Tag Archives: MultiChoice Nigeria

BBNaija S7 online auditions begin

Reality TV show Big Brother Naija (BBNaija) has begun online auditions for its seventh season.

Nigerian men and women aged over 21 year on July 1 need to record a two-minute video of themselves stating why they should be picked to be part of the show. The videos can be uploaded here. Applications close on May 30.

John Ugbe, CEO of MultiChoice Nigeria, said: “We are set to make history once again with the seventh season of a show that is widely regarded as Africa’s biggest entertainment showcase and a major socio-economic driver in Nigeria. This season promises to top previous seasons in terms of production values, entertainment content, and economic impact.

“The BBNaija reality show remains one of our core investments in bringing quality TV entertainment to millions of our subscribers across the continent on our DStv and GOtv platforms and beyond through our online streaming service, Showmax. We are ramping up efforts to deliver another BBNaija experience to our customers, partner brands and fans of the show.”

The headline sponsor for BBNaija S7 is Abeg while the associate sponsor is Flutterwave.

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Ohanugo to head MultiChoice media sales

Pay TV company MultiChoice Nigeria has appointed Doris Ohanugo as executive head of its subsidiary DStv Media Sales.

Doris Ohanugo

Ohanugo has an excellent pedigree in sales, marketing and strategy with over 10 years’ experience, seven of which have been in the leadership and start-up positions, achieving consistent results in sales and ROI.

An expert in adapting group global brand strategies to suit local consumers and markets, Ohanugo has extensive brand management and strategic planning experience.

From the onset of her career, Ohanugo served as a catalyst for successful marketing and sales initiatives, using superb customer service support as a base, as she firmly believes that the key to business growth is in providing innovative customer solutions.

She was DStv’s regional sales manager in 2012, identifying, developing and implementing new approaches and strategies for business acquisition, retention and success.

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Nigerians attack MultiChoice tariff hike

Nigerians have criticised the planned move by MultiChoice Nigeria to increase the cost of its pay TV service DStv to reflect an increase in value-added tax.

John Ugbe

According to some, the rise in VAT – from 5% to 7.5% from June 1 – is coming at the wrong time since the Covid-19 lockdown has led to an increase in the price of many commodities as well as transportation.

Felix Morka, executive director of the Social Economic Rights Action Centre in Lagos, said: “The vast majority of the people outside the formal system are the major target of the lockdown and it has hit them devastatingly. And any disruption to their daily livelihood has a huge and significant impact on their ability to meet the most basic needs.”

Investigative journalist Fisayo Soyombo took to social media to say: “It’s highly insensitive of DStv to announce a pay hike (starting June 1) in the middle of a pandemic that has left many of us broke. While lots of companies have been financially battered for the past six weeks, DStv is one of the few that has gained from the increased patronage.

“Even those who would not ordinarily renew their DStv subscription did it this time around to keep themselves busy at home during the lockdown. DStv should have shown gratitude by waiting for this pandemic to blow over. This is not how to reward your customers.”

However, John Ugbe, CEO of the Nigerian arm of Naspers-owned African pay TV group MultiChoice, denied the company was hiking subscription rates and said the rise had been forced on the company.

“We are not increasing prices. What has happened is that the federal government’s finance act was signed in January and implementation began in February, so the increase in VAT is what we are implementing now,” he said.

“We thought we could absorb the cost for a while, and that was what we did. We’ve absorbed the cost since February and we have been paying the difference in taxes and we can no longer do so. So once again, we are not hiking prices, it’s only the 2.5% increase in VAT that we are implementing.”

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Ultimate Love reveals contestants

New reality TV show The Ultimate Love has unveiled the 16 housemates who will compete for a chance at romance, and even marriage.

Hosts Dakore Egbuson-Akande and Oluwaseun Olaniyan

The show features people who are single and looking for a relationship and puts them in a tastefully furnished residence known as the Love Pad for two months.

They will be guided by media personality Adesuwa Onyenokwe, who will help the contestants navigate their love life, while Nollywood actor Dakore Egbuson-Akande and radio presenter Oluwaseun Olaniyan host the show.

