable rant or a bad review on Facebook. This is why as a business, you should not compromise on standards because what goes on on the Internet stays on the Internet. This means that if you earn a bad reputation, it’s going to stick with you. It is for this reason that businesses large and small worry about their digital footprint and a good number of organisations have experts who are on the lookout for potential “bad press” and are out making the rounds trying to be proactive.

Increased interest in and need for security

Businesses of all sizes need to be increasingly aware of the need for enhanced security. The rise in cyber-crime has also led to an increase in interest in protecting data, training employees and incorporating IT into every aspect of the business. At the very least, an organization needs to be committed to protecting data with backups, integrating patches and updates regularly and training all employees to spot the signs of trouble.


Digital technology has also increased the ease with which we can all stay in touch, interact and engage. Whether it’s having your coworkers and employees available via text/video chat at a moment’s notice, or being able to send targeted promotional email blasts to pre-qualified customers when they’re shopping at nearby businesses, the rise of mobile technology has blended almost seamlessly with communication software to create a web of real-time information.

Improved access to information and data

Digital Technology has made it easier than ever to research and find data without leaving the office. Enhanced access to data gives your business the ability to offer your customer service team not only a way to connect with customers but also a way to instantly access complete customer history. In addition to this, you can provide a better user experience for anyone who interacts with your brand.

Irrespective of how big or small a business enterprise is, application of digital technology offers numerous benefits including those that facilitate the smooth running of business operations. These benefits are sometimes tangible while other times; they are intangible. The bottom line is that business applications play a significant role in increasing profitability for businesses while generating the results that customers need.

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Gulder Unveils New TVC To Inspire Consumers



L-R Media Manager NB Plc. Toheeb Azeez, Portfolio Manager, National Premium Brands NB Plc. Sarah Agha, Senior Brand Manager Gulder, NB Plc., Kolawole Akintimehin, and Brand Manager Support Gulder, NB Plc. Freya Doessel At The Unveil of Gulder’s New Brand Positioning – “Own Your Journey”
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National Premium lager, Gulder, has unveiled a new TVC to inspire, engage and encourage Nigerians to continue to own their journey. Known for its sleek golden brown bottle with the iconic helmet, Gulder is set to use this TVC to continue to urge Nigerians to celebrate the small wins on their quest for success.


With the aim of extending its market penetration by redefining the brand to its consumers, the new TVC is hinged on Gulder’s redefined positioning tagged “Own Your Journey”, which was launched in January this year.


The 60 seconds TVC features a young ambitious man who is striving to become successful in his career.


He is seen discouraged by family and friends but, despite the odds, he not only pushes through and achieves great success, but he celebrates the priceless moments along the way over cold bottles of Gulder.


Speaking on the launch of the TVC, Brand Manager, Gulder, Kolawole Akintimehin said; “We believe it is a really nice time to be talking about owning and celebrating every level in our personal journeys.


“As a brand, we want to help our consumers own and celebrate all the spheres of their endeavors.


“The new TVC embodies the type of message Gulder wants to engrave in the heart of every young Nigerian, and we hope to inspire and encourage as many people as possible.”


Gulder lager beer is renowned for being a staple for the, bold and courageous Nigerian. Celebrating the daring and brave spirit of Nigerians, whilst cheering them on to their quests for success.



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