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July 2015

Airtel showcases latest Airtel Money innovation at this year’s Rwanda Expo.

Leading internet service provider Airtel Rwanda, is participating in the 18th Rwanda International Trade Fair. In partnership with the Private Sector Federation and the Ministry of Trade and Industry, Airtel is showcasing its products and devices at the expo.

The 2015 Rwanda expo has opened by Rwanda’s Prime Minister, Anastase Murekezi in Kigali at Gikondo Expo Grounds and will run from the 29th July to 12th August, 2015. Under the theme; ‘Don’t be left out’, the expo will give entrepreneurs an opportunity to showcase, Discover and Network with fellow entrepreneurs from other African countries. With over 200 local businesses registered and more than 100 foreign exhibitors, the expo will provide Rwandans a chance to experience quality and affordable products and services.

Rwanda's Prime Minister, Anastase Murekezi opening the Rwanda 2015 Expo

At this year’s expo, Airtel Rwanda has stood out from its competitors with their latest innovation with Airtel Money, the Kozaho card. The tap and pay card is powered by the Near Field Communication (NFC) technology and offers a new wave of convenience and faster payment option for the customers and traders.

Commenting on the Expo and the contribution Airtel has made towards the success of the Expo, Jean Paul Kwizera an attendee, applauded the way Airtel had set up its stall to showcase their products and was delighted by the latest Airtel Money innovations.

“We are showcasing the best devices and services and they are all at very affordable prices. During this year’s expo, you will see the difference between Airtel’s products and those of our competitors. Among the devices and services we are showcasing, we have; Airtel 4G and 3G devices and data, Airtel Money, Airtel Internet and many more services. But, we have an innovation that we would like everyone to try out. Our Kozaho card that one can use to make quick transactions with Airtel Money is on display.” Said the Airtel Rwanda Marketing Director, Mr. Indrajeet Singh.

Speaking about this year expo, Airtel Rwanda Managing Director, Mr. Teddy Bhullar said; “Airtel Rwanda is proud to be part of this year’s expo. The expo gives a big stage to businesses to showcase their products and services. We have transformed the way telecommunication is done in Rwanda and all over the world. In Rwanda, we have led the industry with innovations that have been welcomed and are being used to ease business practices and our day to day lifestyle.”

Emirates bids farewell to its last Boeing 777-200.

Emirates, a global connector of people, places and economies is pursuing an aggressive fleet renewal programme that ensures it operates one of the world’s most modern and efficient fleet of aircraft, with an average age of less than 75 months.

With Emirates taking delivery of 24 new aircraft in 2014/15 and 26 new aircraft planned to enter service this year, retiring older aircraft helps Emirates operate one of the youngest fleets in the skies today. Emirates currently operates 234 all wide-body aircraft, across six aircraft types. It is also the world’s largest operator of the Airbus A380 and Boeing 777 aircraft.

“Our modern and efficient aircraft not only help reduce environmental impact, but also enable Emirates to offer the latest facilities and provide our customers with a better onboard experience as well as the capacity we need to grow our operation. Our investment in modern wide-bodied aircraft has always been the cornerstone of our strategy and success,” said Adel Al Redha, Executive Vice President and Chief Operations Officer, Emirates.

With seven aircraft phased out in 2014 and another 10 planned for retirement this year, the Emirates Aircraft Assets team of 35 employees in coordination with other teams are busy around the clock managing the retirement of older Emirates aircraft. This not only includes a significant amount of paperwork and administrative tasks, but also involves returning the aircraft in a similar physical condition to when it was received.

Emirates recently phased out A6-EMF, the last remaining Boeing 777-200 from its fleet. The aircraft departed from Dubai International to Arizona via Boston for de-registration on 14 July. Since joining the Emirates fleet in 1996, A6-EMF flew an estimated 60 million kilometers (enough to fly to the moon and back nearly 80 times) and transported hundreds of thousands of passengers to destinations as far and wide as Warsaw and Ho Chi Minh City. Watch the final departure of A6-EMF here.

