The Media Online’s weekly round up of people, account and business moves in media.
This week’s BIG move: Lebashe enters the media ‘Arena’, Alec Hogg on board as director after strategic equity partnership deal
The Lebashe Investment Group has not only announced the launch of its new media entity, Arena Holdings (Pty) Ltd, but also inked a strategic equity partnership with Alec Hogg’s BizNews. Hogg now has a place on the entity’s new board.
Arena Holdings houses all its content, broadcasting, and media assets, following the successful conclusion of a R1.05 billion transaction with Tiso Blackstar announced in June this year.
“Biznews took another big step yesterday when we formalised a new strategic equity partnership with Lebashe Investments, whose team I’ve been working closely with over the past few months,” Hogg said in a note on BizNews on Thursday morning.
“Gaining Arena as a big brother opens an exciting new chapter for Biznews, and will help us to serve our community better. Thank you for your support. And be assured we’ll keep doing everything possible to reciprocate,” he said.
Lebashe received the nod from the Competition Tribunal of South African and Tiso Blackstar Group SE shareholders in the United Kingdom last month, which paved way for a new era of this media group headquartered in Parktown, Johannesburg.
“We are in it for the long haul,” said Lebashe chairman, Tshepo Mahloele. “We want this new entity to focus solely on protecting and building our current media assets in South Africa, grow the media business across the African continent and, to help our businesses to effectively navigate industry changes that are brought to bear by digital disruption and other market forces.”
The business will continue under the leadership of Andy Gill and his deputy, Moshoeshoe Monare.
Ogilvy COO promoted to top global role
Ogilvy South Africa’s COO, Joanna Oosthuizen, has been promoted to director of public relations and influence for Ogilvy’s Europe, Middle East and Africa (EMEA) region.
Oosthuizen is an Ogilvy veteran, having been with the company for 15 years. She has been responsible for building Ogilvy’s PR & Influence practice, growing it from 16 employees into an operation of more than 100 across three offices.
“Joanna has spearheaded some of our most successful work and built some of our most valuable client relationships. She is also an inspirational leader, who mentored many of our greatest achievers,” said Ogilvy South Africa CEO, Alistair Mokoena. “We are confident that she will achieve great success in this new role. We congratulate her on this exciting and well-deserved elevation.”
In her new role, Oosthuizen will be based in London, but will remain active within Ogilvy South Africa.
Grey Advertising Africa announces Louise Johnston as managing director
Grey Advertising Africa has announced the appointment of seasoned advertising campaigner, Louise Johnston as managing director of its South African operations.
Johnston has been in the advertising industry 26 years ago and has held a number of positions in the sector, beginning her career in account management before working her way up the ranks into agency management.
“I am delighted to join the Grey team. I believe that Grey is one of the few agencies on a rapid growth trajectory having recently won significant new business off the back of a creative revival under the stewardship of chief creative officer, Fran Luckin,” said Johnston. “I admire the type of work the agency is doing such as the recent award-winning Gillette Gogo Nozizwe campaign which connects with people in very deep and significant ways.”
M&C Saatchi Group welcomes Karen Naidoo as partner, talent
M&C Saatchi Group South Africa has appointed respected industry leader Karen Naidoo as their partner, talent.
Naidoo brings exceptional experience in human resources to the rapidly growing multiple award-winning creative agency. She has run her own successful consultancy in addition to extensive experience at blue-chip companies such as British American Tobacco.
“We’re delighted to have someone of Karen’s calibre join us to head Talent for our Group of companies,” said regional co-founder and chief executive, Mike Abel.
Naidoo said she was excited about joining the M&C Saatchi Group. “Working for a diversified communications Group will be a career first for me. I admire the M&C Saatchi Group’s growth and achievements. To work with such exceptionally talented and creative people will without doubt be a privilege,” she said.
Mmoni Seapolelo acting spokesperson for SABC
Mmoni Seapolelo is acting spokesperson with immediate effect, where she will remain until 31 December 2019. This follows the end of the acting period for Vuyo Mthembu , which ended on 1 November. The SABC thanked Mthembu for her hard work and dedication during this period.
Fintech specialist, e4, appoints new CEO
Fintech software specialist, e4, has announced the appointment of Grant Phillips as the chief executive fficer of the Group. Having previously run large multinational technology businesses, Phillips has been working with e4 and its shareholders for the past 18 months and formally joins the company’s executive management team as well as the Board of Directors as of 1 November 2019.