John Ugbe, CEO of MultiChoice Nigeria, said: “After a long search, we are delighted to have Dakore Akande and Oluwaseun on board as hosts for our new reality show. We believe they have all it takes to deliver a great on-screen experience that will resonate positively with viewers.

“They have done well in their respective careers in the Nigerian entertainment and media space and we believe The Ultimate Love will be a great inclusion to their portfolios as hosts.”

The couple who emerge as the winner will be rewarded with a N5m cash prize, a well-furnished home and lavish traditional wedding if they choose to stay committed.

The contestants are Arnold, David Wilson, Iyke, Jay, Kachi, Louis, Obichukwu, Bolanle, Cherry, Chris, Ebiteinye, Jenny Koko, Rosie, Michael and Theresa.

The show is broadcast on DStv channel 198 and GOtv channel 29.

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Sports ministry to partner MultiChoice

Nigeria’s minister for youth and sports development, Sunday Dare, has revealed plans to partner with MultiChoice Nigeria in an effort to revolutionise the country’s sports sector.

Sunday Dare

The initiative was announced in Abuja when the CEO of MultiChoice Nigeria, John Ugbe, visited the minister.

According to Dare, MultiChoice is well positioned to assist with a reset of the sports sector, which include a revamp of infrastructure, talent development initiatives and a drive for corporate sector involvement to accelerate financial growth in the sector.

Ugbe said: “MultiChoice’s commitment to sports development, which began decades ago, will remain unwavering. The company is the biggest investor in Nigerian sports as well as pre-eminent supporter of Nigerian boxing through Gotv’s boxing night, NextGen search and the recently introduced GOtv boxing night mini, each of which have rescued the sport from the wretched state into which it fell for over two decades.”

He added that MultiChoice is the broadcaster for the Nigerian Professional Football League and live-broadcasts the matches of the Super Eagles, Flying Eagles and Golden Eaglets in addition to games from the prestigious European football leagues and other major global sporting events.

In addition, MultiChoice has funded a training programme in conjunction with the University of Nigeria Nsukka and South Africa’s Wits University to raise sports administration standards.

Dare said: “The desired partnership has the potential to bring about the much-needed renaissance in the sector. The move will be led by Maria Wophill, a deputy director, who will work with MultiChoice to bring the partnership to life.”

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MultiChoice launches holiday specials

Pay TV service provider MultiChoice Nigeria has devised a brand campaign for its customers on the DStv and GOtv platforms to enable them to enjoy more curated contents this festive season.

The campaigns are themed Happier with DStv and Make Time for Family with Gotv. Customers will be able to watch Nigeria festivals such as AFRIMA 2019, Unusual Praise, The Experience, Calabar Carnival, Akwa Ibom Christmas Concert, Miss Africa and Greater Lagos on both DStv 198 & GOtv 29.

Martin Mabutho, chief customer officer at MultiChoice Nigeria, said: “We continue to put our customers at the heart of everything we do. That’s why customers on DStv and GOtv will experience specially curated content, surprise pop-up channels and other top-notch value-added services.

“DStv and GOtv customers will be spoilt for choice with the hottest content and a happier holiday season. Customers can also look forward to Africa’s premier boxing Fiesta, GOtv Boxing Night, which is coming up on December 28 on SuperSport. Also, all Premier League, El Classico and more live sports with expert commentary and analysis on SuperSport this festive.

“In addition, much-loved kids’ pop up channel Animania opens on December 4 and will be the perfect companion for DStv kids this season, with the best animated movies all day and every day. Animania is exclusive to M-Net Smile (channel 105) on DStv Premium.”

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Naija Stand-Up returns to TV

Nigerian pop-up comedy channel Naija Stand-Up is returning to TV screens.

The 12-hour block will offer a variety of skits and other comedy events from comedians such as Ali Baba, Basketmouth, Bovi and AY on the DStv and GOtv platforms from today until Saturday December 7.

The shows will aired include Ali Baba’s Spontaneity show, Lord of the Ribs (from 2018), AY Live Shows (2016, 2017, 2018), Funny Bone Untamed (2017, 2018), Elvis Poko (2019), MC Shaggy, Acapella and a host of others.

