BON 71st General Assembly: John Momoh Calls For More Investment In Technology

File Photo: John Momoh

 

The Broadcasting Organisations of Nigeria has again called for more investment in technology in the broadcast industry.

The Chairman of the organisation, Mr John Momoh, who is also the Chairman of the Channels Media Group, made the appeal on Tuesday during its 71st General Assembly holding in Portharcourt, the Rivers State Capital.

At a time when the media industry is going through several rapid changes and the digital space has led to a massive disruption/ development in various sectors, Mr Momoh believes that the broadcast industry has to continue to double its efforts so as not to become relegated to the background.

He said, “The digital age which we are in has led to a massive disruption in each sector of our business, and this has brought about a gradual shift in power – away from traditional studios and broadcasters, towards new and innovative content creators.

“Content creators who are now one-step closer to their audiences, and who now wield greater power, in determining what is served up by the media’’.

“It’s a wakeup call for us to re-examine our role as broadcasters, and discern the next step forward, in the complex space of the art of today’s broadcasting”.

Momoh has been at the forefront of Nigeria’s switchover from analogue to digital broadcasting and yet again, he stated that this will improve the nation’s economy.

It is believed that the switch has the capacity to boost sales of television sets and digital video recorders, leading to positive upstream benefits in terms of increased time spent watching TV which will, in turn, boost the economy.

Momoh says it will not only expand the nation’s broadcast space but will provide the opportunity to raise the bar in content creation.

Furthermore, he stressed the fact that in several years from now, regardless of what medium is being used for communication, what will remain important is the quality of content.

He, therefore, urged broadcast industry to continue to devise means of being closer to their audience especially by investing in technology, as well as people.
“The one thing that will remain constant in the picture, is good content.

“What is changing is the way that businesses distribute content, and consumers access them, plus the nature of relationships all along the supply chain.

“The broadcast industry and the media landscape have changed irretrievably. Therefore, we must invest in technology, in people and in content development.

“The digitization process must be focused, and it’s rollout sustainable. We need to work together as a true progressive professional organisation, to drive the change we want to see. It’s either we change with the time, or we shall continue to be consigned to the slow world of analogue experience. We shouldn’t allow that to happen,” he said.

Meanwhile, the Deputy Governor of the state who represented the governor called on broadcast organisations to ensure objectivity in the 2019 elections.

As the elections draw closer, the Chairman of the Channels Media Group had also assured Nigerians that himself, as well as the station, remains apolitical in all its dealings.

It is his last address as the Chairman of the BON.

FG Launches Digital Broadcasting In Osun

FG Launches Digital Broadcasting In Osun
File photo

 

The Federal Government has launched the switchover to digital broadcasting in Osun State, South-west Nigeria.

The Minister of Information and Culture, Mr Lai Mohammed, launched the switchover on Friday at the office of the Nigeria Television Authority (NTA) in Osogbo, the state capital.

The Minister, who was in the company of the Osun State Governor, Rauf Aregbesola, among other dignitaries, described the development as a revolution.

He noted that the process of digital switchover in Nigeria which began in April 2016 has already traversed about five states with Osun as the six.

“I congratulate Osun people for this special innovation and initiative, this is an opportunity for people of the state to have unlimited access to digital television,” Mohammed said.

“The digital switchover is indeed a democratisation of information and entertainment; I commend the Integrated Television Service for their commitment and consistency.

“We are taking another bold step to build the biggest free-to-air in Africa, this is a challenge to all of us to join the unstoppable train. In this train, there is enough for everybody,” he added.

In his address, Governor Aregbesola believes the greatest achievement of the digital revolution in broadcasting is the availability of information and entertainment.

He was delighted that the switchover has broken the monopoly of access to digital television by the wealthy citizens.

“This revolution in broadcasting has made information and entertainment more available to the common people with little resources,” the governor said. “You do not need more than a room to own a television station, with different platforms and segments.”

“We can now have agriculture, culture and many other platforms with 24-7 accessibility. This DSO is an emerging innovation after the advent of coloured television,” Aregbesola added.

Notable Nigerians at the event are the Director-General of Nigeria Broadcasting Corporation, Mr Modibbo Kawu, and the Director-General of NTA, Mr Ibn Mohammed, among others.

Digital Switchover: BON Chairman Pledges Support For NBC

BON Chairman, Mr John Momoh, and NBC DG, Mr Is’haq Modibbo Kawu

 

The Broadcasting Organisations of Nigeria has pledged the support of its members for the National Broadcasting Commission towards ensuring a smooth switchover to digital broadcasting in the country.

