Safeguarding your smartphone    

If you are worried about your kid cracking open your smartphone to free “Talking Tom” or cringe at the "Read more"

Is Mark Okuttah leaving Business Daily?

The grapevine has it that long-serving Business Daily ICT reporter – Mark Okuttah - may be leaving Nation Centre "Read more"

Maryann Michuki decamps from Safaricom to Philips  

Safaricom’s digital and social media manager Maryann Michuki is leaving the company which she’s been part of since April "Read more"

Politicians and those they follow…on Twitter

You are only as good as the company you keep, so the saying goes. And we can take it further "Read more"

Scramble for right talent, battle for new IT clients...that's Kenya's PR firms

That title to me captures the current on-goings at Kenya’s PR agencies. It seems the competition for new clients "Read more"

Safeguarding your smartphone    

orientIf you are worried about your kid cracking open your smartphone to free “Talking Tom” or cringe at the thought of a street urchin snatching it, then you should give Orient Mobile a thought

Mobile phones being snatched from car windows in traffic jams in Nairobi has unfortunately become a norm rather than exception. Many Matatu passengers have equally lost their pricey gadgets to pickpockets and street urchin during peak hours when their minds are preoccupied with either to work early or going home to their families in the evening.

According to Kenya Orient, the insurance company that pioneered mobile phone insurance in Kenya, one should consider an insurance cover for their phone or tablet if they can’t afford to replace or downgrade to a cheaper option in case of theft or damage.

“If you depend on your cell phone and you know you would need a prompt replacement in case of damage or theft, then Orient Mobile is an insurance cover definitely worth considering” says Muema Muindi from Kenya Orient Insurance.

Losing or damaging your cell phone can be a nightmare because of the resultant loss of data, photos and contacts. However, there are various ways of protecting your handset, tablet and data. “If you have a house teeming with little ones, you never know when those innocent lads decide crack open the gadget and free Talking Tom,” says Muindi

Besides insuring your handset, Mr. Muindi says, it is critical to back up your data either on the web or to the computer.  Irrespective of how expensive your gadget is, the information stockpiled in the device, phone book, photos, videos apps, games, messages, is mega-valuable.

It is thus the assumption of an insurer that you have taken requisite precautions to keep your device secure. Kenya Orient stipulates that theft claims MUST be reported to the police within 48 hours of the theft. If the loss occurs when you are outside Kenya, the insurance policy holder should report the incident to the police in the respective country within 48 hours and get a written report of the same.

“We cover accidental damage e.g. damage caused by dropping the phone/ tablet, malicious damage i.e. vandalism and liquid damage,” says Mr. Muindi.

He explains that unlike other insurance products, mobile phone cover doesn’t depend on one’s gender, job, what you earn or other standard risks and registering a Claim online is easy and takes only a couple of minutes. “All you need is the ID that you used to register for your Kenya Orient  Policy. We however only insure selected models and only mobile phones that can access the internet”.Kenya Orient is a general insurance company registered in Kenya and relies on more than three decades of experience to operationalize new innovative products. We have 13 branches, a staff base of over 140 people.  The insurer is renowned for developing innovative insurance products such as orient mobile, excess free motor pack, Safaribima and they are definitely the insurer to watch for more revolutionary products.

Posted on by Michael Ouma in Analysis & Features Leave a comment

Is Mark Okuttah leaving Business Daily?

Mark Okuttah

Mark Okuttah

The grapevine has it that long-serving Business Daily ICT reporter – Mark Okuttah – may be leaving Nation Centre for a yet-to-be disclosed location after landing a more lucrative offer.

It’s still not clear whether Okuttah is heading to the competition (either Standard Group, The Star or People Daily), joining a PR outfit (the common practice by most journalists) or moving into the corporate world.

Should the rumours be true, it would deal a big blow to Business Daily’s ICt desk as they’ll have to groom a new person to take over from Okuttah or hire from outside.

Okuttah – who joined Business Daily just after inception in 2007 – has been instrumental in breaking both government and corporate related ICT stories. He’s known to have consistently covered the EASSy and TEAMS cable projects, the controversy surrounding the Orange Telkom Kenya debts, sale and executive appointments as well as Konza Technopolies.

And it’s not only Okuttah who’s said to be leaving Nation Media Group (NMG)as Daily Nation’s business editor Wachira Kanga’ru – who’d a short stint at Safaricom before coming back to  former Nation Media together with Washington Akumu – is also said to be heading back to Safaricom.

Others who’ve left NMG’s editorial department in the past include Washington Akumu (went to Redhouse PR) and Peter Mwaura Kimani (joined KCB’s communications department) who’re both working at The EastAfrican and Wangui Maina (formerly a features writer with Business Daily) who also went to Redhouse PR.

Posted on by Michael Ouma in News Leave a comment

Maryann Michuki decamps from Safaricom to Philips  

Maryann Michuki.

Maryann Michuki.

Safaricom’s digital and social media manager Maryann Michuki is leaving the company which she’s been part of since April 2009 to join Philips.

According to her LinkedIn profile, Ms Michuki joined the telco in April 2009 as a marketing communications assistant before assuming the role of digital assets manager one year later. In May 2011, she was appointed to her current position whose duties involves developing and implementing integrated digital strategies, management of Safaricom’s digital assets to ensure consistency and alignment of the brand image as well as championing the use of digital and social media to promote and enhance brand equity.

Those in the know say that she’s just serving her leave before moving to her new role at Philips.

Prior to Safaricom, Ms Michuki had a short stint at GlaxoSmithKline as an intern.

