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March 2015

Airtel Uganda Launches Dedicated Football Website.

Airtel Uganda, the leading telecommunications company in Uganda, has today launched a football website to enable all subscribers have access to the latest football content on both the local and international scene. The site was launched at the Company’s offices on Clemet Hill.

This comes a few months after the National Football team’s sponsor reinforced its commitment to the Uganda Cranes and to FUFA at a press conference held during the FUFA Stakeholders’ Football Symposium in January this year.

The newly launched Airtel football website is going to enable customers to get both local and international football content on their data capable devices at no charge.

According to Mr. Prasoon Lal, the Airtel Uganda Marketing Director, “Football is a big part of Airtel Uganda. We have decided to launch a portal to ensure that all our customers can have absolutely free access to free football news, fixtures, live scores and other football-related information. Visitors to the site only need to have data on their mobile phones in order o access this website.”

“By simply visiting www.airtelfootball.ug, football lovers in this country will be opened to a rich football experience.” Lal added.

Lal also noted that the mobile friendly website will allow easy navigation for users.

The Airtel football website has up-to-date information about the Uganda national team, club football matches, results, a gallery of photos as well as information on Women football and the Airtel Rising Stars initiative. The site also has a discussion forum where visitors can talk football with fellow enthusiasts.

Emirates ups Wi-FI connection on over 100 aircrafts.

Emirates now offers free* Wi-Fi on 106 of its aircraft, with two to three more aircraft being installed with Wi-Fi connectivity every month. After updating the service in early February with a simpler sign-on process on top of other software updates, Emirates has seen a further 25% increase in uptake.

Emirates continues to invest over US$20 million annually on installing and operating inflight connectivity systems which enable onboard Wi-Fi services. On Emirates’ ultra long-haul flights (over 14 hours), over 30% of passengers typically use Wi-Fi services, and on a recent flight to New York, 66% of passengers used onboard Wi-Fi.

Currently, Wi-Fi service is available on all of Emirates’ 59 Airbus A380 aircraft and 47 of its Boeing 777 aircraft. On over 60% of the installed fleet, *the first 10MB data is free – sufficient for an update on social media accounts or texting via instant messaging apps. Thereafter, and for the rest of the fleet, users can enjoy 500MB of data for a token $US 1 charge. By giving either free access or charging a token amount since last October, Emirates has seen a near fivefold increase in usage.

Besides offering Wi-Fi connectivity on all A380 flights, Emirates is in the process of converting all of its Boeing 777-300ERs and 777-200LRs to become Wi-Fi ready at the rate of two-to-three aircraft per month.

“As a global connector of people and places, Emirates is committed to making our entire fleet Wi-Fi enabled. Customers seek free Wi-Fi on-the-go, especially while travelling, and it is becoming the norm for most people who want to stay connected through online social networks and instant messaging. Emirates is subsidising or waiving the high cost of buying data to serve our passengers on routes across six continents. We foresee that free Wi-Fi onboard is the future standard for all our customers, something that will require no charge or limitations,” says Patrick Brannelly, Divisional Vice President for Customer Experience (Inflight Entertainment & Connectivity).

Due to current industrial technical limitations such as speed and bandwidth availability and the lack of advanced hardware and software support, the small token charge for additional data usage is required to keep the Wi-Fi service operational.

In 2014, about 650,000 customers used Emirates’ Wi-Fi service on board and as of early March this year, more than 350,000 customers have already used the service.

According to the airline’s data, the websites its passengers most frequently access onboard include Facebook and Google, and chat services such as Skype and WhatsApp, reflecting travellers’ strong desire to stay connected on the move and their use of social media channels to do so.

Passengers on board Emirates also have other ways to stay connected with personal mobile phones services offered on over 75% of the fleet, and in-seat email, telephone and SMS services on every aircraft. All of Emirates’ 37 dedicated airport lounges around its global network, offer complimentary Wi-Fi connectivity.

*The first 10MB data is free. Users can enjoy additional 500MB of data for a token $US 1 charge.

Nabweru-Based Dj’s Dream to be accomplished Courtesy Of Lumia’s #MakeitHappenEA Campaign.

Alan Onoba from Nabweru is the first Ugandan winner in the ongoing #MakeitHappenEA and will get a chance to fulfill his dream as one of Kampala’s top deejays someday courtesy of Microsoft Mobile Devices that will be paying his tuition to study in the Platinum DJs academy. In addition to this Alan also received a Dell Laptop and monster headphones to further facilitate his dream in being a DJ.

