In major investments, Globacom moves to shape Africa’s digital fortune, future

Musikiliu Mojeed, Chief Operating Officer, Premium Times; Bisi Koleoshe, Deputy Chief Operating Officer (Technical), Globacom; Bayo Onanuga, and Managing Director, News Agency of Nigeria, at the presentation of Globacom’s New Business Direction in Lagos on Friday.
Musikiliu Mojeed, Chief Operating Officer, Premium Times; Bisi Koleoshe, Deputy Chief Operating Officer (Technical), Globacom; Bayo Onanuga, and Managing Director, News Agency of Nigeria, at the presentation of Globacom’s New Business Direction in Lagos on Friday.

Globacom, one of Africa’s fastest growing telecommunications companies, on Friday, February 1, presented its new business direction to Nigeria’s media executives. At the event held at the Grand Ballroom of the Eko Hotel in Lagos, the firm unveiled its plans to set Africa’s biggest economy on a remarkably new digital revolution.

At the event, officials of the telecom firm took turns to explain the several ‘next generation platforms’ the company would unleash on the sector this year. One executive said Globacom would expand its extensive use of Artificial Intelligence (AI) to deepen customer experience this year.

The company said the AI platform will engage customers directly and assist them to get information on pressing issues. It will also support customers to choose the most convenient data and talk plan in both the prepaid and postpaid categories, resolve general and specific issues such as balance enquiry/Value Added Service (VAS) and respond to customer enquiries 24/7 without any human interface.

Other officials of the company gave presentations on other initiatives being launched by the telco to engage customers and provide the best environment for subscribers.

The journey

Fifteen years ago, Globacom was born with a vision to make telephony and allied services accessible and affordable to every African across all levels of society. Right from inception, the Glo brand espoused certain fundamental values, hinged on the belief that the customer deserves the best.

At the Lagos event, the company renewed its promise never to relent in investing in the best, cutting edge, up-to-the-minute technology and methods.

The media executives in attendance were reminded of the company’s core values, and its numerous firsts in the industry. They were then shown the company’s new television commercials, new products to be launched this year, and other forward-looking initiatives.

To make customers enjoy the best value for money, the company says it believes that it must at all times give cogent reasons for its existing customers to stay with the network and for prospects to join it through consistent quality that is second to none and pricing that does not exploit or unduly stretch them.

In his remark at the event, Bisi Koleoso, deputy chief operating Officer, Technical, said: “We have invested massively in new technologies to introduce these products which we believe will redefine business, social and personal pursuits”.

On Customer Empowerment, Globacom says it anticipates the future with its investment in relevant technology and design of game-changing products and services that provide best value to customers now and in future.

The company says its mandate remains the building of Africa’s biggest and best telecommunications network and, particularly, to stand tall with the rest of the world.

‘Glo With Pride’

The company recalled its role in revolutionising telephony in Nigeria by becoming the first network to launch on the per second billing platform and roll out world class services covering thousands of cities, towns and villages in a few months of operations. This opened up the telecom category to every citizen irrespective of ethnic nationality, creed or income, enabling them to be one with the rest of the world.

Not relenting, the company launched a slew of futuristic products and services such as being the first to offer 2.5 G when others were on 2G, MMS, international SMS connectivity to over 804 networks in 174 countries, BlackBerry solutions, international prepaid roaming, voice SMS, personal ringback tunes, and Magicplus––a comprehensive bouquet of SIM based information services.

However, to keep pace with changing times as they evolved, the Globacom brand too did evolve. By recognizing changing demographics that skewed towards the youth, the company needed to connect with the “now” person in businesses and enterprise, in social relationships and other facets of their lives. Hence, Glo alerted existing and potential subscribers to the launch of its over 10,000 kilometre Glo 1 submarine cable which provides tons of terabytes of data per second to West Africa. This is joined to its nation-wide fibre optic backbone which has greatly enhanced the network’s power and efficiency.

Glo Unlimited

To further bring its customers on a par with the rest of the world, Glo launched the first 4G Network, offering nationwide coverage, fastest speeds and best prices. This pole position in data earned Glo the distinction of being called “GRANDMASTERS OF DATA” and it’s no surprise that Glo is now rated the 4th Most Admired African Brand. Similarly, subscribers’ communication requirements are getting more global, more integrated and more sophisticated while data has become the new lifeblood––with technology getting smarter!

Glo has now embarked on making investments in the digital economy to enhance industrial as well as institutional productivity paving the way for the fourth industrial revolution in the country. It is equally boosting its data capacity significantly to bridge the digital divide in the country and to bring in financial inclusion; spur productivity in key sectors like health, transport, energy and manufacturing; and enhance customer experience on the network.