Posted on by Michael Ouma in News Leave a comment

Politicians and those they follow…on Twitter

IwontYou are only as good as the company you keep, so the saying goes. And we can take it further and add that you’re as good as the stuff you read or in this era of social media, you’re defined by who you follow on Twitter.

So, zeroing in on the Twitter bit, I decided to check and see who the global “who-is-who” follows on Twitter, for to be followed by a world-renowned entrepreneur or businesses person, politician, innovator or any kind of celebrity is a mark of approval: that they value your opinion, and want to keep tabs on its by following your handle.

I then started looking at tech innovators and stumbled upon Facebook’s Mark Zuckerberg’s handle -@MarkZuckerbergF. Since joining the social site in 2010, Zuckerberg has only found 3 accounts worth following, that’s Facebook Developers (@fbplatform); Noticias sobre FB (@FB_noticias) and and Facebook’s official account – @facebook. Within this time, the Facebook founder has attracted massed 61,500 followers despite only sending 5 tweets.

His most memeorable tweet – sent on October 16, 2010 – was: “Hello Twitter-Land, as well as tweeting on twitter, Don’t forget to Friend Up with your friends on Facebook !!” It received over 100 retweets.

Then I came down to our politicians, and started checking the people they follow on Twitter, just to gauge the kind of people whose opinions they respect or listen to.

So here goes our selection of the country’s top political leaders and the people they follow on Twitter:

@UKenyatta: Many people believe the account is not handled by the President personally but by the Presidential Strategic Communications Unit (PSCU). However, the 96 people the PSCU team has decided to follow is an important pointer. Among these are other heads of state, heads of UN bodies and other global organizations, local politicians as well as other government agencies. Apart from local politicians, the President follows a number of journalists including Dennis Okari (@DennisOkari), Emmanuel Juma (@EmmanuelJuma1), Peter Opondo (@PeterOpondo), Anita Nderu (@AnitaNderu), Francis Gachuri (@Fchurii), Cynthia Nyamai (@CynthiaNyamai), Evelyn Wambui (@EvelynWambui), Ramah Nyang (@Ramah_Nyang), Terryanne Chebet (@TerryanneChebet) and John-Allan Namu (@johnallannamu) among others.

@WilliamSRuto: The Deputy President, just like the President, doesn’t follow people liberally, going by the total number of accounts followed currently at 76. Just like the President, he also follows a number of heads of government and global organizations as well as local political leaders. However, unlike the President, the DP follows more news organisations’ Twitter accounts than individual journalists. These include The Star, Kenya (@TheStarKenya), K24 TV (@K24Tv), KTN (@KTNKenya), NTV Kenya (@ntvkenya), Citizen TV News (@CitizenTVNews) and KBCChannel1 (@KBCChannel1).

@RailaOdinga: The former PM is more liberal when it comes to following accounts on Twitter, going by the total number of those followed which currently stands at 141. The account follows people in both Government and Opposition, most notable among this being the Deputy President William Samoei Ruto (@WilliamsRuto), Najib Balala (@tunajibu) and Sakaja Johnson *245# (@SakajaJohnson).

@Justinmuturi: The Speaker of the National Assembly’s Twitter handle is the most interesting- despite having 255 followers, he follows only one account (@NelsonMandela) and is yet to post any tweet

@MutahiNgunyi: He makes this list not because he’s a politician but because of his controversial political opinions. Despite being among the most followed accounts in Kenya, he only follows 3 others people, all journalists – that is John-Allan Namu (@johnallannamu), Asha Mwilu (@ashamwilu) and Jeff Koinange MBS (@KoinangeJeff).

Posted on by Michael Ouma in Analysis & Features Leave a comment

Scramble for right talent, battle for new IT clients…that’s Kenya’s PR firms

battleThat title to me captures the current on-goings at Kenya’s PR agencies. It seems the competition for new clients is still as cut-throat as always. Then there is the bitter war for the right people with the required talent and skill sets to service the clients, once the new accounts have come on board.

Let’s start with the scramble for new IT and tech accounts, as the lucrative fees they pay as retainer at the end of each month is what is basically used to pay the attractive salaries for the human resource servicing them.

Finally and eventually, the Samsung account has left the grip of Alfred Ng’ang’a – the PR industry old-hand who handled this consumer electronics account for as long as I can remember, at times even moving with the account as he changed employers.  That goes to show how the Samsung office here trusted and believed in his ability to handle the brand as a person.

Alfred handled Samsung while at MediaEdge before and even after the merger with RedHouse Group. He’s since left RedHouse and moved back to Ogilvy.

The reportedly lucrative Samsung account has moved to Gina Din Group, which also handles other IT-related brands notably Orange Kenya, Zuku, Tracom and most recently ZTE, which they serviced for 3 months. Gina Din Group’s contract with ZTE has Chinese tech vendor may be looking to sign a new agency.

Before Samsung was won by Gina Din, it was briefly held by Transcend Media which even handled the launch the Galaxy S 5 in Kenya.

Away from brands and moving to the hunt for talent, there have been two notable changes – Rodgers Wabito has left H+K Strategies for Tell-Em PR where it’s rumoured he’ll be in-charge of all the ICT-related accounts while Washington Akumu (who moved back to his editor job at Nation Media Group after a brief stint at Safaricom’s communications unit) has joined RedHouse group as an account director.

Tell-Em has various key IT clients that can keep Wabito occupied including Ericsson, Asus, Microsoft, Intel, SAP and Oracle. He should be upto the task as he’s also a PR industry veteran who’s previously handled Safaricom, Nokia and Epson just to name but a few.

Posted on by Michael Ouma in Tech&PR Leave a comment
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