Chairman of the Broadcasting Organisations of Nigeria and Chairman of Channels Media Group, Mr John Momoh, assured the NBC of BON’s support on Thursday at the digital switchover stakeholders’ meeting in Uyo, the Akwa Ibom State capital.

Mr Momoh, who said dynamism is the name of the game, called on broadcasters to be more proactive in the face of new challenges.

“We are witnessing an era where the broadcast industry is presenting great opportunities and at the same time facing some threats. Opportunities in the sense that the whole of broadcasting is changing from content platforms like Apple to OTT services like Netflix, Hulu, and Amazon Prime through to social media platforms like Facebook and Twitter. And so many companies are eager to get great content,” he said.

“This is where we, as broadcasters, need the support of the NBC – to ensure that it lays the groundwork for future success. The best way for us to invent the future is to put in place the best possible architecture and give the industry the freedom to thrive.”

The Director-General of the NBC, Mr Is’haq Modibbo Kawu, said the year 2018 would be better than previous years with all hands on deck. He also spoke about the prospects and targets of the digital switchover as well as efforts to ensure the impact is felt by all.

The two-day stakeholders’ meeting brings together the major players in Nigeria’s broadcast industry for discussions aimed at ensuring the country gets the digital switchover right.

Digital Switchover Will Boost Nigeria’s Economy – BON Chairman, Momoh

Digital Switchover Will Boost Nigeria’s Economy – BON Chairman, Momoh

The Chairman/CEO of Channels Media Group, Mr John Momoh (OON), believes Nigeria’s switchover from analogue to digital broadcasting will improve the nation’s economy.

Mr Momoh, who is also the Chairman of the Broadcasting Organisations of Nigeria (BON), said this on Friday at the launching of the digital switchover process in Kaduna State.

“The take-up of digital is likely to boost sales of television sets and digital video recorders — and digital TV could lead to positive upstream benefits in terms of increased time spent watching TV and it will be a boost to the nation’s economy,” he said.

READ ALSOFG Launches Digital Switchover In Kaduna

Kaduna, Plateau, and Kwara (where the switchover was also launched two days ago), are among the states selected by the government for the pilot phase of the process.

Addressing an audience in Kaduna, the Channels Media Group boss highlighted the benefits of the switchover to broadcasters and the broadcasting industry.

“We expect an increase in the capacity of broadcast transmission networks by improving spectrum efficiency; in other words, more data can be transmitted to units,” Momoh said.

“We expect the provision of better signal quality which increases robustness to interference in picture degradation, the support of HD services and interactivity, potential reduction in transmission network energy usage.”

According to the BON Chairman, digital switchover provides an opportunity for terrestrial broadcasters to address the challenges posed by paid television operators among others in a competitive environment.

On the part of consumers, he said the benefits arising from the switchover are widely recognised and enormous.

He added that they would take effect relatively quickly and would be driven primarily by increases in programming and quality.

“There are also broader benefits to society in the fact that the potential use of digital broadcasting will narrow the digital divide,” he said.

Mr Momoh, however, stressed the need for government to facilitate DTT take-up and minimise consumer destruction at analogue switch-off, saying it would provide time for regulators in the industry to address coverage and content related issues.

He also listed consumer awareness and affordability of setup boxes as some of the factors that could cause delays and recommended engagement of all stakeholders to tackle such issues.

He further asked the government to spearhead the digital switchover process and called for proper regulation on the part of the legislature.

“The digital switchover only works if it is government-led and there has to be a clear legislation regulation and overall coordination body in place.

“I am happy to note that this is happening but I must emphasise that government must, and I repeat, government must fund the DSO process; anything short of this will make us go round in circles,” said the award-winning station’s CEO.

The event was attended by the Minister of Information and Culture, Mr Lai Mohammed, and Kaduna State Governor, Mr Nasir El-Rufai, among other stakeholders in the media industry.

Digital Switchover Will Create Millions Of Jobs – Lai Mohammed

The Minister of Information and Culture, Lai Mohammed said the Digital Switchover will ‘bring out the best’ in young Nigerians as it will enrich Nigeria’s Television production, boost Nigeria’s economy, thereby creating millions of jobs.

Speaking on Friday at the Digital Switchover Launch in Kaduna state, he said the Digital Television experience will empower young Nigerians who are full of talents as it will be a platform to exhibit their talents exploring the spread of the Digital Switchover to many more states.

READ ALSO: FG Launches Digital Switchover In Kaduna

“Within next few weeks, we will be running out in many states as we seek to take the digital television experience to all the six geopolitical zones. We have so many untold stories and it is evident from demographics that we have enlarged young workforce who happens to be those with the highest propensity to work and consume content.