“In order to keep our fleet modern, efficient and appealing to our customers, we phase out some of our older aircraft on a regular basis. So far, in 2014 and 2015 we have phased out three B777-200s and eight A340-500s on schedule, which is no mean feat in itself. For the year 2015/2016, we’re planning a total of 10 phaseouts,” says Philip Audsley, Manager, Aircraft Assets.

Depending on the aircraft agreement, Emirates either returns the aircraft to the lessor at the end of the lease term, or presents the aircraft to the market for sale.

“The process of giving back a leased aircraft actually begins up to a year prior to the return of the aircraft, and includes meetings with the leasing company, providing paperwork and service/history records, liaising with the procurement department regarding the high value items fitted to the aircraft (such as landing gears and engines), and multiple physical inspections,” Mr. Audsley continued.

Physically, the aircraft goes through a number of processes, including a ‘de-branding’ exercise, which includes removing Emirates livery and branding from the aircraft. In effect, the aircraft becomes unrecognisable that it was an Emirates aircraft, apart from the seating and carpet, which remains intact.

Emirates pilot, Captain Constantinos Nicolaou flew A6-EMF to its final destination in Arizona.

“She’s been good to us,” said Captain Nicolaou, as he bid farewell to the aircraft. “Who would have thought when we first received this Boeing 777-200, that less than two decades later Emirates would emerge as the world’s largest wide-body airline, and the world’s largest operator of Boeing 777s. I wonder what the next two decades will bring.”

Airtel Uganda opens up mega Premium Shop at the New Taxi Park.

Leading telecoms provider Airtel Uganda has today unveiled its latest Premium Service Centre in the New Park located in Downtown Kampala. The opening of the premium service center was officiated by the Vice Chairman of KACITA, Ms. Hope Katwiine at a ceremony attended by Airtel Uganda staff and Directors alongside the area’s business partners and some of Airtel’s high value customers.

The Vice Chairperson of KACITA, Ms. Hope Katwiine and Airtel Uganda Sale...
The Vice Chairperson of KACITA, Ms. Hope Katwiine and Airtel Uganda Sale…

During the service center opening, Airtel Uganda Sales Director Mr. Ali Balunywa said; “It has been our endeavor to enhance the customer experience for our more than 7.2 million customers. Through our service centers found in central and accessible locations, convenient opening hours, and superior merchandise, we have an opportunity to give our customers the overall retail experience that Airtel has to offer. The launch of more shops around the country is a significant achievement for us and underlines the importance of engaging with our consumers on a daily basis.”

Since last year, Airtel has been actively growing its presence across the country and has premium shops in Fort Portal, Mbarara, Arua, Mbale, Kampala, Soroti and Gulu among others. These premium shops create a retail environment that’s entirely focused on the ultimate customer experience and give people an opportunity to explore the company’s entire range of products and services. They also offer priority service and dedicated relationship managers for the high value customers.

Speaking at the ceremony Ms. Katwiine commended Airtel on “rewarding loyal customers with preferential services and adding value to its customers nationwide.”

“This shop launch signifies Airtel’s commitment to enriching the lives of customers, not only by providing good products but also improving service quality and delivering tailor made amenities. Therefore, I would like to thank Airtel Uganda for providing a service that appeals to all economic classes,” she added.

The New Park-based premium shop is customer friendly, and caters to all types of customers, whether they are corporate customers or customers seeking a cost-effective telecom solution with one of the shop’s on-site consultants.

Airtel Rwanda takes part in training of women on financial freedom.

Airtel Rwanda took part in a two-day training of women to help them attain financial freedom. The training which took place at Lemigo Hotel, was organized by New Faces New Voices – Rwanda Chapter and facilitated by Centonomy, a Kenyan firm that specializes in training individuals and companies to attain financial freedom.

Airtel Rwanda MD, Mr. Teddy Bhullar

New Faces New Voices is a member-based organization that was launched in 2015 under the patronage of Her Excellency the First Lady of the Republic of Rwanda, Mrs. Jeannette Kagame. The chapter forms part of the Pan-African advocacy movement founded by Graca Machel that focuses on expanding the role and influence of women in the financial sector.

