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Up close and personal with Mr Andrew Enahoro

Mr Andrew Enahoro, Head Legal and Public Relations, Promasidor Nigeria speaks about the company’s plan to internationalise the Quill awards and CSR engagement.

What are you looking forward to in next year’s Quill Awards?

For the 2014 edition we have added two more categories for a total of seven and we intend to have an awesome award ceremony that will herald and announce the winners such that it will be appreciable and memorable. Also, we hope to execute a memorandum of understanding with an institution in the United Kingdom that will actually elevate the profile of the awards.

Serious consideration and plans are underway to have a champion of champions, among the winners of the seven categories created. The overall champion may most likely attend a rewarding programme in the UK under the auspices of the institution.

What are the criteria employed for selection of the award categories?

The criteria for selection of the various categories resulted from stakeholders’ engagement. Based on the suggestions we received we had quite a number of categories to consider. We however settled on our target market, which are our consumers and this is the Nigerian family.

How sustainable is your CSR Initiative?

When we started our CSR engagement, one of the things we did was to sit down and draw up a strategy, and this CSR strategy is what influences our engagements with the public. So if we have a thousand and one requests from the public for support, it must align with our strategy, which will be sustainable.

In our CSR strategy, we have broad categories of healthcare and nutrition, education, sports, empowerment and mentoring and good governance. In the education category, we have the Cowbell National Secondary Schools Mathematics Competition (NASSMAC) and it has been going on for 13 years. At the last count we had close to 40,000 entries for the exams. In sports we have an engagement with Para soccer, we have the Cowbell Football Academy and a host of others which are sustainable and that’s the only way we can actually manage our engagements with the public in terms of CSR initiatives.

Also, being a socially responsible company is not only about initiatives and engagements. We pride ourselves, for instance, on our carbon footprint reduction. For example, we now use gas generators instead of diesel generators as an alternative form of power and our extractor fans in the factories are wind-powered.

What are the benefits you derive from CSR?

When you engage a community in all these kind of initiatives, your joy or immediate return is never financial. For instance, our NASSMAC winner in 2006 actually graduated with 5.0 GPA in medical college in Russia this year, one of the boys also has authored a mathematics textbook. These actions alone are akin to winning a gold medal.

Now if I sit back and look at it professionally, the immediate benefit is that people get to know about Promasidor brands, but more importantly other corporates are challenged to not wait on the government, that if this company can come up with these initiatives, others can also emulate us and also introduce their unique initiatives to touch peoples’ lives in the community.

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