*Says Nigeria remains an exciting destination for business in Africa
By Yinka Ajayi
Tyler Husby is the Project Manager at Daktronics, a designing and manufacturing electronic scoreboards, programmable display systems and large screen video displays. In this interview, he shares his company’s focus on LED boards and why they are partnering Optimum Exposures on the largest digital billboard in Sub-Saharan Africa, the Elephant, in Lagos, among other things.
How would you describe the trends in digital billboards across the world?
Daktronics’ earliest products were an electronic vote tabulating system and a portable wrestling scoreboard. Over time we branched out to become the world-wide market leader in LED signs including scoreboards, message displays, highway displays, on-premise signs and digital billboards. In 2001 we produced our first digital billboard and in 2004 digital billboards started to take off world-wide.
Amid the social and economic challenges in Nigeria, what made it attractive?
We noticed that the Nigerian market was being receptive to digital technology and starting to experiment with it. We have helped many organisations and communities implement digital technology successfully and we continue to look for opportunities to get new markets up and running, so we noticed that the Nigerian market was ready for digital billboards.
We are committed to the success of digital out of home business. We have been since the beginning. The success and growth of our business is directly related to the success of our customers’ businesses. We have been evolving our digital billboard product line for 15 years and have developed the most reliable, high-quality product with the best image quality available today. We want digital technology to be received well, operated correctly and used to its fullest potential, which explains why we partner not just supply technology to businesses. That’s why we are in Nigeria working with organisations like Optimum Exposures on the digital Elephant Board, that would be the largest of its kind in sub-Saharan Africa. We are optimistic it is going to have massive impact on the industry in Nigeria.
We notice you are busy reinventing the Elephant. What are you up to at this time?
We already pointed out that the Nigerian market appears ready for digital boards, hence the need to reinvent the Elephant. We are upgrading the board to be fully interactive and engaging with brands, consumers and prospects on all social media platforms. So we hope it gets the expected level of excitement from the people. It will also have the capacity to render social services, like time and news breaks on happenings in the city in addition to helping brands catch eyeballs and engage the public in an exciting manner.
Why should brands crave to be at the Elephant board?
It is an iconic landmark with superior technology that accurately projects brands and gets them noticed in the bid to wind mind-share, love and patronage. This display will allow advertisers to take their brands to a new level, particularly with the option for real-time content and engagement. our software allows the operator to provide reporting information back to the advertiser, which is challenging to get through other methods of advertising. It’s like being on the cover of the Rolling Stone.
What does it offer the public and consumers?
Versatility and flexibility! From versatility, our digital billboards provide advertising and real time information to the community. With the ability to run data feeds, the possibilities for advertisers are endless – from real time sports scores, social media, weather, time sensitive campaigns and brand offerings. On flexibility, advertisers have the ability to change content at a moment’s notice. The content on the display allows consumers to receive relevant, timely information like they are accustomed to in their daily lives via cell phones, social media and much more.
What convinces you that the Nigerian populace is ready for this level of innovation?
We are already seeing the implementation of digital technology in Nigeria. We are committed to helping outdoor companies choose a successful product that will represent their company and their clients well overtime, not just in the short term. By providing digital technology that is innovative and performs well, we can ensure that digital advertising is well received. Consumers are demanding information and advertising that is relevant and timely, digital billboards allow for both.
You are a B2B business in Nigeria. Who are you partnering with on digital billboards in this market and why?
Our objective is to help boost the Nigerian economy through the industry in which we play, the Out Of Home OOH. Our current project, is being executed in partnership with Optimum Exposures. Our decision to partner with them is based on their readiness to deploy top notch boards like the iconic Elephant. We are partnering with them because we are convinced that the innovation will boost the industry and the Nigerian economy.
What should Nigerians expect from this partnership?
We are vested in our partner’s success, it’s a long-term relationship. It will be sustained because we have dedicated out of home team that assists outdoor companies in getting started in digital, choose the right product and then continues to provide training and knowledge after the installation. Our team will be available to ensure that stakeholders, particularly patronising brands, continually get good value for investing in the Elephant.
In your business segment, what’s the global perception of Nigeria?
Available statistics show that Nigeria has Africa’s largest population with a large concentration of them being youthful. The stability of civil rule is also something that the world is pleased to witness in Nigeria, particularly with the current administration showing some resolve to deal with issues of corruption. However, the challenges of infrastructure, power supply and security threats are also there.
To what extent are you guided by this perception?
We know that Africa is the next destination for businesses and Nigeria remains an exciting destination for business in Africa. So we are guided by this in making efforts to get quality partners that can sustain our standard. Once, we find such we venture with optimism.