MTN Launches 2017 ‘MTN Women In Business Awards’


By John Nanyumba


For the fifth year, MTN Business has yet again launched the ‘MTN Women in Business Awards’ for 2017.

This year’s awards will be hosted at Serena hotel under the theme: Survival of the fittest: Partnering for success

According to the MTN marketing, Sheila Najjita, the awards will take place on March 18. “The awards are in honor of women and specifically those engaged in small to medium business. MTN will be joining the rest of the world to celebrate International Women’s day,” Najjita told Red Pepper. She added, “These awards celebrate the achievements of Ugandan women entrepreneurs who against all odds continue to excel in the predominantly male dominated field of business.”

Najjita however noted that MTN will host the awards night on Friday March 17. The night will also feature a panel discussion and a key note speech delivered by Dr. Judy Dlamini, a successful South African female entrepreneur who is behind the Mbekani Group of businesses.

In addition, the awards season will feature a free Master Class covering a range of topics like SME Financing, Corporate Governance, Marketing and others.

In this 5th edition, a special Survivor of the Year Award will be presented to a female owned business that has shown resilience in the face of tough economic times said.

Najjita told Red Pepper that preceding the dinner night, MTN together with partners like CNBC & Forbes Africa, Stanbic Bank, Serena Hotels, Huawei, UAP Insurance and others, will host a Master Class on Friday March 3 at the Protea Hotel.

Speaking about this new feature in the awards season, the MTN Chief Marketing Officer, Mrs. Mapula Bodibe commented that, “This day of education and networking seeks to further empower women with various skills in areas like Financing, Corporate Governance, Planning and Marketing among others”. The day long class will be facilitated by leading professionals and organizations with expertise in their respective areas of trade like Charles Ocici-CEO, Enterprise Uganda, Ruth Sebatindira-Founding Partner, Ligomarc Advocates, Cedric Mpobusingye-Country Partner PwC Uganda and digital marketing experts, Zimba Women among others.

Najjita noted that participating individuals and organizations will each be recognized with a Certificate of Participation. “Those individual and companies interested in participating can register online at www.tiny.cc/wib17on a first come; first service basis. Then on Saturday 11th March 2017, at the Shoprite Lugogo parking yard, MTN Business will facilitate a trade expo that will feature women owned businesses making their mark in Uganda,” Najjita added.

Talking to Red Pepper, Reginald Kafeero, the General Manager MTN Business said that, “We believe that the expo is a great opportunity for participating businesses to market themselves and reach out to new and wider audiences.”

The MTN Women in Business Awards have over the years become the most recognizable platform celebrating upcoming and successful women entrepreneurs in Uganda. “MTN through its MTN Business division is proud to be championing what we believe is an area that holds great potential in realizing the fortunes of a huge segment of our population”, noted Bodibe.

The award categories on the night will include: MTN Women In Business Excellence in ICT Award, MTN Women In Business Excellence in Financial Services Award, MTN Women In Business: People’s Choice (Survivor of the Year), MTN Women In Business CEO Of The Year.

In all award categories, the 2nd and 1st runner up and the eventual category winners will be recognized with an award and prizes to be announced on the night.

Najjita assured the public and participants that the winners will be selected by a panel of distinguished judges who are industry captains in their respective fields of business. The judges will include; Merian Sebunya–Board Member of Private Sector Foundation Uganda and The East African Business Council, Jennifer Mwijukye-Managing Director–Unifreight Group, Maggie Kigozi-President, Business Professional Women, Rita Balaka-Head of Compliance, Stanbic Bank Uganda and Sophia Mukasa-Senior Manager Enterprise, MTN Business.

To deliberate on what it takes to survive in business as a Ugandan female entrepreneur, the panel will comprise among others, ladies with experience like; Jackie Namara Rukare-seasoned lady marketer, Barbara Ofwono-founder and proprietor, Victorious Education, Elizabeth Ntege-Director, NFT Consult, Caroline Mboijana-Founder & Managing Director, The Leadership Team and Bodibe

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