Nigerian woman launches entertainment TV network

LAGOS, Nigeria (AP) — A woman who could be considered Africa’s Oprah Winfrey is launching an entertainment network that will be beamed into nearly every country on the continent with programs showcasing its burgeoning middle class.

Mosunmola “Mo” Abudu wants EbonyLife TV to inspire Africans and the rest of the world, and change how viewers perceive the continent. The network’s programming tackles women’s daily life subjects — everything from sex tips to skin bleaching.

“Not every African woman has a pile of wood on her head and a baby strapped to her back!” the glamorous 48-year-old told The Associated Press from a hotel’s penthouse floor against a backdrop of the Atlantic Ocean and high-rise buildings flanked by palm and almond trees.

“We watch Hollywood as if all of America is Hollywood,” she said. “In that same vein we need to start selling the good bits of Africa.”

Months of work to provide original content includes the flagship program “Sistaz!” about two Greek-Nigerian sisters and a British-born Nigerian friend who check into the Eko Hotel for a holiday reunion and rediscover the passion of sisterhood and the vibrant city of Lagos.

“It helps show that you can go to Africa for a holiday, you can go to Nigeria on holiday, you can go to Lagos” and enjoy a vacation, Abudu said of the much-maligned Nigerian financial capital that is much improved since the country transitioned from military dictatorship to civilian rule in 1999.

The characters are as cosmopolitan as Abudu, a tall and elegant woman with sculpted cheekbones. She was born in London, came to Nigeria when she was a youngster and returned to Britain after her father died when she was 12. She returned to settle when she married a Nigerian at age 28.

Once her children were in their teens, Abudu, a former executive with the oil giant Exxon-Mobil, abandoned a 20-year career in human resources in 2006 to become a self-taught television talk show host. “Moments with Mo” became the first syndicated daily talk show on African regional TV and also is aired in Britain on a Sky TV channel.

She has interviewed celebrities from Hillary Rodham Clinton, former African presidents F. W. de Klerk of South Africa and John Kufuor of Ghana, former England soccer skipper Rio Ferdinand, musician R. Kelly and American fashion icon Diane Von Furstenberg.

A telling moment for Abudu came she was standing at London’s Marble Arch and decided, on a whim, to ask people what came to their minds when they heard the word Africa.

The answers ranged from Robert Mugabe, Zimbabwe’s dictatorial ruler of 33 years, the British charity Oxfam and famine to babies with flies on their faces. “The nicest thing I heard was ‘sunshine,'” said an appalled Abudu.

Years later, she is setting out to transform that vision by shining a bright light on the so-called “dark continent’s” riches — its super-talented young entrepreneurs, fabulous art scene, up-and-coming fashion designers, provocative authors and sassy musicians.

One program is hosted by rhythm and blues artist Banky W and singer-songwriter Tiwa Savage. Their first program discusses why more and more Nigerian women are bleaching their skins and whether men prefer lighter-skinned black women.

So the network will not ignore some of the darker sides of Africa’s realities, though Abudu promises “a different reality.”

It will feature a specially commissioned movie, “New Horizons,” from award-winning filmmaker Tope Oshin Ogun that bares the plight of women across the continent subjected to domestic abuse, a prevalent crime that is not often addressed.

And radio host Oreka Godis stars in “Love Lounge,” where she will ask the cheeky questions for which she is known of sexologists, life coaches and psychotherapists.

While Nollywood movies also are notorious for often poor quality, though this is improving, Abudu aims for the highest quality in a network she hopes will eventually be broadcast beyond Africa to the millions in the diaspora.

“What we say is ‘Everything you think you know about Africa is about to change,'” Abudu said.

 

Yahoo news

 

Africa’s Oprah? Brit-Nigerian launches first black entertainment TV network showcasing Africa

LAGOS, Nigeria — A woman who could be considered Africa’s Oprah Winfrey is launching an entertainment network that will be beamed into nearly every country on the continent with programs showcasing its burgeoning middle class.

Mosunmola “Mo” Abudu wants EbonyLife TV to inspire Africans and the rest of the world, and change how viewers perceive the continent. The network’s programming tackles women’s daily life subjects — everything from sex tips to skin bleaching.

“Not every African woman has a pile of wood on her head and a baby strapped to her back!” the glamorous 48-year-old told The Associated Press from a hotel’s penthouse floor against a backdrop of the Atlantic Ocean and high-rise buildings flanked by palm and almond trees.

“We watch Hollywood as if all of America is Hollywood,” she said. “In that same vein we need to start selling the good bits of Africa.”

Months of work to provide original content includes the flagship program “Sistaz!” about two Greek-Nigerian sisters and a British-born Nigerian friend who check into the Eko Hotel for a holiday reunion and rediscover the passion of sisterhood and the vibrant city of Lagos.

