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VIACOM THRIVES ON CONNECTION TO YOUNG PEOPLE, SAYS BADA AKINTUNDE-JOHNSON

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HUNDREDS of attendees gathered at the The Podium, Lekki on Friday, June 28, 2019 for the maiden edition of CultivARTe.

In his speech, Akintunde-Johnson, shared how his brand, Viacom International Media Networks (VIMN Africa) has been able to keep the lights on for so long.

“For a company that spends $6 billion in creating content globally, operating in a tough business climate like Nigeria and not having the opportunity to make some of that money back can be frustrating,” he said.

“It can be the reason some companies want to discontinue the business in Nigeria, not us. What keeps Viacom going is that connection to young people and the potential we see to inspire them. Most of our brands actually speak to people from ages 0 – 30. For instance, Nickelodeon covers from age 0-14 while MTV Base will cover from 14-30 and we also have the international MTV brand, BET and Comedy Central.”

Akintunde-Johnson also talked about the importance of giving young talent the opportunity for expression, especially Africans.

“The opportunity to give Africans the chance to tell their stories differently from how the rest of the world understands is also what keeps us going.”

Speaking on what informs his hiring decisions, Bada said: “In business, you will be shooting yourself in the head by seeing someone who can offer solutions to your business problems and choosing someone who can’t.”

The show which was organised by Amin Ameen and Mofe Ade was hosted by Lamide Akintobi and featured some of the industry leaders in the creative space like Tokini Peterside (founder and director ArtX Lagos), Abayomi Awabokun (CEO/MD Enyo Retail), Jameelah Sharrief – Ayedun (CEO/MD Credit Registry), Fareed Arogundade (Founder, Workstation) and Lisa Folawiyo (founder and creative director JewelByLisa). Others are Nwanda Ajene (Executive Marketing Professional), Jolami Tumara (Director of Developer Programs, Andela), Ade Shokunbi (Creative Director PWDC and Architect) and Bada Akintunde-Johnson (Country Manager, Viacom International Media Networks Africa).

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