Hi, I'm Chude Jideonwo, cofounder of RED Media Africa. Ask Me Anything!


Certainly, being an outlier has never been a scalable model. And so we must step outside of Linda to find what works for being joining the market. This is a very long conversation but the Nigerian audience is defined by some major characteristics include a)laziness - we do not like complex choices, therefore first movers enjoy an almost complete advantage for domination b)what I call ‘Abeg Abeg’, which means they don’t want to go from one place to the next so they would rather remain with bad service or content c) despite what people put in their decks to foreign investors, brick and mortar issues like bad road networks, electricity, etc make the market actually very small. So all these businesses are fighting for the same small connected audiences


I always, always place my bet on people. And so I will always my bet in the following 3. 1. Thisday - Bevause Nduka Obaigbena will never run a brand that won’t win. 2. John Momoh - Bevause his mind is in constant motion, always innovating, almost iterating, always improving. 3. Silverbird - Bevause when you have survived 30 years in Nigeria, then you will never die.


Hi Mr @Chude

Nice to have you.

  1. What are your plans for RED in the near future if you can share? And another is, how do organise yourself, not to allow been overwhelmed?

  2. And you just talked about betting on people. Now it’s easy to bet on Nduka and John Momoh, they are well already. Beyond those, and looking at the new breed of entrepreneurs, who will you bet on, and what will you look for when you place your bets today?


Yes, when this is found, people are usually suspended or let go. Usually a very painful decision Bevause these are some of the best talent available. Now to something controversial: I am personally very forgiving of mistakes like thisbevause the media is presently in a state of flux. Concepts of ownership and value are fluid and therefore in this space, a new generation of writers not accustomed to the rules that have guided me since I started writing for TEMPO in 2003 do not understand. And probably for good reason. In the midst of this, new movements will be formed based on new rules. And I don’t mind those new rules. It’s the reason I am very forgiving of LIB, when people speak of infringement Bevause I understand that the rules as presently formed serve to benefit an establishment. We know for instance that the wanton use of Google images that all Nigerian sites engage in, including this one, runs foul of strict copyright laws in many jurisdictions, but strict interpretation will construct the rise of many new businesses that serve very important social and commercial functions. So in short, I am very understanding of young people who break rules. Yes, punish them, but understand that the whole foundation of innovation depends on both shifting concepts of what constitutes value and where possessive rights start and end, as well as the breaking or rules and testing the limits of same. Of course, many writers who have laws that enable their possessiveness won’t like what I say, but at least I have the credibility to needle them!: )


I never had any conviction to stop working for anyone. Actually I thought I was going to grow old working for New DWn with Funmi Iyanda! I thought I was going to be an employee - even five years after TFAA and our brands, I was stuck working for people. I worked at Virgin Nigeria and then NEXT after NYSC. I became an entrepreneur by accident. As an experiment, and only Bevause I was driven by a vision to impact a generation. I believe in the virtues of intra-preneurship. We need steady followers who lead founders and entrepreneurs towards greatness. Befause visions needs great implementers. Partnerships are incredible, but it solely depends on the success of the partner relationship. Bevause this is so hard to find I generally advise caution. I have been incredibly lucky to be blessed with a partner given by God. But in any case, anyone can succeed with any model, what’s more important are people to carry out the vision, a strong vision that continues to inspire, and back operations that help scale


Oh of course not! We have a vision to build a company that can reach 500million in one year across a minimum of 15 countries. We are building media platforms across countries and across platforms - TV, radio, online and maybe print in some of the country markets where that still exists. We tell ourselves we just began with an emboldened vision this year.


I completely share your concern. And it’s one our Strategy team is focused on working through, It’s prevalent Bevause we don’t yet have powerful media platforms that show an alternative path. People go where numbers are - that’s how it is with politics, media and faith. Those who understand like you do, that markets are more sophisticated than the mass mindlessness they assume will have to show this via data, via engagement etc. but it will take time, and thus it will require patience. Tech Cabal and Zikoko for instance are on that path. My people at YNaija and those at PartyJollof are focused on curating these audiences. It will take time, but it will happen. And we have to be ready for when that wave comes. Don’t forget it was a battle to even get these advertises online in the first place. I remember showing Linda at the PH Airport in 2009 how to do her rate cards. So the first stage of the battle has just been won, and we should be grateful for that. While we prepare for the next stage.


Hi @Chude are you behind the recent banner change on the TechCabal home page?