According to Martin Mabutho, chief customer officer at MultiChoice Nigeria, the pop-up channel will get customers ready for more exciting content lined up for the upcoming festive season.

“We received a lot of great reviews when the channel made its debut in April. For the second season, we’ve curated some of the biggest comedy shows out of Naija and packaged them into a 12-hour binge fest for the viewing pleasure of our customers, at no extra cost,” he said.

The shows will be aired on DStv channel 197 and GOtv channel 29 and it will be available on all packages on DStv and select packages on GOtv.

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MultiChoice honours media with party

Pay TV outfit MultiChoice Nigeria held an end-of-year party in an effort to strengthen its relationship with other media organisations.

Martin Mabutho

Hosted by Big Brother Naija 2017 contestant Bisola Aiyeola, the party took place in Lagos.

As well as being a gesture of appreciation of the support shown by the media in 2018, the event also provided insight into MultiChoice’s international plans for next year.

These include blockbuster movies, local and international shows, sports, kids’ content, telenovelas and value-added services like the DStv Now app and BoxOffice.

Martin Mabutho, the firm’s chief customer officer, said: “2018 was definitely a year to remember for us as we celebrated numerous milestones, including the incredibly successful Big Brother Naija: Double Wahala; end-to-end coverage of the FIFA World Cup, Premier League, UEFA Champions League, La Liga and Italia Serie A, which we brought back to our screens; and the launch of the MultiChoice Talent Factory, our flagship investment initiative to train Africa’s future storytellers.

“MultiChoice and Africa Magic also celebrated 25 years and 15 years respectively of providing world-class international and local content to viewers across the continent.

“All these successes have been recorded because of the incredible support given to us by the media across all platforms. As is our tradition, we celebrate and recognise the incredible role they continue to play across the industries where we operate.”

 

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DStv, GOtv to air Africa Cup of Nations

MultiChoice-owned pay TV channels DStv and GOtv will broadcast the 2019 Africa Cup of Nations (AFCON) live when it is held in Egypt this summer.

The 52 matches of the 32nd edition of the tournament, held between June 21 and July 19, will be offered live on GOtv and in HD on DStv.

The competition will be held at six venues: Cairo International Stadium; 30 June Stadium, Cairo; Al Salaam Stadium, Cairo; Alexandria Stadium; Suez Stadium; and Ismailia Stadium.

The event will feature a 24-team format for the first time and the SuperSport broadcast will feature expert opinion and insight from top commentators and veterans.

Martin Mabutho, MultiChoice Nigeria’s chief customer officer, said: “We are thrilled to continue to cater to our customers’ football appetites with one of the most anticipated football tournaments of the year, and what makes it even more exciting this time around is that most of the countries we operate in are represented in AFCON 2019.”

The tournament will kick off with a match between Egypt and Zimbabwe at Cairo International Stadium.

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BBNaija to begin online auditions

Online auditions are underway to find the final housemate for the forthcoming fourth season of reality show Big Brother Naija (BBN).

The show’s producers are looking for Nigerians aged at least 21 and with a valid international passport. Candidates must also be subscribers to pay TV platforms DStv or GOtv. Auditions require them to submit a two-minute video of themselves explaining why they should be selected.

Live auditions have already been conducted across eight different states in Nigeria.

John Ugbe, CEO of MultiChoice Nigeria, said: “We are giving more Nigerians one more chance to be a part of the biggest reality TV show on the continent by introducing an additional online audition process.

“We’ve seen how much the show continues to resonate with Nigerians and it’s our desire to create more success stories from the BBNaija platform.

“We are excited about this new twist and ask that more Nigerians take advantage of this novel opportunity to actualise their dreams of getting into the BBNaija house.”

Big Brother Naija 2019 is sponsored by online betting platform Bet9ja. It is based on the Big Brother reality format owned by Endemol Shine Group.

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MultiChoice execs reveal talent aims

MultiChoice Nigeria executives have outlined their hopes for the MultiChoice Talent Factory (MTF) initiative, which will see 60 students being trained by the firm.

John Ugbe

During a recent press conference, MultiChoice Nigeria MD John Ugbe said the MTF was created to help develop African stories by using local narratives with a worldwide appeal.