“We are turning our focus to the crux of the matter which is content production that will help to bolster our economy. At the end of it all, we would have created millions of jobs,’’ he said.

The Minister said it is therefore important to ensure profitability of Television Content as it an avenue to boost Nigeria’s economy.

“By content here, I refer to Television shows, sitcoms, documentaries, music videos, drama series, talent and reality shows, etc. The challenge before us is to ensure that this becomes a profitable industry for our creative channels, entrepreneurs, advertising agencies, Television channels, and digital distributors.

“The value chain of the DSO is so enormous. We are talking about a minimum of 30million households. That is about 60 million eye balls (viewers). This will provide job, not just for youths but also those in the area of manufacturing technical materials and help us ensure that scare foreign exchange is retained within the country,” he said.

According to the Minister, the Digital Switch Over will be over 200 channels and over 1000 organsied production outfit which will create content. All these he said, will require infrastructure investment in production destinations in studio, graphic, sound hubs, among others.

The Digital Switchover which was launched today in Kaduna State had in attendance dignitaries including the Chairman of the Broadcasting Organisations of Nigeria (BON) and Chairman/CEO of Channels Media Group, Mr John Momoh, and Director-General of the National Broadcasting Commission (NBC), Mr Madibbo Kawu, Kaduna State Governor Nasir El-Rufai, among others.

FG Launches Digital Switchover In Kaduna

NBC Launches Digital Switchover In Ilorin
File photo

The Federal Government on Friday launched the Digital Switchover (DSO) in Kaduna State, North-west Nigeria.

The event, which comes two days after the DSO was launched Ilorin, Kwara State, was attended by the Minister of Information and Culture, Mr Lai Mohammed, and Kaduna State Governor, Mr Nasir El-Rufai.

FG Launches Digital Switchover In Kaduna

Dignitaries at the event also include Chairman of the Broadcasting Organisations of Nigeria (BON) and Chairman/CEO of Channels Media Group, Mr John Momoh (OON), and Director-General of the National Broadcasting Commission (NBC), Mr Madibbo Kawu, among others.

READ ALSO: Digital Switchover Will Boost Nigeria’s Economy – BON Chairman, Momoh

Addressing an audience at the gathering, the Minister said the Federal Government is working towards ensuring that all states are captured in the programme as soon as possible.

He said: “Within next few weeks, we will be running out in many states as we seek to take the digital television experience to all the six geopolitical zones.”

Mr Mohammed, however, said that government is faced with the challenge of making digital broadcasting profitable for stakeholders in the media sectors.

In his address, Mr John Momoh highlighted the benefits of the digital switchover which he said would boost the nation’s economy.

He said: “Digital television could lead to positive upstream benefits in terms of increased time spent watching television and greater divine for digital content.”

On his part, Mr Kawu said the fact that the launching of the switchover held on Wednesday in Ilorin preceded that of Kaduna was a testimony of NBC’s commitment to the process.

He added that it was exactly one year after the switchover held in the Federal Capital Territory, informing the gathering that modern broadcast facilities have been installed in the state.

“Our compatriots in Kaduna can count themselves very lucky because, in this location, Pinnacle Communications Limited has installed the most modern state of the art broadcast facilities to ensure that the people in the state get access to the very best of the world of terrestrial television,” Kawu said.

John Momoh Wants FG To Review Digital Switchover Process

The Chairman of and Chief Executive Officer of Channels Media Group, Mr John Momoh, has warned that if the Federal Government does not review the digital switchover process, the deadline for the switchover will not be met.

Mr Momoh said this on Friday in Lagos at the maiden edition of the MTN F.I.R.E Series where he was the inaugural keynote speaker.

It is the first of such gathering organised by MTN for its staff members with the focus on improving its expertise.

In his motivational speech which was centred on development as a wakeup call, Mr Momoh highlighted the strides made by Channels Television and called on participants to help move the country to the next phase.

He said, “We are the first television station to integrate Twitter into our broadcast workflow. We are the first Nigerian station to be recognised as the convergence leader in news media by the West African Know-How Intelligence Unit and we are the first African media organisation to be honoured by YouTube as the Best Broadcaster in sub-Saharan Africa.

“What do we do now? Wouldn’t it be nice for us to strive to change this country as we contribute our quota to our organisations to all see how we can help our country to grow, to move to the next phase?

“The Channels story is but one voice; here though a powerful voice. Let’s pump up the volume; that is very important. Nigeria needs leaders like you. You should endeavour to act as an inspiration to society. You can do it. If we can do it in Channels, individually, you can do it.”

His address elicited questions with some on the act activation of the digitisation process.