Launched in February2015, the #MakeItHappenEA aims to empower customers to share their life long desires, and 4 lucky winners will be selected and get a rare opportunity of bring their dream to life.

The main prize is only two weeks away as one lucky consumers stands a chance to win a life changing all expenses paid Experience with friends to Cape Town, South Africa courtesy of Lumia.

To participate, buy any Lumia device*, and go to the link:  https://w.lumialiving.com/%28X%281%29S%28ffubsvln5petip351ptrb0bc%29%29/index.do?ix=59983&AspxAutoDetectCookieSupport=1 to register and share your dream!

Winners will be announced on the official Microsoft Lumia social media pages and will be contacted by the Microsoft team to plan how to bring their dream to reality! To learn more about the campaign, follow the #MakeItHappenEA conversations on:

Emirates Opens a Dedicated Lounge at Los Angeles International Airport.

Emirates, a global connector of people and places, today celebrated the opening of its 37th dedicated lounge for First Class and Business Class customers as well as Platinum and Gold members of Emirates Skywards, the airline’s frequent flyer program, at Los Angeles International Airport.

The Emirates Lounge at Los Angeles International Airport represents a USD6.2 million investment on the part of the airline, to provide an experience of seamless luxury and comfort to its premium customers.

As the second largest airport in the United States in the second largest metropolitan area in America, the Emirates Lounge at Los Angeles International Airport offers Emirates’ premium services even before customers step on board. The décor in the dedicated Emirates Lounge provides a seamless transition to the elegant environment of the onboard First Class and Business Class offering with a colour palette reflecting the neutral, earthy tones that customers have come to associate with the Emirates brand.

The grand opening was marked by a ribbon-cutting ceremony that included Mohammed Mattar, Emirates’ Divisional Senior Vice President Airport Services, and Barry Rondinella – Director of Operations from Los Angeles World Airports (LAWA).

“Our third dedicated airport lounge in the US underpins our commitment to providing our premium customers with a great travel experience, and delivering on the high standards they have come to expect from Emirates. A nod to the Golden Age of air travel, the new lounge design is inspired by the understated luxury of our lounges in Dubai’s Concourse A, and is reflective of the discerning tastes of our premium customers”, said Mohammed H. Mattar, Emirates’ Divisional Senior Vice President – Airport Services.

“We pay great attention to detail, from the on-ground experience, to the onboard product and service. Before they even board the plane, premium customers enjoy exclusive chauffeur drive service, dedicated airport check-in counters, and luxurious lounge facilities – this is part of our philosophy, to deliver uncompromised quality”, added Mr. Mattar.

The airline started flying to Los Angeles in 2008 with a Boeing 777-200LR. In December 2013, Emirates introduced the 490 seat Airbus A380, powered by US made GE GP7200 engines, a direct response to demand – with over one million Emirates’ customers travelling between Los Angeles and Dubai to date. Passenger traffic at LAX is over 70 million serving the Pacific Region, Asia, Europe, Middle East, Africa, and India, all of which are destinations in Emirates’ global network which spans six continents.

“Working together, Emirates and LAX partnered to provide and then create a space where travellers can experience a world-class dedicated First Class and Business Class Lounge,” said Gina Marie Lindsey, Executive Director, Los Angeles World Airports. “I congratulate Emirates on conceiving, constructing and offering an unforgettable experience that gives passengers both luxury and comfort.”

Located in the Tom Bradley International Terminal, the new Emirates Lounge offers seating for up to 157 customers covering an area of 840 square meters. The fresh design has the same attention to detail as the other Emirates’ lounges throughout the world, where guests can enjoy an array of luxurious facilities and amenities that include a terrace view, LED TVs, comfortable leather armchairs, a choice of formal and relaxed seating, a dining area featuring a range of global cuisines, shower facilities, business centre, and bespoke artwork.

First Class and Business Class customers can also take advantage of an exclusive private Chauffeur-drive service to Los Angeles International Airport, a service that extends up to 60 miles from the airport.