The 60 students will be selected from more than 3,000 applicants. They will begin the 12 month programme, fully funded by MultiChoice, on October 1.

Cheryl Uys-Allie, director of the MTF, said the scheme would develop the skillset of upcoming filmmakers and content creators to ensure growth of the local film industries.

Femi Odugbemi, filmmaker and MTF regional director, added: “From the thousands of applications received, it’s evident that there’s a strong desire to learn from and work with other African creatives.

“Not only will the MultiChoice Talent Factory be a springboard to a career in the entertainment industry, but it will also create a close-knit community of African professionals with a willingness to narrate Africa’s stories to the world.”

The MTF initiative began in May and has launched academies in Nigeria, Zambia and Kenya.

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MultiChoice unveils soccer star ad

Football player Alex Iwobi

Pay TV platform DSTV has launched an advertising campaign featuring its new brand ambassador, international football star Alex Iwobi.

In July, DSTV owner MultiChoice Nigeria announced the Super Eagles and Arsenal FC forward as its brand ambassador for the DSTV Compact bouquet.

The pay TV company has now launched an ad campaign featuring Iwobi, which includes TV, digital, radio and press adverts and was launched to coincide with the start of 2018/19 Premier League season.

With this new ad, Iwobi showcases his passion for football and uses it to tell a story about the importance of choices.

According to Martin Mabutho, general manager of sales and marketing at MultiChoice Nigeria: “It’s always about choices. As people, we make choices every single day, and the choices we make play a huge role in shaping who we become in future.

“Alex Iwobi is who he is today because of some of the brilliant choices he made in the past; taking up his uncle’s mantle by juggling a football, to signing with top football club Arsenal FC.

“The power of fun and affordability defines Compact and with over 120 channels, our customers are spoilt for choice with front-row live football action from the Premier League, Serie A, La Liga and perfectly picked local drama series, action movies and other lifestyle channels.”

Premier League matches are available on the Compact package for N6,800 (US$19) monthly. New subscribers can get the HD Decoder, dish and one month DSTV Compact subscription for N11,900.

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Multichoice lowers decoder prices

Pay TV operator MultiChoice Nigeria has cut the price of its decoders ahead of this summer’s FIFA World Cup.

Martin Mabutho

The company has lowered the cost of its DSTV and GOtv decoders by 14% as it seeks to attract football fans to its coverage of every game of the tournament.

Martin Mabutho, general manager of sales and marketing at MultiChoice Nigeria, revealed the news at the recent launch of its World Cup coverage, which is using the slogan ‘Connect with Greatness.’

“The FIFA World Cup is football’s biggest event, featuring the best players and national teams all fighting for one ultimate prize,” Mabutho said. “We are proud to say that we have been broadcasting the tournament since 2006 and this edition won’t be any different, as we will be showing all 64 matches of the World Cup live and in HD on DSTV and GOtv.”

A DSTV HD decoder, a dish kit and a free one-month Compact bouquet subscription is now available for N8,500, while a GOtv decoder, an antenna and a complimentary GOtv Max subscription can be purchased for N5,900.

DSTV and GOtv subscribers will be able to access exclusive live coverage and analysis of the World Cup, which begins in Russia on June 14, on the SuperSport channels. However, GOtv Value bouquet subscribers will  only have access 56 of the 64 matches.

MultiChoice is also set to launch a pop-up channel dedicated to the history of football. It will air exclusively on DSTV channel 187 for 14 days starting from May 28.

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Multichoice ‘to lose NBC licence’

MultiChoice Nigeria may be forced to stop running its pay TV networks DSTV and GOtv after reports suggested it would not be able to renew its licence when it expires next June.

The company has allegedly received a letter from the Nigerian Broadcasting Corporation (NBC) stating that the licence issued to it by NBC in 2014 would not be renewed because it was not in line with Digital Switch Over white paper.

NBC spokeswoman Maimuna Jimada said: “In line with the government’s white paper on the transition from analogue to digital broadcasting, after June 2019, pay DTT operators would no longer be licensed to operate as both content providers and signal distributors. They will henceforth have to be carried by the licensed signal distributors.”