The training aimed to achieve women’s access to finance, business and financial capabilities and participation in decision making positions in financial institutions. This is done through networking, mentoring and advocacy by providing information services, programming and investments.

Speaking about the training, Airtel Rwanda Head of CSR and Corporate Communications, Denise Umunyana said; “At Airtel we uphold women values and support the development of women in society. It is with such core values that we worked hand-in-hand with New Faces New Voices to give these ladies financial training.”

The training groups women in six clusters; young emerging entrepreneurs, junior and mid-level professionals, enterprise owners, senior professionals and established entrepreneurs.

Bank of Rwanda Vice Governor and Chairperson of the New Faces New Voices Board, Dr. Monique Nsanzabaganwa, commended Airtel Rwanda for the support it has showed women in Rwanda through its different women empowerment programs.

Commenting on the initiative, Airtel Rwanda Managing Director, Mr. Teddy Bhullar said, “Women remain major players in our society. With a society of equal rights, we need to support women so as they can be part of our nation’s development. .”

Nakaseke International and Blessed Sacrament Kimanya win ARS Buganda Region tournament.

The fifth consecutive season of Airtel Rising Stars (ARS) national U-17 football tournament for boys and girls progressed this weekend with another regional tournament being played at Masaka Recreation Grounds in Masaka.

The Masaka games, which marked the second regional tournament on the 2015 edition of the Airtel Rising Stars, saw Nakaseke International retaining their title as Buganda Region boys champions with a two-nil win against Blessed Sacrament Kimanya. Mukono S.S defeated Bishop S.S in penalty shoot outs to become Buganda Region Girls champions.

Speaking at the end of the tournament, Airtel Uganda Brands and Assets Executive Musa Mayanja, said the ARS platform in the past four seasons had led to the discovery and nurturing of young stars, some of whom have commenced their professional careers in football.

“We are indeed happy that since its introduction, Airtel Rising Stars has played a major role in the nurturing of remarkable talents. We are therefore, proud to say that the Airtel Rising Stars initiative is gradually establishing itself as a strong feeder program for the national teams,” he added.

The Chief Guest and Masaka municipality mayor, Mr. Godfrey Kayemba thanked Airtel for its continued commitment to the development and empowerment of Ugandan youth through this soccer program. “Our youth have the potential to be a great impetus for Africa’s development, provided that an appropriate investment in human capital is made. This ARS initiative will help spotlight Africa’s potential, and I’m proud to be associated with such development,” he said.

The soccer talent program will end in an exclusive football camp for select top talents who would emerge from the respective countries under the tutelage of professional coaching staff from Arsenal FC, who will provide coaching clinics for the scouted talents under the Airtel Rising Stars platform.

Win 100% airtime for every Airtel Money Transaction.

Telecommunications provider, Airtel Uganda has unveiled a new campaign aimed to increase convenience as they carry out their Airtel money transactions. Dubbed ‘Airtel Money Peer to Peer (P2P) transact and win bonus campaign’, it encourages customers to deposit money on their Airtel Money accounts in order to carry out their transactions instead of having to search and find Airtel Money agents to make the transactions for them.

This is what Airtel Money Director at Airtel Uganda, Mr. Paul Langlois had to say about this new campaign. Paul Langlois, Airtel Uganda Airtel Money Director

Q1: What is the Airtel Money Peer to Peer (P2P) transact and win bonus campaign?

The Airtel Money transaction bonus is to encourage customers to deposit money on their accounts to transact from one person to another instead of using the Airtel Money agents to make the transactions for them.

Q2: How much bonus will the customer enjoy?

100% of the transaction charge. For example if the transaction is worth 2200/= you will receive 2200/= worth of airtime back.

Q3: How does the customer get the bonus?

The customer makes a transaction and they automatically receive airtime worth the value of the charge of the transaction.

Dial *185#, select send money, enter number, enter amount, enter your Airtel Money PIN – customer gets a confirmation message.

Q4: Which customers are eligible for this offer?

All prepaid customers that use Airtel Money to send money to other Airtel money customers are eligible for this offer.

Q5: Can I use my bonus to make calls to other networks?

