‘Why outdoor practitioners should take data seriously’

Chijide-President-OAAN-The President of the West African Outdoor Advertising Association, Mr. Charles Chijide has said that members of the association must work together to make available data that would help drive the sector as it is a critical element because outdoor advertising business can only thrive when there is data to back up operations.

Chijide further said that practitioners in the region need to be more proactive and determined to strive to uplift this profession. He also urged members of the association to use the meeting to provide innovative ideas and in-puts on the road map to further the height and make the profession an enviable and profitable venture in the region and globally.

Speaking in Lagos last week at the Executive Meeting of the West African Outdoor Advertising Association, he implored members of the association to remain resolute in the quest to forge a common front in exploring the frontiers of growth and development adding that they should spare no efforts in breaking barriers to harness opportunities in the region through active co-operation, competition and collaboration.

The immediate past president of the Outdoor Advertising Agency of Nigeria (OAAN), said that his vision for the West Africa body is to be positioned in such a way that ECOWAS will see the association as partners in progress. “We must without any equivocation set ambitious agenda for the association to achieve some of these key critical objectives.”

The President of the Outdoor Advertising Agency of Nigeria (OAAN), Mr. Babatunde Adedoyin has said that he and members of his association are not afraid of regulation but such efforts from the regulators must be with human face.

For him, this is important because that is when both parties would be on the same page, which would make the process beneficial to everybody in the value chain.

Adedoyin, however urged practitioners across the West African region to work together as it is critical to the growth of the practice on the region and on the continent.

Assessing the out-of-home industry in the last 3 months of 2016, Adedoyin said that it would not be out of place to say that economy is in total recession and in a situation like this there is no way it would not affect our industry. “This first quarter of this year is not rosy at all. In my short introduction I was trying to say that clients are cutting budget. Some clients are not sure what they want to do this year and some can’t even access foreign exchange to bring in raw materials and since they do not have raw materials they can’t produce hence they can’t advertise. The problems are there and we are hoping that next quarter would be better.

“But for the first quarter of this year, as we speak there are no media orders from most companies, some of them are still trying to put it together because of the uncertainty that were facing today. That is the basic truth and I can’t start mentioning organisations. Some are evening owing the last two quarters of last year; I am talking about multinationals.”

On the relationship with regulators, he noted that unfortunately, the regulators are looking for money; though they will tell you is all about environment but not in all cases. “Primarily is about money for them and that is why now that they are not getting much money from the centre, their governors and finance department are looking inward and they are putting more pressure not only on our members but other people.

“Lagos State Signage and Advertisement Agency (LASAA) is trying to collect money at all cost and everybody is looking for ways to get money from operators because allocation coming from the centre is little or nothing therefore, most of them are now thinking that there are internally generated revenues and unfortunately those of us they are trying to get the money from are having the same problem.  Our clients are not doing well, they are not giving orders they are not paying.”

There is a speculation that Lagos State is aiding a foreign company to come to practice in the state. Adedoyin disclosed that the association is not sure though it is rumour because no fact to support it.

“We have asked the LASAA MD that we heard from a reliable source that this foreign company came to their office and a meeting was held, he neither denied nor confirmed. To us is still a rumour and we also asked the registrar of APCON who told us that to his best of knowledge they have not been to him and they can not practice in Nigeria without going APCON.”

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