To continue operations in 2019, MultiChoice will have to go to licensed signal distribution companies Pinnacle Communications Ltd or ITS.

Content Nigeria has yet to receive a response to a request for comment from MultiChoice Nigeria.

Prior to receiving the alleged letter, MultiChoice had been accused of overcharging Nigerian subscribers by increasing its prices and offering inflexible subscription options.

MultiChoice Nigeria began operations in 1993 with pay TV platform DSTV. It has since expanded to become one of the leading broadcasting companies in Nigeria, with its pay TV platforms DSTV and GOtv.

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Perfect Wedding adapted for Nigeria

Reality show Our Perfect Wedding, which began in 2011 in South Africa, has arrived in Nigeria.

Vanessa Williams

Having run successfully in South Africa, Kenya and Zimbabwe, the format has been adapted for Nigeria, following local couples as they plan and organise their weddings.

The show reveals all that goes on when making preparations, including venue arrangements, traditional ceremonies and the drama that accompanies in-laws while trying to achieve the perfect wedding.

Coproduced by Adeola Oloyede, the show has Suleiman Kazeem as the executive producer and former Big Brother housemate Vanessa Williams (aka Vandora) as the host.

According to Williams: “This is an exciting opportunity for me, and viewers can expect to be completely entertained by this show and they should expect nothing less than the best from the leading home of entertainment in Africa.”

Martin Mabutho, chief customer officer at broadcaster MultiChoice Nigeria, said: “The show has been successful in other African markets like South Africa and Kenya, and we’re elated to bring it to Nigeria.

“Viewers will experience the magic and celebration of love. Of all the awesome wedding shows we’ve had on DStv, this without a doubt holds a lot of drama, fun and excitement for the viewers and we are delighted to bring this truly interesting show to Nigeria.”

Our Perfect Wedding Nigeria airs at 18.00 on Sundays on DStv Channel 151.

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Mabutho rules out pay-as-you-use TV

Pay-as-you-use content cannot work in the TV world, according to Martin Mabutho, general manager of sales and marketing for pay TV giant MultiChoice Nigeria.

Martin Mabutho

Speaking at the sixth edition of the Nigerian Entertainment Conference last week, Mabutho addressed concerns about the lack of a pay-as-you-use option on MultiChoice-owned platform DSTV.

“There is nothing like a pay-as-you-use service on any TV service in the world,” he said. “We have stated this over and over again. Yes, there is pay-per-view but pay-as-you-use is non-existent.

“Furthermore, it can’t work because we buy rights and it will affect us if we offer a service where you switch on a channel like you are turning on a tap and, when you have no need for it, you switch it off. It can’t work like that.”

Mabutho also spoke about the launch of the DSTV Now mobile app. “150 channels can be accessed on DSTV Now, unlike years ago when DSTV Mobile could only offer 10 channels. Traditional TV is not dead but many individuals are fast preferring access on the go,” he said.

The exec’s comments came a few days after DSTV reality hit Big Brother Naija (BBNaija) had concluded, having delivered huge audiences across the previous 12 weeks.

“The next big thing after BBNaija is the World Cup,” Mabutho said. “We are official partners of [Nigerian national football team] Super Eagles and we aim to ensure that our subscribers get access to the Russia 2018 World Cup wherever and whenever they want, which is why we have created DSTV Catchup, where content can be downloaded to be viewed afterwards.”

MultiChoice is the parent company of pay TV platforms DSTV and GOtv. It is one of the leading digital television operator in Nigeria.

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MTF Academy receives book donations

MultiChoice Nigeria’s recently launched talent-search initiative, the MTF Academy, has received a number of book donations for its library.

Emeka Mba

Those who have donated include Emeka Mba, former director general of the National Broadcasting Commission, who provided 300 books; and movie producer Lilian Amah, who gave 10 copies of her most recently published book.

Meanwhile, professor Abraham Linus, former dean of Ghana’s National Film & Television Institute, donated two copies of his book on visual literacy, while the Committee for the Relevant Arts has provided 100 books.

The wide range of books includes autobiographies, novels, biographies and topics such as the arts. The donations are an attempt to ensure a reading culture among students at the MTF Academy.