“It helps show that you can go to Africa for a holiday, you can go to Nigeria on holiday, you can go to Lagos” and enjoy a vacation, Abudu said of the much-maligned Nigerian financial capital that is much improved since the country transitioned from military dictatorship to civilian rule in 1999.

The characters are as cosmopolitan as Abudu, a tall and elegant woman with sculpted cheekbones. She was born in London, came to Nigeria when she was a youngster and returned to Britain after her father died when she was 12. She returned to settle when she married a Nigerian at age 28.

Once her children were in their teens, Abudu, a former executive with the oil giant Exxon-Mobil, abandoned a 20-year career in human resources in 2006 to become a self-taught television talk show host. “Moments with Mo” became the first syndicated daily talk show on African regional TV and also is aired in Britain on a Sky TV channel.

She has interviewed celebrities from Hillary Rodham Clinton, former African presidents F. W. de Klerk of South Africa and John Kufuor of Ghana, former England soccer skipper Rio Ferdinand, musician R. Kelly and American fashion icon Diane Von Furstenberg.

A telling moment for Abudu came she was standing at London’s Marble Arch and decided, on a whim, to ask people what came to their minds when they heard the word Africa.

The answers ranged from Robert Mugabe, Zimbabwe’s dictatorial ruler of 33 years, the British charity Oxfam and famine to babies with flies on their faces. “The nicest thing I heard was ‘sunshine,’” said an appalled Abudu.

Years later, she is setting out to transform that vision by shining a bright light on the so-called “dark continent’s” riches — its super-talented young entrepreneurs, fabulous art scene, up-and-coming fashion designers, provocative authors and sassy musicians.

One program is hosted by rhythm and blues artist Banky W and singer-songwriter Tiwa Savage. Their first program discusses why more and more Nigerian women are bleaching their skins and whether men prefer lighter-skinned black women.

So the network will not ignore some of the darker sides of Africa’s realities, though Abudu promises “a different reality.”

It will feature a specially commissioned movie, “New Horizons,” from award-winning filmmaker Tope Oshin Ogun that bares the plight of women across the continent subjected to domestic abuse, a prevalent crime that is not often addressed.

And radio host Oreka Godis stars in “Love Lounge,” where she will ask the cheeky questions for which she is known of sexologists, life coaches and psychotherapists.

While Nollywood movies also are notorious for often poor quality, though this is improving, Abudu aims for the highest quality in a network she hopes will eventually be broadcast beyond Africa to the millions in the diaspora.

“What we say is ‘Everything you think you know about Africa is about to change,’” Abudu said.

Copyright 2013 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

 

Washington post

 

EbonyLife TV Launches in Grand Style

TINAPA, CALABAR (JUNE 30, 2013) EbonyLife TV, Africa’s first Global Black Entertainment network, Channel 165 on DStv, launches Sunday, June 30, 2013, in a remarkable fashion, ending an era of anxious anticipation, while beginning a new and enthralling dawn in the viewing experience of millions of people in over 44 African countries.
The Launch of the “Global Black” Channel, clearly a first-of-its-kind and an industry’s tour de force, is a Black Tie event holding at the luxurious Eko Hotel & Suites, Adetokunbo Ademola Street, Victoria Island, Lagos, Nigeria.
The event will be graced by the distinguished presence of some of the most influential African dignitaries including Presidents, Governors, Ministers, Technocrats, luminaries and captains of industries; as well as media, fashion, music, film and entertainment moguls. The Chairman of the occasion is His Excellency, Dr. Goodluck Ebele Jonathan (GCFR), President of the Federal Republic of Nigeria.
The Keynote Speaker of the day is Mr. Steve Forbes, highly rated Chairman and Editor-in-Chief of Forbes Media, world renowned establishment which has become an icon of distinction across the world for recognizing worthy business decision-makers, investors and progressive individuals making real impact around the world by stimulating business growth, spearheading innovation, creating employment and influencing great change in the national or global economy.

