What to expect at NEC 2015

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By Adedayo Odulaja


When participants of the 3rd edition of the Nigerian Entertainment Conference settle down at Eko Hotel and Suites, venue of the 3rd edition on Wednesday, April 22, 2015, they should be ready to leave the conference happier, more enlightened and surely more confident at the end of proceedings.

This belief is not borne out of the fact that they are coming to a crusade ground where a supernatural hand is going to take away all troubles but it was inspired by the knowledge that they are coming to the market place of ideas, instructive leanings and enlightening deliberations.

When the first edition of NEC held in 2013, many in the Nigerian entertainment playground must have wondered what purpose it had come to serve. But those who were privileged to be at the second edition in 2014 would tell you it is one gathering you should not miss.

For the 3rd edition this year, themed: ‘Buying and Selling Nigerian Entertain And Everything In Between, the meal will surely be served even hotter and fresher as things get underway from 9am on Wednesday. From the Host’s introduction and national anthem to be taken by ‘Murda’ singer, Seyi Shay, NECLive will kick in fully with a brief welcome note by Ayeni Adekunle, publisher/Editor-in-Chief of NET and Chairman of the Nigerian Entertainment Conference.

The first part of the sessions, titled: The Future of Music and Fans (The science of tracking and monetizing airplay) are to be anchored by respected research and marketing consultant, George Thorpe and Lanre Dabiri, the founder of PlayData, better known to Nigerian music lovers as Eldee. The lead session has a panel including Daryn Wober, CEO of Ventra Media; Deji Awokoya, General Manager of Megalectrics and Tony Okoroji, Chairman of COSON and will be moderated by Zainab Balogun of Ebonylife TV.

Coming on the heels of this is Panel Discussion 1, with the title: How to sell Nigerian content, involving Theo Lawson, CEO of Total Consult; Chioma Ude of AFRIFF, Femi Falodun of ID Africa; Wunmi Obe, recording act, producer and half of the popular TWO as well as Nollywood actress, Ini Edo.

The session, to be moderated by Ehiz Okoeaguale of MTV Base, will be followed by NET Honours, an annual ritual of awarding deserved industry players with immense contributions.

Session 2 begins after a short coffee break with Teaching and training tomorrow’s talent. The session will feature Nollywood icon and director of studies at Lufodo Academy of Performing Arts as speaker. The panel consists of http://thenet.ng/?s=Linus+Idahosa, CEO of Del-York International, Wole Olagundoye of EXP, filmmaker and writer, Chris Ihidero and actor and producer, Kemi Lala Akindoju. The panel discussion will be moderated by ‘Dayo Odulaja, Assistant Editor of Nigerian Entertainment Today.

Panel Discussion 2 is titled: New Distribution Models and features Demola Ogundele, founder of NotjustOk.com; Chika Maduegbuna, Director of Grid Consulting Limited; Chika Nwobi, Co-founder/Director 440.NG; Innocent Uba, CEO of Uba Pacific Limited and Rasaq Abdullahi, CEO of Corporate Pictures. The panel discussion will be moderated by Oreka Godis, presenter at EbonyLife TV.

At this point, the breakout sessions begin. First session bears the title: What is Fashion? Respected fashion designer, Mai Atafo leads in the discussion while the second session titled: Finance and Investment Opportunities will be led by Ojoma Ochai, Director of Arts at British Council Nigeria; Tola Odukoya, MD, Dunn Loren Merrifield Asset Management & Research Co. and Dike Dimiri, Group Head, Enterprise risk management, Heritage Bank Company Plc.

The third session is The Power of Photography, a practical session led by Yetunde Babaeko, CEO of Camara Studios just as the fourth session is Legal Perspectives from an insider led by Olatunde Laoye, Managing Partner, L&A Legal Consultants.

The netwoek part, like its name, will afford conference an avenue for networking and lunch break planned to come shortly before intermission (tribute to departing industry players) to be handled by Segun Arinze and Ruby Gyang.

Session 3 begins with Music on Steroids and will have self-styled Omo Baba Olowo, Davido and Sheyi Akerele (Shizzi) involved. The session closely following that is: Not dying Soon and this involves another music star, M.I Abaga, with a full complement of colleagues like Shizzi, Bez, Seyi Shay, Davido, Deji Awokoya of Megalectrics to be moredated by Osagie Alonge, Editor-in-chief of Pulse.

Session 4 is the Market Square and includes a presentation of a book by NET titled: Wanderings of a rapidly degenerated mind by Chris Ihidero. A demonstration by DJ Spinall on Orin and 5ive Music Presentation: Changing the game by Paul Okeugo are involved.

And after another break, this time for canapés and coffee, the fifth session is expected to kick in.

Titled Contents of the future (plus case studies), the session will see the involvement of Mo Abudu, founder of Ebonylife TV with a panel including, Felix King, MD Oracle Experience Limited; Mark Rearguard, CEO of 960 Music Group and DJ Jimmy Jatt. Buki Sawyerr-Izeogu, a radio personality at Classic FM will moderate the session.

Panel Discussion 3 is titled: Why Image matters and it will have Ifeoma Williams, Principal Consultant, Fruition Image Africa; Bolaji Okusaga, CEO/MD, The Quadrant Company and Shina Peller, CEO of Quilox, taking part in it. The session will be moderated by Olamide Adedeji (Channel Manager of CMA Group).

With only the closing address of Henry Ekechukwu, Vice President, Corporate Brand and Strategy Communications, Dunn Loren Merrified Group and Conference coordinator left, the cocktails and NEC JumpOff begins.

But, by and large, everyone would surely be glad to have been part of NEC this year when curtains are drawn and will surely look forward to next year’s edition with some eagerness.

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