MTN and CCHUB co-hosted Stakeholders in the Nigerian entertainment industry to identify various problems inhibiting growth and to suggest possible ways by which radical technological revolution of the industry can make the industry compete with its counterparts worldwide.

Stakeholders present that took part in the session are Iranian Tannaz Bahnam, founder of Lost In Lagos, a website that offers directions to visitors in lagos; Omoyemi Akerele, lawyer-turned-fashion-consultant and founder of Fashion House organisation; Ayeni Adekunle public relations specialist and publisher
of Nigeria Entertainment Today; and Singer, songwriter and rapper Olanrewaju Fasasi better known as Sound Sultan.They all shared individual experiences, how the problems have affected them and gave suggestions at the MTN NextApp idea session held on Wednesday 21, Aug. 2013 at the Co-Creation Hub (CCHub) Sabo Yaba, Lagos. They were unanimous in their belief innovative technology is the future of the industry.

For Tannaz, who came to Nigeria five years ago on a National Geographic project but stayed back thereafter, the type of app that would help people navigate the vast city of Lagos, inform on restaurants and hotels, and compare services among peers will remarkably boost the lifestyle business.
“When I first came into Nigeria, the first challenge I encountered was finding my way around Lagos,” she said. “So when I eventually got it right, I wanted other people to benefit. That was why I started lostinlagos.com. I would like to see apps in that line in the MTN NextApp competition.”

On the other hand, the motivation for Akerele is the desire to positively influence the life of Nigerians. “I would like to see an app that gives one the real shopping experience with just a push of buttons on the smartphone,” she said.
“Apart from what is being offered by existing e-commerce sites that only dump all the products online, I like to see an app that classifies products based on standard criteria like designers, colour and fabric type, as well as niche online platforms that would ease the purchase of local fabrics.”

Ayeni and Sound Sultan expressed similar ideas but added that curbing piracy remains the biggest challenge in the industry. “We are at the mercy of Alaba,” Sound Sultan complained. “Why would you have to sweat cooking up an album then eventually beg Alaba people to pirate it in the name of marketing for you?
“Eventually a complete album with about 20 songs that took about two years to make would be sold for N40, less than the price of an original empty CD (N200).”

Ayeni suggested that a virtual structure created online to mimic physical entertainment product markets such as Alaba and Idumota in Lagos and Upper Iweka in Owerri could solve the problem. “Also, when laws that protect and regulate intellectual property distribution are made and enforced, distribution of songs, books and video could yield proper profit when channeled through the virtual structure,” he added.

CCHub Partner, Femi Alonge believes that if the stake holders get a clear idea of whatever they want, they could easily collaborate with folks at the hub to bring such ideas to life. He encouraged everyone not to keep their ideas to themselves because doing so would not move the nation forward.

Manager, MTN Value added Service Propositions and Promotions, Marketing and Strategy
Divisions, Omotayo George encouraged all developers inspired to enter
the NextApp contest to do so, creating their apps on platforms that
would be accessible to most people and on multiple platforms if need
be.