No. this bonus is strictly for Airtel to Airtel Calls.

Q6: What takes priority, my bonus, my airtime or a bundle I have subscribed for (ILD, KIKA)?

Bonus Airtime takes priority over all the other DA accounts and main account balance and will be taken off first for any voice call made.

Q7: What can’t the bonus do?

Bonus airtime cannot be used for SMS, data, VAS, any bundles, Malako and Me2U. It is strictly for calls.

Q8: How can I check for my bonus?

Simply Dial *170#

Q9: Do I get a confirmation message the bonus has been loaded?

Yes.

Q10: Can I send me2u from my bonus?

No, bonus airtime cannot be used for me2u

Q12: Will I be able to send SMS’ to all other networks using my bonus?

No, bonus airtime cannot be used to send SMS.

Q13: Can I use the bonus whenever /any time?

The bonus should be used before midnight of the transaction day.

Q14: Do I get a bonus on other transactions?

No, only peer to Peer money transfers get you bonus.

Sauti Sol deliver astounding performance at Kampala concert.

We waited for them all this while and yes, the wait was worthwhile. That is a statement that pretty much sums up the high octane Tusker Lite Sauti Sol concert held at the Kampala Serena Hotel.

The four lads whose name loosely translates to ‘Voices in the Sun’ hypnotized their Ugandan fans with brilliant dance moves. Their ‘Sura Yako’ hit, with an offshoot of Western Kenya’s Lipala dance was the highlight of the night, if not the reason there was a full house.

The group has been performing all over the world for the last 10 years and this was their maiden concert in Uganda.

Fresh off a Black Entertainment Television (BET) nomination, Sauti Sol was in Uganda to launch Tusker Lite’s new ultra-modern pack as well as set in motion the ‘Lite the Way’ campaign. The campaign aims to inspire a trend of fresh inspiring consumers, who are ambitious and revolutionary.

Prior to the concert, Grace Nshemeire Gwaku, the Marketing Director at Uganda Breweries Limited explained that the concert’s underlying aim was to unveil a beer that delivers an easy drinking experience.

Swahili Nation's Charlie King Todwong impressed the audience with his vocals

“We would like to show our customers that Tusker Lite is a perfect companion for optimistic, cool customers who want a beer that will not slow them down as they party and work hard,” she said.

To kick start the night, Nutty Neithen, the ‘new’ kid on the block belted out his popular hits; ‘Follow my rules’ and ‘Bakuwe Kyonywa.’  Toniks followed immediately before leaving the stage for Michael Ross. The ‘Tell me’ hit singer wowed the audience with his dance moves and somersaults.

As Michael Ross bowed out, Swahili Nation stepped onto the stage. These guys’ music never goes out of vogue. They have indeed redefined the term ‘timeless.’ Their classical fads, accentuated by their vocal prowess makes them appeal to all age groups. They took the audience down memory lane with hits from the 90’s before concluding their performance with their mega hit, ‘Hakuna Matata’ also known as ‘Mpenzi.’ A wave of euphoria hit the crowd who by now had long abandoned their seats.

DJ Chrisio, a favorite disc spinner then took to the turn tables. For moments, the Victoria Hall was turned into a dance hall of sorts as the vigilant Chrisio made sure everyone was catered for musically. A cocktail of dance styles could be seen as the crowd got ‘busy.’

As Chrisio exited, on came Maurice Kirya. The night was only getting started as the ‘Mwoyo’ crooner, with his trademark guitar stirred up the audience. Kirya never disappoints and he was not about to do it on this night. A line up his favorite hits; ‘Mulembe gwa Kirya’, ‘Busaabala’ among others prepared the audience for the main act.

At around 12am the main act, Sauti Sol took to the stage amidst loud cheers. They knew Kampala was waiting for them and boy, they were here to deliver on that promise. As every song concluded, the audience chanted Sura Yako. Yes they wanted that single so much that a few could be seen warming up on the peripherals of the dance floor. They sang Nishike, Soma soma, Nereya, keeping the crowd on its feet the whole time.

Miroplast and Young for Hope win the Airtel Rising Stars Central Region Games.