The Emirates Lounge:

  • Can be availed by Emirates First Class and Business Class customers as well as Skywards Platinum and Gold members.
  • Offers its guests an extensive open buffet of gourmet dishes from both the United States and around the world, as well as a complimentary full-bar service including premium wine, spirits and champagne
  • Offers services including; a fully equipped business centre with complimentary Wi-Fi connection across the lounge area, TV and reading areas, shower facilities and a prayer room
  • Offering seating for 157 customers with an area of 840 square meters with duty free shopping views.
  • Elegant architectural features & finishes, stylish interior spaces, timber trellis work, bespoke furniture; all form a seamless part of our In-house designing efforts
  • Furnished with Italian marble floors, Gold Rolex clocks, leather armchairs and Walnut wood finish, in line with the worldwide Emirates quality standards.
  • With the opening of the new Lounge in Los Angeles, Emirates now operates 37 dedicated lounges around its six-continent network including lounges in Auckland, Bangkok, Beijing, Birmingham, Brisbane, five lounges in Dubai, Colombo, Delhi, Dusseldorf, Frankfurt, Glasgow, Hamburg, Hong Kong, Istanbul, Johannesburg, Kuala Lumpur, London Gatwick, London Heathrow, Manchester, Milan. Munich, Melbourne, Mumbai, New York – JFK, Paris – Charles de Gaulle, Perth, Rome, San Francisco, Singapore, Sydney, Shanghai and Zurich.

Ugandan travelers can fly daily to Los Angeles through Dubai. Emirates provides a daily flight from Entebbe to Dubai that connects to Los Angeles.

 

Sandra Suubi heads to Nairobi for the Airtel Trace Star Music Competition.

With more than 2.3 million calls made by music enthusiasts who wanted to become stars, Airtel TRACE Music Star is by far the biggest music competition to ever take place on the African continent.

During a 6-month-selection process in Uganda, Kenya, Tanzania, Zambia, Madagascar, Malawi, Nigeria, Ghana, Burkina Faso, Chad, Congo Brazzaville, The Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC) and Gabon, tens of thousands candidates had to demonstrate their skills and talent in their native land. To enter the competition, the contestants called an Interactive Voice Respond system with their phone and recorded their songs. Then, in each country, TRACE selected 5 finalists who went head-to-head to win the national title and the right to represent their country at the pan-African finale in Kenya.

The winner of the Airtel TRACE Music Star competition will be crowned in a spectacular pan-African Grande Finale filmed at Enashipai Resort & Spa on March 28 and will be televised starting on April 18 at 8pm all over Africa on TRACE music channels and national leading Free to Air TV networks.

Final decision to select the pan-African winner will be made by public vote and 3 judges:

  1. Akon, the multi-platinum artist/producer and the most African of the American artists
  2. Devyne Stephens, the acclaimed manager of some of the best rap and R&B artists in the world (Alicia Keys, 50 Cent, P Diddy, Mariah Carey etc.)
  3. Lynnsha, the multi-platinum artist from the French Caribbean

Judges will each retain twenty five percent voting power, leaving the public with an additional twenty five percent leverage. Public voting polls are open until March 25.

You can vote for your favorite finalist by sending an SMS to the short code dedicated to their country, along with their key word.  For Example to vote Sandra Sssubi Uganda’s winner, SMS SANDRA send to 162

The finale will be hosted by Capso and Wanjira Longauer.

The overall grand prize comprises of a record deal, promotion and mentorship campaigns for a total value that exceeds $500,000.

Photos: The Airtel National BAsketball League Awards.

Airtel Uganda, the largest sponsor of the Uganda National Basketball League, awarded different basketball players for their contribution towards Ugandan basketball in 2014 at the Airtel National Basketball League Awards dinner held on Saturday night at Sheraton Hotel, Rwenzori Ballroom in Kampala.

These awards are an annual event held annually after every league season and national team duty in order to recognize all the outstanding players in Division 1, Division 2, the main league as well as the national team players who played in the Zone 5 tournament. These awards also strengthen the partnership between Airtel Uganda and the Federation of Uganda Basketball Associations (FUBA) which was conceived in 2012 when FUBA opened a new chapter in the Men and Women’s Basketball League by unveiling the “National Basketball League”.

Airtel Uganda’s continued Commitment to Education.

Pupils of Sseke Primary School in Masaka district have received a new lease on their education after Airtel Uganda fulfilled its pledge to refurbish their school under its “Adopt-A-School” program. The official opening of the refurbished school was presided over by the Vice President of Uganda, His Excellency Edward Ssekandi.

BEFORE

Adopt-A-School is an initiative in which Airtel Uganda; under the guidance of the Ministry of Education and Sports selects or, “adopts” a school, and goes on to improve all of its facilities including classrooms and libraries. This program ensures access to quality education for underprivileged children from disadvantaged communities, in an effort to contribute to the overall development of the country. At present, this program, across Africa and India, has changed the face of education in over 300 schools.

AFTER

Speaking at the hand-over ceremony, Airtel Uganda Managing Director, Mr. Tom Gutjahr urged the both the students and, teaching staff to fully utilize the opportunity presented to them.