New agency group for SA’s advertising & marketing communication industry – Nahana Communications Group
The recently launched Nahana Communications Group will bring together digital specialist Hellocomputer; media agencies The MediaShop and Meta Media; content creator Fuelcontent; public relations consultancy Weber Shandwick and full-service agencies McCann1886, HelloFCB+ and FCB Joburg as well as a socio-economic development arm, Nahana Foundation,
Brett Morris is now the group CEO of the Nahana Communications Group.
“‘Nahana’ means to ‘think’ or ‘imagine’ in Sesotho and conveys the rationale for the Group’s composition, he said. “As a group, we believe that – using the power of creative thinking and imagination – we are able to help our people and our clients achieve extraordinary things and more than they ever thought possible.”
Morris said Nahana comprised numerous specialist agencies with their own independent structures, cultures and management teams, and a desire to work together where synergy exists.
Each was driven to help the modern marketer navigate today’s overwhelming choice of marketing and technology opportunities, he said. By bringing together specialists who develop creative solutions to business problems and seamlessly integrate these across channels and platforms, Nahana helps them navigate this complexity.
Morris added that the Group had a strong transformation ambition at its core spanning leadership, inclusivity and belonging.
Avatar wins Unilever Brands
Unilever has appointed Avatar agency to work on their Aromat and Knorrox food brands in South Africa.
“We were impressed by Avatar’s insights into the local market while managing the balance with being able to manage global brands,” said Vuyo Henda, marketing manager of the Unilever foods division, Africa. “We are looking forward to the future with the Avatar team on these brands.”
Veli Ngubane, founding partner and group MD commented: “We are honoured to be given the opportunity to work on such iconic Unilever brands that most of us grew up with and we look forward to producing market relevant work that connects with the consumer, growing the brands market share and also us working with more Unilever brands in the future.”
Avatar is tasked with growing and using innovative digitally led ideas to further entrench these loved brands in the hearts and minds of South Africans from all walks of life.
Unilever’s Aromat and Knorrox brands are the second Durban based client wins for Avatar, following its Chicken Express win in October.
Isolezwe notes record growth for digitally delivered vernacular news
Isolezwe, the country’s third-largest daily newspaper by circulation, is maintaining its trendsetter status in the vernacular market. The Zulu publication set a record and raised the bar in the digital publishing space in September, by reaching 547 000 users on its website and four million page views.
This feat is a first for a Zulu newspaper in the country. Crucially, it dispels the myth that readers who prefer to consume their news in vernacular can’t access them online. The Isolezwe website was launched as a standalone in 2017, after the newspaper had showed potential while under parent website iol.co.za.
Slindile Khanyile, the editor of Isolezwe, thanked readers for their loyalty. “For the longest time, there was this untested and patronising belief that our readers did not want to consume news online, and that they did not grasp how online worked. However, these website figures prove otherwise. Our readers may be largely low-income earners who prefer news in their mother tongue, but they are just as thirsty for knowledge and information, and they yearn to improve their lives. There is so much more we still need to do using technology to improve people’s lives,” she said.
BCW Africa Celebrates 30 Years of Business in Africa
BCW (Burson Cohn & Wolfe is celebrating 30 years in Africa. The company’s roots date back to October 1989.For 30 years Robyn de Villiers, Chair and CEO of BCW Africa, and her team have been on an African journey, building an award-winning communications network, consulting to some of the world’s most admired brands and contributing to the growth of the communications industry across the continent.
“I am immensely proud of our achieving this significant milestone,” said De Villiers. “It has been a successful and enormously rewarding journey made possible because of the solid partnerships we’ve formed with our colleagues across Africa, business partners, clients, suppliers, staff and friends. We couldn’t have achieved this milestone without their unwavering support.”
For the diary
WarnerMedia to join AfricaCom in Cape Town
WarnerMedia is taking part in this year’s AfricaCom. The event takes place at the Cape Town International Convention Centre from 12 – 14 November. WarnerMedia is well known for talented storytelling and journalism to global audiences through its consumer brands such as HBO, Warner Bros., TNT, CNN, DC Entertainment, Cartoon Network, Boomerang, Adult Swim and others.
Topic: Survival of the Fittest. Presenter: Guillaume Coffin, Vice President and Head of Commercial and Business Development WarnerMedia Entertainment Networks France, Africa and Israel
Topic: Global Going Local – Making the Most from Content. Presenter: Julien Borde, Director of Channels for France, French-speaking territories, Africa and Israel
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