Strategists In Nigerian Agencies To Smile As Bola Akingbade Marketing Excellence Initiative Endows New Award Category For LAIF

L- R Steve Babaeko, AAAN President; Mrs Akingbade; Mr Bola Akingbade and Bayo Adekanmbi, Coordinator, BAMEI at the “Cheque” Presentation Ceremony

Are you a strategist in any agency in Nigeria, and below 25 years of age? Then this report should give you a reason to smile and prepare.  Bola Akingbade Marketing Excellence Initiative (BAMEI), a platform created to promote the marketing principles of celebrated marketing guru,  Bola Akingbade, has decided to specially recognize the Best Under -25 strategist in Advertising.

Tagged Bola Akingbade Award for Best Strategist in Advertising, it would be a new category of the Lagos Advertising and Ideas Festival (LAIF) Awards from 2023.

 Speaking on this when Industry leaders, and associates gathered recently at Wheatbaker Hotel Ikoyi, Lagos to celebrate the respected marketing icon Bola Akingbade who turned 70 recently, Bayo Adekanmbi, Principal Coordinator of the Initiative revealed that the endowment would be for an initial period of 10 years. He also stressed that each year, the winner would go home with a huge amount of money that the Advertising Agencies Association of Nigeria (AAAN) would announce later.  This probably would be the first category of the LAIF Award with prize money.

Speaking at the event before receiving the endowment cheque, The President of the Association of Advertising Agencies of Nigeria (AAAN) Steve Babaeko, praised Baba Akingbade who was celebrating his 70th Birthday, his strong marketing acumen, his untainted leadership values, and high ethics.  He also pointed out that the new initiative reveals that Akingbade is not just a leader; but also a passionate teacher, a visionary, and a beacon of wisdom whose unwavering dedication to excellence would motivate young strategists in the advertising industry to achieve new heights.

 Bayo Adekanmbi restated earlier that the initiative is all about celebrating marketing practice, education, and research, and will have three pillars in all as outlined as follows:

-Academic Awards- Celebrating best students in marketing, brand management, and marketing communications across Nigerian universities, institutions, and professional bodies in Nigeria.

-Supporting postgraduate students of marketing, particularly those who want to study the works of Mr. Bola Akingbade. This will particularly start with the University of Lagos with some millions set aside for any Ph.D. or master’s student who is ready to research and structure all the works of Bola Akigbade.

-The third pillar is thought leadership- Organising platforms where innovation in marketing is celebrated.

 The first Beneficiaries of the initiative include Orange Academy and LAIF Awards of the Association of Advertising Agencies of Nigeria (AAAN).

For the schools, discussions have been concluded with Ahmadu Bello University and the University of Nigeria, Nsukka so cheques covering the endowment for ten years were presented to the two schools. According to Adekanmbi, discussions are still ongoing at Obafemi Awolowo University, Ile-Ife, and The University of Lagos.

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