Over the weekend, Kigali was treated to a rare touch of talent when sixteen teams competed in the Airtel Rising Stars tournament in the Central region. Comprised of twelve boy’s teams and four girls’ teams the games were played at different stadiums in Kigali with the finals being held at Federation Rwandese de Football Association (FERWAFA) football ground.

The competitions took place on Sunday 12th of June with a Miroplast (boys) and Young for Hope (girls) emerging as the regions champions. The two teams were declared champions in both the boys’ and girls’ categories respectively. In Kigali after Miroplast defeated Shining to take home the boys’ gold trophy and cash prize of Rwf 100,000 while Young for Hope (Gasabo) defeated St. Family (Nyarugenge) to emerge as the female champions and also got Rwf 100,000. The first runners up were awarded Rwf 80, 000 and Rwf 70,000.

All the eight teams have now already embarked on the uphill task of preparing for the national finals that will be held in Musanze on the 18th to 19th July. Airtel Rising Stars national finals will take place in Musanze where the regional winners will battle out for the bragging rights of being the champions of the country.

The Airtel Rising Stars initiative, the biggest Under-17 grassroots tournament on the African continent, aims at identifying talent and nurturing upcoming footballers. This is one of the few football equal opportunity initiatives that targets boys and girls. Over the years, the Airtel Rising Stars initiative has yielded many success stories and has enabled several upcoming soccer talents to join Africa Premier League clubs and their countries’ national teams.

The selected players get an opportunity to get the best-in-class sports training, during residential clinics that have over the years, been held by some of Arsenal FC’s legends. Airtel has played a major role in the nurturing of remarkable talents and in Rwanda there is an abundance of talent that is waiting to be nurtured.

Speaking at the games, Airtel Rwanda Brands and Communication manager, Clementine Nyampinga, said; “Airtel is dedicated to nurture young talent through the Under 17 grassroots football initiative that enables us to reach out to the youth. It is our desire to see young people live their dream and soccer is one of our major platforms in doing so .This soccer tournament provides this opportunity to the youngsters and creates a great opportunity for the players to engage more in the game.”

Airtel, currently the largest supporter of youth football on the continent, has partnered with FERWAFA to ensure that football regulations are followed.

Airtel Rwanda setting the pace at Rwanda’s first ever 4G Square.

Airtel Rwanda participated in the opening of the first ever 4G Square in Rwanda. In partnership with Olleh Rwanda Networks and being presided over by the Minister for Youth and ICT- Hon. Jean Philbert Nsengimana, the 4G Square was launched in Kigali at the Grand Pension Plaza.

Being the first of its kind in the country, the 4G Square will be a one-stop hub for all the 4G LTE technology devices that include; smart phones, touch pads, smart watches and a conference room, a refreshment area and advanced on technology options (Play interactive system) for customers to experiment with.

Speaking about the launch of the 4G Square and Airtel 4G booth, Chrysanthe Turatiman, the Airtel Value Added Services, Devices and Data Manager said; “The 4G Square is the latest innovation that has come to Rwanda and this will go a long way in easing access to 4G services for the people of Rwanda. Being the preferred 4G internet providers, we shall ensure that consumers enjoy consistent, uninterrupted and high quality super-fast internet speeds.”

The 4G Square will also have free super-fast internet that can be accessed at inside the square by all customers. The Airtel booth will provide 3G and 4G internet solutions for all customers and it will be open every day.

Hon Jean Philbert Nsengimana - Ministry of Youth and ICT Rwanda with Airtel Staff at the launch of the 4G Square located at Grand Pension Plaza

The Guest of Honor, Hon. Jean Philbert Nsengimana Minister of Youth and ICT Rwanda said; “4G LTE technology is a win for the ICT and the business community in Rwanda. This is what the economy of technology is all about and we hope that talented youths can be able to use this 4G Square to produce developmental applications that can help our nation.”

4G LTE is the fourth generation of mobile telecommunications technology, succeeding 3G. 4G LTE technology provides mobile ultra-broadband Internet access to internet enabled devices like smartphones, tablets and laptops. It is considered the fastest internet in Africa.

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