We Will Drive Performance, Professionalism And Awareness Says New AAAN President As Babaeko, Alumona Outline Plans

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Some of the elected members of AAAN Executives taking oath of office.
Some of the elected members of AAAN Executives taking oath of office.

Following his election as the President of the Association of Advertising Agencies of Nigeria, AAAN, at the 45th Annual General Meeting/Congress of the association yesterday in Abeokuta, Managing Director of DDB Lagos, Ikechi Odigbo has outlined a three pronged vision of driving performance, professionalism and awareness for the body.

Speaking exclusively to Brand Communicator’s Jeremiah Agada after the election, Ikechi who was elected unopposed said he will work assiduously with the newly constituted Executive members of the association to address the teething challenges facing the association.

“We will focus on addressing the issue of capacity building and driving people professional development. Consequently, we will work towards the operational launch of the advertising academy as a primary goal of driving people-development within our industry. We will also focus on providing thought-leadership within the creative industry.”

While noting the common challenge of eroding margins and dwindling financial performance amongst member agencies within the association, Ikechi said they will take the issue head-on. “We will be engaging with our clients’ partner association, ADVAN to be able to work out a framework to ensure equitable terms of doing business for our member agencies even as they engage our client.”

Ikechi Odigbo, AAAN President.
Ikechi Odigbo, AAAN President.

On creating awareness beyond what the association is known for, Ikechi called on the media to support AAAN in its drive to consistently be on the front burner at the national front as it relates to the economic and social activities within the country.

Steve Babaeko who won in the only contested position at the election, emerging Vice President, polling 53 votes out of possible 55 to defeat his rival, the Managing Director of Culture Communications, Yomi Benson, had this to say on the vision for the association: “What is important for us is to get the respect of this association back. Right now, I don’t think we are prominent enough at the national front because, if it is true that the government is still giving out jobs that can be effectively executed here in Nigeria outside, then, we urgently need to do something about that. That action shows disrespect for the advertising industry in Nigeria.

“These are the kind of stuff we want to stand up and fight. Other countries will want to protect the local industry by supporting them while ours is purportedly taking scarce foreign exchange to some seedy portfolio agency somewhere in Bahrain.”

Steve Babaeko, ice President, AAAN.
Vice President, AAAN.

While Corroborating Babaeko, the Association’s new Publicity Secretary, Jenkins Alumona who is the CEO of Strategic Outcomes adds, “AAAN has always been in the forefront of creative thinking in the country but I think in the past, we have not been ventilating this position as strongly as we should. My function as the publicity secretary of the AAAN will be to make people understand what we as an association do for our membership and the position we hold in the country’s polity, what we stand for and what we want for our members and for Nigeria.”

Jenkins Alumona, Publicity Secretary, AAAN.
Jenkins Alumona, Publicity Secretary, AAAN.

Babaeko also added that the association will focus on integrating more young people into AAAN and work collaboratively with other stakeholders in the IMC industry like ADVAN, MIPAN, EXMAN, etc, to achiebve common goals.

Having served the association in various positions in the past with the last being in the capacity of Vice President and Publicity Secretary respectively, it is hoped that the duo of Ikechi Odigbo and Steve Babaeko, and the entire leadership of the AAAN will propel the association to greater heights.

Other members of the new AAAN executive include Wale Akintunde, Treasurer and Managing Director of DKK, Tope Jemerigbe, Assistant Public Relations Officer. The Former President of the association, Kayode Oluwasona automatically returned as an Ex-Officio while VerdantZeal boss, Dr. Tunji Olugbodi; Insight Publicis MD, Feyi Olubodun, Onuorah Molokwu, Odun Fadoju, Biodun Adefila and Victor Otabor were elected Ex-Officios.

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