Renowned marketing communication practitioner and Chairman, Troika Group, Biodun Shobanjo and other stakeholders have asked players in the outdoor advertising industry to seek mergers and acquisition as was done in the banking industry in order to survive the economic hardship in the country.
Shobanjo who was the Guest speaker at the 10th annual Poster Awards of the Outdoor Advertising Agencies of Nigerian (OAAN) in Lagos recently, explained at the event that the proliferation of outdoor agencies in the face of dwindling patronage will led to the closure of some agencies and loss of job except there is a concerted effort by agencies to merge.
When you have an economy that is no longer vibrant, one of the first casualties is the integrated marketing communications sector which is why operators have to innovate or die. There is no reason to have so many outdoor agencies chocking the industry when they could converge to be stronger and more efficient, he said while delivering a paper titled The Indices of a Vibrant Economy: Outdoor Advertising as a Catalyst at the 10th OAAN Poster Awards 2016.
Shobanjo, the doyen of marketing communication in Nigeria as he is fondly called by industry players said France has just five out of home agencies likewise many other civilised countries. He said over regulation is also killing the industry noting that no global outdoor organization would want to practice in Nigeria because the regulations would kill them.
Stakeholders at the event one after the other supported Shobanjos submission on Mergers and acquisition. President of OAAN, Tunde Adedoyin also agreed with Shobanjos submission in his speech. According to him: What we are saying is it is time for us in this sector to come together, regulators and operators, in order to understand the industry. Presently OAAN members are paying 50 per cent of their revenue as rate cost.
The president further said: Primary among the issues that have seriously challenged our practice is the emerging unfriendly environment to profitably engage in outdoor advertising practice in Nigeria, occasioned by the almost suffocating regulations, very high financial demands by way of outrageous and unjustifiable permit fees. Policies of the signage and advertising agencies and their likes that has now mushroomed across the country both at the states and federal levels leading clients to either cut down drastically on their budget or out rightly abandon us for other media platforms such as digital media.
The Minister of Information, Alhaji Lai Mohammed represented by the Registrar, Advertising Practitioners Council of Nigeria (APCON), Alhaji Garba Bello Kankarofi said government will create the enabling environment for the practice of outdoor advertising.