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Meet Chika Ekeji, Nigerian Leading MTN Group’s Strategy

MTN Media Innovation Programme (MTN-MIP Fellows) visited the group’s headquarters in Fairlands, Johannesburg, South Africa where we met innovative minds like Chika Ekeji.

The visit was part of the study-trip coorindated by the School of Media and Communications (SMC), Pan-Atlantic University (PAU) to the 100 year-old University of Witswatersrand, and MTN Group.

 

MTN MIP Fellows seated at MTN’s Boardroom while Chika Ekeji makes presentation (PHOTO Credit: Opeyemi Gazali/SMC)

Chika Ekeji is the MTN Group Chief Strategy and Transformation officer. His role is really strategic in view of the MTN Ambition 2025 anchored on leading digital solutions for Africa’s progress.

In this role, Chika is spearheading MTN Group’s global strategic partnerships, national roaming, and the Business Intelligence and Analytics Center of Excellence for Africa’ largest telecommunications player serving over 280 million customers across 21 operating countries in Africa and the Middle East.

According to his LinkedIn profile, Chika joined MTN as Group Executive: Strategy & Transformation in March 2021. In other words, he rose to the position of Group Chief Strategy and Transformation officer in less than two years of joining the technology company.

Prior Experiences

Prior to joining MTN Group, Chike Ekeji worked with McKinsey & Company for eight years; rising from Associate, Engagement Manager to Associate Principal.

He led the West Africa Digital Practice for McKinsey & Company and was responsible for driving digital and advanced analytics strategy and transformation at scale across banking, asset management, telco, and public sector clients, with a deep focus on digital business building, mobile financial services, and Agile Go-to-Market and customer acquisition.

He also developed growth/revenue acceleration, cost and operational improvement strategies across multiple industries.

Chika brought to bear the experience he garnered as an Associate at Booz & Company from October 2011 to April 2013.

Chika Ekeji unpacking MTN Ambition 2025 (PHOTO Credit: Opeyemi Gazali/SMC)

 

He delivered on projects like trade promotion optimization and trade spend re-allocation for a $10B global food manufacturer; developing Social media capability strategy for a Fortune 500 healthcare payor; reshaped next-generation digital merchant service strategy for a Fortune 100 financial services client and delivered on market sentiment valuation of a leading electronics retailer.

He actually had a stint with Booz & Company Summer Associate between June 2010 and August 2010. During that time, he contributed to cost saving strategies fueling 10x enterprise value growth for a $500M client; performed expense and headcount analysis across multiple business units to test hypotheses on key opportunities for spend reduction.

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He then left to start as the Founder/CEO of aurum valley, an Abuja-based ‘premier group buying service’. The company’s mission is simply to offer the members all the best goods, services, and experiences at up to 90% off while helping great businesses reach thousands of new customers via internet and mobile marketing tools and strategies.

Well, you can drill Chika Ekeji’s Strategy Prowess down to the five plus years he worked at Microsoft. He started with Microsoft in July 2004 working as the Security Program Manager & Office Sustained Engineering.

In November 2007, he was elevated to the post of Senior Implementation Strategist. Hope you are connecting the dots? As a Senior Implementation Strategist at Microsoft between 2007 and 2009, Chika Ekeji developed corporate strategies for software privacy, accessibility, geopolitics, and online safety standards compliance for Microsoft and clienteles.

 

L-r: Funso Aina, Senior Manager, External Relations at MTN Nigeria Plc., Mike Okwoche, Senior Anchor at TVC NEWS and President, MTN –MIP Fellows 1; Chika Ekeji, Group Chief Strategy & Transformation Officer, MTN; Isaac – Ogugua Ezechukwu, the Director, Professional Programmes, School of Media and Communications (SMC), Pan-Atlantic University (PAU); Lakinbofa Goodluck, Public Relations Manager, MTN Nigeria, and Elsie Godwin, Marketing Manager, Cassava Network and Vice President, MTN –MIP Fellows 1, during the Fellows visit to MTN Innovation Centre in South Africa – (PHOTO Credit: Opeyemi Gazali/SMC)

 

He also drove the security response business for all in-market client and server applications in the Microsoft Office family of products.

Actually, the apple doesn’t fall far from the tree. Chika as MTN Group’s Chief Strategy & Transformation officer is a reflection of long-term hardwork and experience he gathered overtime which is already evident in the Group’s Ambition 2025.

Education

Chika Ekeji is a Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) Sloan School of Management trained Entrepreneur. He obtained MBA from the Institution in 2011.

He is a Cornell University graduate of Master of Engineering, Computer Science (2004). Chika first obtained Bachelors, Computer Science, Mathematics, Marketing from Cornell University in 2003.

Postscript

MTN Group made no mistake selecting Chika to lead its Strategy for the ambitious journey to connect 100 million mobile money (MoMo) users, 100 million Ayoba users, $0.5 billion enterprise service revenue, become number one Africa’s NaaS platform and API gateway respectively by year 2025.

The strategic priorities include: Build the largest and most valuable platforms, Drive industry-leading connectivity operations, Create shred value and Accelerate portfolio transformation. This rests on a scale connectivity and infrastructure business – mobile and fixed access networks in the consumer, enterprise and wholesale segments.

Group Photograph (PHOTO Credit: Opeyemi Gazali/SMC)

 

The enablers include making technology second to none, leading customer experience, harnessing best talent, culture and future skills, value-based capital allocation and environment, sustainability and governance (ESG) at the core.

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Written by PH

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