-       Keke Ogungbe, Kola Oyeyemi, Amaka Igwe, Iyiola Ayoade confirmed speakers

-       Panelists to include: Audu Maikori, Ayo Animashaun, Nse Ikpe-Etim, Kunle Afolayan, DJ Jimmy JATT, Steve Babaeko, Ibinabo Fiberesima, Tolu Ogunlesi, others.

NET Newspapers LTD, publishers of Nigerian Entertainment Today have announced the inauguration of an annual umbrella conference for the Nigerian entertainment industry.

The conference, which will debut on Friday April 26, 2012, ‘is an invaluable initiative needed at this critical time in our industry, to steer the different sectors and associated elements, in the appropriate direction’, according toNET founder Ayeni Adekunle.

Nigerian Entertainment Conference, Ayeni says, will cover all the sectors associated with the entertainment industry. These include Fashion, Music, Movies/Films, and Media. Others are Sports, Arts, IT, Comedy and Events.

‘The conversation has been on for years, conversations about the way forward for the art and business of entertainment in Nigeria. And, since NET was established three years ago, we’ve been at the forefront of efforts to get the conversation going.  Now, it’s time to bring everyone together so we can begin an active process of re-organisation’.

According to statement issued today, NET is working with partners in the media, government, corporates, music, movies and elsewhere to make sure the conference delivers its promise.

To hold at the Eko Hotel and Suites, the first-of-its-kind conference, Ayeni says, will feature sessions on Nollywood, Music, Media, and more, as well as the inaugural NET Honours to reward distinguished practitioners.

The theme of the conference is ‘building the industry of our dreams’.

‘The Nigerian entertainment industry has shown its capacity – if we’ve been able to generate billions of dollars without any visible structures or government support, then imagine what would happen if we’re able to put our house in order? And I say ‘put our house in order’ because no one will do it for us. Not the government, not the ‘corporates’. If it’s ever going to happen, then practitioners will have to be the ones to spearhead it. And it all starts with this conversation’.

As the entertainment business the world over continues to see rapid, shocking changes, with the future of the industry increasingly relying on information technology and new ideas, NET says it’s bringing practitioners in Nigeria together, to ‘study the global trend, understand it, master it, and put it to use – for the benefit of practitioners, consumers, corporates and society’.

Confirmed speakers include Kennis founder and CEO Keke Ogungbe, iconic writer and director Amaka Igwe, GM Consumer Marketing MTN Nigeria Kola Oyeyemi, and Charterhouse Ghana founder Iyiola Ayoade; while the likes of star actress Nse Ikpe-Etim, Headies founder Ayo Animashaun, filmmaker Kunle Afolayan,comedian Tee A, singer-songwriter Darey, advertising whiz kid Steve Babaeko, recording artiste Weird MC,the iconic DJ Jimmy JATT, National Mirror MD Steve Ayorinde, new media expert Elo Umeh, writer Tolu Ogunlesi, AGN president Ibinabo Fiberesima and Chocolate City president Audu Maikori will serve on different panels. More speakers and panelists will be announced.

The Nigerian Entertainment Conference will kick off activities for the third anniversary of NET, Nigeria’s leading entertainment newspaper which was founded on April 26, 2010.

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