As the Chairman of the Broadcasting Organisations of Nigeria, he had a response, which included the need to re-calibrate the process.

Mr Momoh said, “First of all, the whole structures that have been put in place are wrong. You want somebody to invest in a playout facility, to set up a platform which will be the signal distributor, and then you put two structures in between him and the consumers.

“It’s more like saying, ‘MTN, come, we will give you a license to operate the telephony and mobile licenses, but I am going to put two companies between MTN and the consumer to collect all the money. It’s not going to work and we won’t meet any deadline. If the government does not go back to re-calibrate and re-orientate, then we will continue to go round in circles.”

FG Plans Audience Measurement Conference To Enhance Broadcast Industry Growth

The Federal Government is set to organize an Audience Measurement Conference to provide broadcast industry stakeholders the opportunity to contribute to efforts to establish a scientific Audience Measurement System for radio television broadcasting in the country.

The Minister of Information and Culture, Alhaji Lai Mohammed, disclosed this in Lagos on Tuesday at the Broadcasting Organisation of Nigeria (BON) 3rd International Summit on Digital Broadcasting in Nigeria, saying the event will hold 3rd Oct. 2017.

“It is imperative that we urgently put in place an industry framework that will ensure that Content Producers receive their just due for the value of the Content they create, as well as provide objective guarantees to the Advertising community on their Return-On-Investment on media placements. This will then have the overall effect of guaranteeing greater spending by the Advertisers, who are all seeking to grow their market share.

“This industry framework can only happen if the Ministry of Information and Culture, which fortunately supervises both the Broadcasting and Advertising industries, serves as a catalyst for putting in place a robust Audience Measurement System that is in line with global standards and supports the realization of the immense potential that the Nigerian Creative and Entertainment industry holds,” he said.

Alhaji Mohammed further stated that for the Digital Switch Over from analogue to digital television to be sustainable for Signal Distributors, Channel owners, TV Content Producers and Advertisers, the scientific Audience Measurement System is critical to articulate the value of the content to Consumers, as well as the value of the Audience to Advertisers, particularly in the Television sector.

He said lack of a scientific Audience Measurement System has resulted in under-investment in the sector, which is necessary to foster the growth of the industry, as the Advertising community continues to rely on subjective factors when making decisions on the Content they want, as opposed to how many viewers the Content truly attracts.

The Minister stated that as a consequence, television platforms are subjected to renting out space on their Channels to sustain their businesses and Content Producers have become increasingly over-reliant on sponsorship which, unfortunately, skews the authenticity of their creative output in favor of a few decision makers and not the millions of TV viewers.

“Further, the value of Nigeria’s Broadcasting Advertising Market is not proportionate with its population when compared to the Top 3 Markets in the Sub-Saharan Africa region. Despite having a population three times more than South Africa, Nigeria’s Television Advertising Revenue in 2016, at US$309m, was behind that of South Africa, at US$1,301m.

“By 2020, the gap between South Africa and Nigeria is projected to marginally decline to 72%. Similarly, in the Radio sector, the value of Nigeria’s 2016 Advertising Revenue of US$81m was behind its peers, South Africa and Kenya, both at US$343m. Kenya is projected to overtake South Africa in 2017 as the leading Radio Advertising market,” he said.

Mr Mohammed stressed that in both South Africa and Kenya, the value and growth rate of the Broadcasting Advertising Revenue is largely influenced by the availability of a scientific Audience Measurement System that provides confidence to Advertisers in measuring their Return-On-Investment.

He noted that bringing Nigerian TV advertisement market into line with benchmarks that is two to three times the current size could result in additional $200-$400m of revenue to the industry, based on current comparisons with other African countries.

The Minister said the Federal Government had already taken a critical long-term decision to support the Nigeria Creative and Entertainment Industry by ensuring and funding the inclusion of a middle-ware that is capable of scientific Audience Measurement on Set-Top Boxes, hence the need to develop the framework.

“The existing model will never enable the Nigeria’s Creative and Entertainment Industry to reach its full potential. It stunts the quality of the Content that can be created and it also limits the capacity of Television platforms to invest in dynamic offerings that Consumers will be attracted to,” he noted

Digital Switchover: Broadcast Media Executives Meet In Lagos

NBC Launches Digital Switchover In Ilorin

Nigerian Broadcast Media Executives converged on Lagos today, to discuss the challenges and opportunities faced by the industry in the Digital Switchover.

The meeting comes ahead of the Broadcasting Organisations of Nigeria’s international summit on digital broadcasting in Nigeria scheduled for Tuesday next week in Lagos.

BON’s Zonal Chairman in charge of the South West region, Mrs Funke Moore addressed the gathering.