Mba said: “MultiChoice, through the MTF project, has rewritten the narrative of the creative industry by investing in the students of the MultiChoice Talent Factory Academy.

“Sharing ideas and knowledge is key, and knowledge is the only thing that you share and it grows. You cannot be a good lawyer if you don’t read cases. So, if you want to be a good filmmaker with impactful stories to tell, you have to read.”

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MultiChoice picks up four marketing awards

Pay TV operator MultiChoice has won four awards at the Brands and Advertising Awards of Excellence held in Lagos.

Martin Mabutho

The annual ceremony, organised by Marketing Edge and themed ‘Story telling as a new paradigm shift in contemporary brand building: Convergence of creativity and technology,’ was aimed at celebrating the most innovative minds in the integrated marketing communications industry.

The company won the Outstanding Entertainment Services Provider of the Decade award, while its DStv and GOtv brands received the Outstanding Pay-TV Brand of the Decade and Innovative Digital Terrestrial Television Brand of the Year awards respectively.

Martin Mabutho, MultiChoice Nigeria’s chief customer officer, also received the Outstanding Brand Personality of the Year award.

John Ajayi, CEO of Marketing Edge, said: “Our resolve to recognise and reward our deserving awardees, peers and gladiators – some of them personalities and institutions that have contributed tremendously to the nation – is a result of, and in sync with, our raison d’être, which is promoting the brand idea.”

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MultiChoice unveils Ramadan channel

MultiChoice Nigeria is preparing to launch a special pop-up channel for muslim subscribers on DStv and GOtv throughout the month of Ramadan.

John Ugbe

This channel is dedicated to take care of the spiritual needs of Muslims by broadcasting local Ramadan-related content.

The pop-up channel will run from May 5 to June 4 and will air Ramadan content including talkshows, music, lifestyle, cooking shows, docuseries, daily calls to prayer, children’s programmes and conduct and obligations of Muslims during Ramadan.

John Ugbe, CEO of MultiChoice Nigeria, said: “We are delighted to launch the Ramadan Pop-up Channel, which is a platform carefully created to provide faith-nourishing television content for every member of the Muslim family, including the young ones.

“The month of Ramadan is an important one for Muslims worldwide, as it provides an opportunity for physical as well as spiritual purification through fasting, increase in worship and recitation of the Holy Quran. The Ramadan Pop-up Channel provides a platform for our subscribers to have access to programmes that increase their faith and trust in Allah.”

He further explained that the channel will provide programmes that will strengthen the beliefs of Muslims and also entertain them throughout the Ramadan period.

Active subscribers on all DStv packages including DStv Now, as well as GOtv Plus and GOtv Max Muslim customers, will have access to the channel.

The specific channel codes have not yet been announced.

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MultiChoice unwraps festive package

Pay TV group MultiChoice Nigeria has revealed a special offer for its customers who use DStv and GOtv platforms to mark the festive season.

Martin Mabutho

As part of a campaign tagged #FestiveTogether, unique content will be made available on DStv and GOtv channels and subscribers will also have access to discounts on the Explora and HD decoders.

According to MultiChoice Nigeria’s chief customer officer Martin Mabutho: “The festive season is a great time for family and friends to come together, and we are making those moments extra special with world-class content on our platforms.”

He added that the upcoming festive season will have good TV content that can be enjoyed by the entire family.

“Our customers will enjoy their yearly festive tradition even more as they create new memories with a line-up of amazing content, such as our special Nigerian Festivals pop-up channel which features some of the biggest music concerts and shows on the continent including The Experience, Calabar Carnival, Akwa Ibom Christmas Concert and One Lagos Fiesta,” he added.

“We also have the much-loved special kiddies’ channel, Animania, which will be a perfect companion for DStv kids this season. Football lovers will still enjoy the matches of the best football leagues in the world: the English Premier League, UEFA Champions League, La Liga and SerieA Live, and in glorious HD on SuperSport channels.”

The Explora dish kit was formally N52,100 but is now N29,900, while the HD decoder dish kit has been reduced to N9, 900 from N11, 900.

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