On a more serious note does Red Media have a CTO? If so, what are some of the challenges he/she has faced and how have they been addressed so far?


Thanks, is there a difference between being restlessness and being stubborn or blind? how have you dealt with people who claim to know how to help you grow your business more than you do?

Secondly do you have a defined CSR initiative or engagement process. I would like to work with you on a healthcare project that need to use media to change perspective critically.


Haha Thanks much for the kind words. On the subject of telling African stories to the world, generally I am not interested in that. China doesn’t have a groundswell of media companies doing that. What they have is a strong county and that sells itself. Same with Rwanda. We are focused at RED on telling African stories to Africans. First, Nigerians, then West Africans, then the continent. We believe that when you inspire people, and that inspired generation rises, then it will tell its own story through action, through achievement, through a transformed country. That’s our media mission


Micro target. Micro target. Micro target!strong text


I have failed, certainly:) you can’t take the kind of big risks we have and not be ready for That! One of my biggest failures would be my inability to fight against the tides in having a print magazine brand. We struggled against distributors, vendors, printers, everyone. But we couldn’t defeat those obstacles, and eventually we had to mKe a decision to exit that space. As someone who loves magazines, that was deeply sad. Quitting? To be honest I haven’t thought of quitting In a long while because God has been faithful, but I remember last year during the administration of GEJ. We made a stand as a business to align ourselves with demands for the release of the kidnapped Chibok girls. We lost many of our professional business relationships because of that. It didn’t make me think of quitting but it made me so frustrated. So frustrated. To the point of tears perhaps. Because you just wonder if it’s worth it to run an enterprise with a moral compass. But yeah those times comes and then you keep moving,strong text


I think maybe when I was in school and I watched Funmi Itanda on TV for the first time. she was so orihinal and so… Impactful. I wanted to build a company that touched hearts and mind just like she did.
What kept me going… Infrastructure? In Nigeria? LOL. This was 2004. Nigeria was a vastly different place. It’s difficult now. Imagine how incredibly difficult it was then. What Helped me? Role models! I looked at Levi Ajuonuma, and Funmi and Mo Abudu and saw what they created and I wanted to create something special. I always talk about ‘access to stories’. I didn’t have access to funds, access to markets, access to all that good stuff, what I had was access to stories that made me know it was possible and showed a pathway to success.


Haha. It would certainly be YNaija. I love that Internet newspaper and don’t think it has scratched even the surface. The idea of daily shaping conversation, shaping narratives being in the mix of things really gets my heart pumping. I miss 2012 when Bankole and I spent mornings and nights just going at it during Occupy Nigeria. Sometimes I wish I wasn’t a CEO and could just do what I truly love doing - with that brand!:frowning:


I am probably late to the party, I read through but no one asked this, " is Red media a gun for hire ? Do her business swing with a moral compass? Will it take a job, work and be the media mouthpiece for say James Ibori if he somehow runs for the President of Nigeria?
God bless your hustle


The answer is self evident really: we made a business decision to piss off our friends and government and stand firmly with #BringBackOurGirls, costing us business and friends in high places. Given a choice between working with the GEJ well funded incumbent campaign and the Spartan operation of GMB, the world knows what we chose. We make a very dangerous decision each time to do business with a moral compass. May God give us the grace to continue.strong text


Not being overwhelmed is something I have just started learning, in humility and with prayer. I am basically not a chilled out guy, the word people most associate with me is ‘pressure cooker’. But over the past few months as we turned 10, I have consciously and deliberately began to be conscious about pacing myself - by trusting people significantly more (a weakness previously), by managing emails on
Y twice a day, by a strictly followed schedule and by creating time for myself, especially time to think.
I will bet on Big Cabal media, and not just because I am here. They know exactly what matters, and appear to have the wisdom to make it happen. I will bet on Andela’s Iyin Aboyeji - again because of wisdom, perspective and an eye on the long term.


Can I be honest with you? We have just this year begun to revamp our entire Tech operations. Mostly because over the past few years we have been trying to figure out what kind of business we are and what works. We have just finally brought some calm to our operations and entered a long term partnership arrangement that has brought in CTO-level competence to our operations while rebuilding a sustainable operation from ground up. Not easy! strong text


Good morning. Boss CJ I sent you a mail @Quiffic…My Question goes thus! what traction has Red media implemented or is implementing in Giving back to the Tech community to Start ups in facilitating the marketing structure of their product


This answer is something worth repeating over and over.