The Launch event, by modest standards, is a compelling celebration of the very Best of Africa. Loaded with many glittering highlights among which include a celebration of the most scintillating medley of the best music, fashion and film from the past fifty years; Gold Carpet, with ample opportunity to be seen in the grandest of styles; sterling performances by accomplished artistes and much more, the EbonyLife TV Launch is simply set to be a classic.
A major feature of the day and probably the icing on the cake of the event is the EbonyLife TV Awards. For the first time ever, important personalities who have and continue to have significant influence on the media, entertainment, business, political and economic landscapes of the African continent, and whose profiles have come through months of intense research and a thorough verification exercise by Forbes, will be honored and celebrated in a magnificent atmosphere that will no doubt go into history as one of the biggest and most prestigious events in Africa in the year 2013. The Awards will be presented by Mr. Steve Forbes.
The launch will of course feature sneak peeks into the EbonyLife TV programming which viewers of Channel 165 on Premium, Compact and Compact Plus packages in over 44 African countries will start to enjoy as the Channel launches via the DStv platform.
Speaking on the launch, a gleeful and fulfilled Mo Abudu, Chairman & CEO, EbonyLife TV, has this to say, “My delight comes from finally creating a channel that appeals to Africa’s most important demographic, there seems to be little or no content speaking to this key demographic and secondly I am delighted, that we have finally created a channel which can sit shoulder to shoulder with any international brand, quality wise.”
Unique programming is at the very heart of the EbonyLife TV vision, which is “to be the preferred global network for premium African entertainment”. This vision is the major driving force and impetus for the continuous creation and production of the Channel’s over 700 hours of premium content that cuts across drama, comedy, reality, lifestyle, talk, magazine, feature film and factual, all promising to showcase the best of the African continent for a Global Black audience, with utmost originality, passion and inspiration.
Adding to the festivities, MultiChoice Africa CEO, Nico Meyer added his congratulatory message: “Congratulations to everyone who made the launch of this channel possible. As a proudly African company, today marks an important milestone for our business. As long-standing advocates of this continent and its potential, the launch of Ebony Life TV is once again a reinforcement of the need to celebrate cultural expression.
MultiChoice Africa recognises that Africa is the sum of its parts and forms part of a global village of people with diverse backgrounds and culture. The launch of this channel is a celebration of the upwardly mobile, global black African with programming that honours black cultural identity, the successes and achievements of black people in the continent, the diaspora and the rest of the global village.
As MultiChoice we recognise that if we are to cater for the needs of the different demographic market segments, variety on our DStv channels will bring authentic and meaningful engagement with our subscribers.”
For Pamela Ofoegbu, Director of Reality Programming and Acting Head of Programmes, EbonyLife TV, “What an honor and privilege to be part of the dynamic team at EbonyLife TV. The opportunity to create indigenous African Brands is an inspiration that will resound across our continent and internationally.”

Quinty Pillay, Director, Scripted programming, EbonyLife TV believes “The launch of EbonyLife TV is a dream come true for me and I feel extremely blessed to be a part of creating great, inspiring content with an African soul that showcases the best of Africa for a global audience.”

Sandra Amadio, Director of Entertainment Programming, EbonyLife TV, reminisces on the journey so far. “To think the idea for EbonyLife TV started with a single thought…and today we find ourselves at the doorway of a new dawn. The time to showcase the other Africa’ has come and I am both humbled and in awe of the possibilities. In my heart I have always believed that Africa is the future.”
The Channel launches with an even greater promise for especially leading and growing indigenous African and international brands. EbonyLife TV’s goal is to help deliver the message of these brands to that most important demographic on the continent that boasts over 1 billion consumers. EbonyLife TV will help brands engage and connect with their most important focal market, like never before.
The Channel’s key target demographic is the African youth aged 18 to 34, and through its partnership with Globecast – the leading global provider of content management and worldwide transmission services for professional broadcast delivery, providing technical backbone and driving content distribution on Android, Tablets, Mobile and Web – EbonyLife TV is set to enable brands connect passionately with these key drivers of arguably the most vital segment of any economy.
The Launch of EbonyLife TV is a big step for its world class team of industry experts drawn from the most diverse backgrounds and continents, all committed to the vision of building Africa’s first Global Black Entertainment Network; but more significantly, it is a huge leap for the long suffering but dynamic African media and entertainment industry.

 
National Anthem

National Anthem

At EbonyLife TV, we take pride in being Nigerian and playing our role in our nation and on our continent. Everything you know about Africa is about to change. Click here to watch our Nigerian National anthem.  Showcasing the beauty of our heritage, as we take Africa to a new level of entertainment.
To be inspired click here.

 

EbonyLife TV launches July 1st

EbonyLife TV, Africa’s first Global Black Entertainment Network, Channel 165 on DStv, launches in style, beginning a new and enthralling dawn in the viewing experience of millions of people in Africa, and soon, in other parts of the world. From Monday, July 01, 2013, viewers can sit back, relax and enjoy premium, engaging and compelling programming specifically produced for Global Black citizens of the world.

 

Steve Forbes for ELtv Launch, June 30th

Catch Mr. Steve Forbes live at the Launch of EbonyLife TV, Africa’s first Global Black Entertainment Network, holding on Sunday, June 30, 2013, at the Eko Hotel & Suites, Lagos, Nigeria. The distinguished Chairman and Editor-in-Chief of the renowned Forbes Media is the Keynote Speaker at the event which will be graced by the presence of some of Africa’s most influential dignitaries – including Presidents, Governors, Ministers, Technocrats, luminaries and captains of industries; as well as media, fashion, music, film and entertainment moguls.

 

Mo’s Search – Who will emerge as co-host?

The new season of Africa’s first and biggest daily talk show, Moments with Mo, is starting soon, exclusively on EbonyLife TV, Channel 165 on DStv. But who will be unveiled as the ideal new co-hosts to share the screen with Mo, Africa’s Queen of Talk, as they take on guests on the hallowed hot seat? Stay tuned.