The TVC ‘Vibe’

Similarly, the brand got people talking with star-studded commercials underscoring the primacy of talk which is a distinctive attribute of human beings. It features iconic artistes like King Sunny Ade, Wizkid, Davido, Phyno, Yemi Alade, Ego Ogbaru, Bez Idakula, Sani Danja, Tekno and Van Vicker. The song is already very popular and is expected to rise in fame because of its sing-along attribute and coterie of stars.

The TVC underscores the permanence of talk despite the popularity of data. It also emphasizes that Glo services are available everywhere, all over the world, connecting people “from Accra to Kaduna, Lagos to LA, from retail service outlets such as barber shops to boli sellers in the North, East, West and South of the globe.”

Oxygen is undoubtedly life’s most essential ingredient. Without it, life is impossible. Therefore, by saying Data is Life, the TVC highlights the importance of Glo data to life and how it offers solutions to life’s challenges. It portrays Glo as empathetic to the needs of subscribers by providing cutting-edge solutions to whatever problems they are grappling with.

The first person to heave a sigh of relief is a Lady trying to send a client’s presentation without success until she gets relief from a Glo mifi offered by a male friend who shares his data with her. The second scenario showing a farmer who is wondering how to sell the heap of yams he had just harvested and the third scene showing a girl who borrows data to complete her game and wins it, all reflect this.

The Anthony Joshua Magic

At the event, the company also unveiled the Heavyweight Champion, Anthony Joshua’s endorsement details. Since his emergence on the world boxing scene, Heavyweight Champion, Anthony Oluwafemi Olaseni Joshua, has attracted a lot of scrutiny from Nigerians trying to establish if he had any attachment to his roots, Nigeria. Such lingering doubts have been laid to rest with the new TVC unveiled by Globacom recently.

In the commercial, Joshua gave a ringing announcement of his status as a Nigerian.

The bricklayer-turned boxing Champion in the commercial revealed the parallels between him and Glo. Some of these include the never-say-die, can-do spirit of Globacom which undergirds and constitutes the philosophy of the telecommunications giant is shared by the Champ who says in the TVC, “You need strength?” Yeah, that comes from the hard knocks that life throws at us. And we are Nigerians, we know all about that”. He also went on to compare life’s challenges with boxing, saying, “it’s like when we are up against the rope. You don’t stay down, you’ve got to fight. You have to dig deep to be a world champion”. He promptly endorsed the brand, Glo.

‘Connecting People with Opportunities’

Globacom has also designed a vast number of initiatives connecting people with various opportunities around them. Glo HealthCare help Nigerians connect with over 300 specialised doctors across the globe; Glo Entertainment Portal remains a single point of access for all digital content through Glo Café which supplies premium content of top international labels; while GLO TITI is an Artificial Intelligence Service that completely changes customer experience by engaging customers directly and assisting them to get information about data plans, prepaid plans and Value Added Service (VAS).

GLO MOBILE MONEY is an agent network which will hasten the drive towards a cash-light Nigerian society by enabling financial transactions on the mobile phone and extending financial inclusion to over 60 million unbanked people in the country. Also, GLO DRIVE addresses problems subscribers face with storing data by offering limitless storage capacity in the cloud.

Consolidating Strengths; Upgrading Networks

Globacom is also upgrading the capacity of existing microwave links, converting TDM links to IP for 2G and 3G, and is deploying high capacity microwave back up links to increase data back haul capacity and protect traffic against fibre cut.

In 2019, Globacom, owned by Mike Adenuga, who is rated by Forbes as world’s 2nd richest black man, is planning for a bigger and better future.

“We are using a scientific and methodical way of rolling out new sites based on feedback from regions on where the sites are needed to address customer complaints”, Sanjib Roy, an official, stated.

“We are also planning to rollout LTE in 1800 band this year in major cities to increase our 4G LTE penetration and allow higher handset adoption in order to enable the masses to harness the future.

“New enterprise products that will help SMEs and businesses in rural areas to grow in a digital environment are also in the works. New sites will also be built in rural areas to bridge the digital divide between cities and villages”.

Mr Koleoso on his part said Globacom was committed to ensuring that Nigerians were not left behind in the march towards a digitalised world. “Having ended 2018 on a very high note, retaining our position as the second largest operator with a remarkable 45.3 million subscriber base, we have resolved to further enrich customer experience on our network with these new offerings,” he said.

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