“Airtel Uganda believes that quality education the most important tool for social–economic development of Uganda. Education is a vital weapon in the fight against poverty. By adopting a school we are igniting the curiosity of the students and at the same time fueling their learning,” he said.

The Guest of Honor and Vice President of Uganda, His Excellency Edward Ssekandi commended Airtel Uganda supporting Ugandan communities in different rural areas. “I would like to commend Airtel Uganda for partnering with the Ministry of Education and Sports as well as the local community to provide educational opportunities for less privileged children in Uganda,” he said.

“I call upon the students of Sseke Primary School to utilize these facilities well. It is through education that you shall get jobs and improve your livelihoods, your community, and eventually our entire country,” he added.

Sseke Primary School is the fourth school to be adopted by Airtel Uganda and permanently remains a member of the Airtel Uganda family.

Other schools that have been adopted by Airtel Uganda – Ndeeba Church of Uganda Primary School in Kayunga, St. Ponsiano Kyamula Primary in Makindye and Nanfugaki Primary school in Jinja- have undergone extensive work to renovate and help improve the conditions of their student body.

Airtel Uganda donates 500 ‘MAMA kits’ to mothers in Eastern Uganda.

Airtel Uganda extended its Happiness Campaign to Eastern Uganda by donating MAMA kits to pregnant women in Bugiri district and surrounding areas. The handover of the kits was presided over by the Member of Parliament for Bukoli North Constituency, Honorable Baka Stephen Mugabi.

Also in attendance were community leaders, Bugiri residents and Airtel Uganda employees.

The telecommunications company partnered with the World Health Organisation, Maristopes clinics and local health centers to ensure that the 500 MAMA kits donated would be distributed to those pregnant women in need, free of charge.

Addressing guests at the handover ceremony, Airtel Uganda’s Human Resources’ Director, Mrs. Flavia Ntambi Lwanga, Human Resources Director said the Company was honored to play its part in the advocacy for safe motherhood and family health care.

“2015 is the year in which Airtel Uganda is actively seeking ways to promote the happiness of our customers, countrywide. We want to help our subscribers meet their needs, whatever they may be. These kits will help 500 mothers in Bugiri district with both their personal and family and health needs,” she said.

“In a country with a maternal mortality rate estimated at 505/100,000 live births, we have a responsibility to bring change in our areas of operation and eventually, reduce the deaths of mothers by ensuring clean and safe birthing conditions,” Ntambi added.

Ntambi also thanked the partners for their contribution to the initiative. “We are honored to be working with credible and efficient partners; the World Health Organisation (WHO) and Maristopes Clinic; both of whom are dedicated to ensuring an improvement in the health sector of Ugandans countrywide,” she said.

The Guest of Honor, Honorable Baka Mugabi commended Airtel Uganda and its partners for what he called “…a noble and worthwhile cause.”

“We cannot think of a better way to approach the celebration of this year’s International Women’s Day in Bugiri district. Airtel Uganda has today given hope to 500 mothers and essentially, stopped them from becoming part of the sad statistics,”
he said.

This initiative comes only a few weeks after Airtel Uganda held a community health fair in Arua district in Northern Uganda where medical services were extended to over 1000 people.

Bugiri district is a rapidly growing metropolitan area in Eastern Uganda located approximately 77 kilometers by road, east of Jinja, on the highway between Jinja and Tororo. It lies on the main highway between Uganda’s capital, Kampala, and the border towns of Malaba and Busia. In 2012 the population of Bugiri District was estimated at approximately 426,800 persons.

Photos: Tiwa Savage in Airtel All Women Concert.

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Airtel Uganda thrilled music fans in Uganda with a Women’s day concert that was headlined by top Nigerian artist Tiwa Savage. The concert which was held at Kati-Kati Grounds, Lugogo also featured a lineup of top female artistes including; Rema, Irene Ntale, Cindy, Sheebah, Keko, Lillian Mbabazi as well as Airtel Uganda Trace Music Star winner Sandra Suubi.

Airtel Uganda has become associated to Women’s Day celebrations in Uganda. In 2014, the telecom company sponsored the “Ugandan Women of Substance” 2014 Awards ceremony that featured Jamaican artist Nyanda as the main act.

According to Airtel Uganda Brand Assets and Properties Manager, Noella Byuma, “Airtel Uganda realizes the importance of the woman in everyone’s life. By being part of this concert, Airtel Uganda joined the rest of the world to pay respect to the women who have in one way or another, positively influenced our lives.”

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