She said the upcoming summit will also emphasise media content security.

BON Demands Timeline From NBC On Digital Switchover

The Broadcasting Organisations of Nigeria (BON) has demanded a timeline from the National Broadcasting Commission (NBC) on digital switch-over in the country.

The organisation made the call during its 67th General Assembly and 16th Annual General Meeting which took place in Owerri, Imo State.

The meeting took place at the Imo Trade and Investment Centre Owerri, where the Chairman of the BON and Chairman Channels Media Group, Mr John Momoh said it is important that the NBC and Digiteam hit the reset button on the planned digital switch over of the broadcast industry.

Read Also: BON Holds 67th General Assembly In Owerri

Mr Momoh, explained that the licensing of the third parties like CCNL, STB manufacturers and Inview Technology has created a clog in the actualisation of the digital switch over.

He added that it is Illogical to have a middleman between a content producer and the signal distributor and therefore, urged the NBC to ensure that all technical and coordination activities of the existing DTT pay source are resolved otherwise the digital switch over will not be actualised.

He also stressed that there’s need to appeal to the Federal Government to show more interest in helping the media industry develop business and financing models that are sufficient in harnessing the massive value chain economy of the BON.

Momoh, however, expressed confidence that the set agenda for his administration has made tremendous and significant progress over the last seven months.

Among those also present were the Director General of Imo broadcasting Corporation, Mr Ralph Afoaku and the Minister of Information, Lai Mohammed who was represented by the General Manager of NTA Owerri, Gladys Igboanugo.

The Minister on his part, commended the BON for their contribution in developing the broadcast industry and also called for its support in the development of the country under the President Buhari-led government.

NBC Launches Digital Switchover In Ilorin

NBC Launches Digital Switchover In IlorinResidents of Ilorin can now enjoy advanced broadcast viewing following the launch of the digital switchover by the National Broadcasting Commission (NBC).

The Director-General of NBC, Ishaq Modibbo- Kawu, told reporters in Kwara State that the launch was in line with the commission’s policy to ensure households migrate from analogue to digital.

“Now we are going to six states in each of the geo-political zones – Kwara in the North-Central, Osun in the South-West, Gombe in the North-East, Kaduna in the North-West, Enugu in the South-East and Delta in the South-South.

“We are going to have to do it in phases because digital switchover is a major challenge in terms of technology, in terms of logistics and the finance,” he said.

Mr Modibbo- Kawu asked Nigerians to be patient with the NBC, explaining that the switchover was being done in phases due to the cost of procuring the equipment needed.

“The 650,000 boxes that we procured for the first phase cost us $26m, that’s a huge amount of money, considering that you are having about 35m television homes in Nigeria with each box [costing] about $45 per box.

“It’s a very expensive process and that’s why we are doing it in the phased manner and we are giving a bouquet of 30 programmes which will continue to expand as more and more producers of television content come on stream,” he added.

FG Says Digital Switchover Deadline Is Achievable

Lai Mohammed, Digital Switchover, John MomohThe Federal Government has asked Nigerians not to rule out the possibility of achieving the digital broadcast switchover deadline of June 2017 set by the International Telecommunications Union.

The Minister of Information and Culture, Mr Lai Mohammed, made the call on Thursday at a public hearing of the House of Representatives Ad-hoc Committee set up to investigate the process of the planned digital switchover in Nigeria.

He stressed the need to review the business model inherited from the previous administration before the set deadline.

“We know it’s very ambitious but if you aim for the sky, you might at least get the ceiling.

“We don’t want to say June 2017 is unachievable, we’ll relax. But if we are able to roll out another six by May, then we know where we are,” the minister said.

The Chairman of the House Ad-hoc Committee, Representative Sunday Katung, also emphasised the importance of the digital switchover.

Deadline Implication

However, the Chairman of the Broadcasting Organisations of Nigeria (BON) and CEO, Channels Media Group, Mr John Momoh, stressed the need to place the interest of stakeholders and that of the country first.

Mr Momoh advised that Nigeria should work towards ensuring that a good switchover transition was achieved rather than emphasising deadlines.

“Again, I say that we shouldn’t be looking at deadlines. I think we should just work towards making sure that we have a very good switchover.

“When we set a deadline, we put ourselves under pressure.

“The ministry is working very well with the border states to make sure that there is no confusion in terms of interference.

“We should just be focused and see how can we transit to digital, rather than emphasise deadlines.

“Deadlines will put us in trouble,” the BON Chairman warned.

Other issues discussed at the gathering include funding and the need to have a better business model backed by a good legal framework to accommodate the transition process.