As part of measures to expand the Microsoft Network (MSN) Portal to deliver locally relevant news that are tailored to address local users in Nigeria and Africans in diaspora. Devices and Services Company, Microsoft has partnered with Kagiso Media to officially unveil the MSN Nigeria Portal in Lagos. The launch had a line-up of different activities including a media conference and editorial roundtable session.
Speaking at the media conference, Microsoft’s Acting Country Manager, Awawu Olumide-Sojinrin said the MSN Nigeria portal features the trademark MSN homepage dedicated to Nigerian news, sports, lifestyle, entertainment and weather as well as links to other Microsoft-related services such as Bing, Outlook and Skype.
According to Justin Dewhirst, Area Executive Producer, CEE & MEA, Apps Media & Publishing Microsoft, “MSN is about bringing contents together in one portal and Kagiso has built the expertise for great experiences on the Windows operating system”.
He added “MSN is accessible on personal computers (PC), smartphones and feature phones. He reiterated that MSN Nigeria is a way to synchronize great people with great technology in the process of building a greater content experience.
The deal with Kagsio also sees Ad Dynamo providing contextual advertising on Microsoft’s network of sites, including Windows Live Hotmail with over 800,000 users in Nigeria and Windows Messenger with over 820,000 active users in Nigeria.”
During the demonstration of the portal, Dele Akinsade, Director Developer Platform Evangelist, West East and Central Africa Microsoft said that already, MSN Nigeria syndicates local news in Nigeria from the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN), as well as publishers such as BangShowbiz. “It also features dedicated pages for news (national, African and world news), sport (local and world sport news), entertainment (local and global celebrity entertainment news) and lifestyle (including fashion, travel, tech & gadgets, motoring).”
Also speaking, Marcus Stephens, General Manager- Publishing, Kagiso Media said Kagiso Media has been partnering with Microsoft since 2010 to share the vision for building communities with local talent content providers. “There is a growing hunger for localised content across Africa as undersea cables, mobile broadband and falling Internet access costs bring more people online. We aim to address this need with the same formula of locally relevant, easy to digest content that we offer our audience in South Africa,” he said.
At the interactive editorial roundtable, Microsoft and Kagiso Media rubbed minds with some of Nigeria’s finest bloggers sharing ideas on trends in blogging in Nigeria, local content, content consumption, messaging amongst others.
The bloggers lauded the initiative and expressed their desire for content in Pidgin English which according to them is a unifying language spoken by all. They also called for the incorporation of local expressions and other trends into the writing styles to spice up the portal with the Nigerian flavour.
The MSN Portal team appreciated contributions of the bloggers and also solicited their partnership in making the portal truly Nigerian.