Since 2013, the SABRE IN2 awards have recognized outstanding work that exemplifies the expanding scope of the public relations profession, from content creation to the evaluation process, which uses data and analytics to inform, enhance, and evaluate campaign successes around the world.
Provoke Media announced Aina’s honor on February 15, 2023.
On Thursday, March 23, 2023, the award was presented at the PRovoke EMEA Summit in Gesellschaftshaus Palmengarten Frankfurt, Germany.
CEO & Editor-in-chief, PRovoke Media, Arun Sudhaman said, “The media and communications industry is in the age of convergence, with every discipline demonstrating decent impressions to be most valuable to organisations and agencies. The innovation SABRE awards recognises campaigns that are groundbreaking- having factual data analysis and implemented with the use of technology for evaluation by industry leaders. The award category spotlights professionals in agencies and brands that empower and enable reputation excellence within their organizations.”
This innovation award recognizes Funso’s pioneering efforts in media relations through MTN Nigeria’s Media Innovation Programme (MIP): a six-month certificate program for Nigerian media practitioners to help them understand the changing media landscape and how to effectively use technology to create impactful media content in the country and across Africa.
During the study, 20 media practitioners from various media sectors participated in capacity-building sessions to spark their innovations and improve ways of practice toorder to create industry sustainability. This was evident during their study trip to the University of Witwatersrand in South Africa, where they engaged in interactive sessions on creativity and innovation, explored opportunities in the media business, and brainstorm solutions to some of the challenges to successfully running media businesses in Africa.
Funso, a corporate communication professional with over two decades of experience and a member of the Nigerian Institute of Public Relations (NIPR) came out on top across Europe, the Middle East, and Africa (EMEA). The industry regulator NIPR in 2022, named him the ‘Most Influential Public Relations Professional in Nigeria.’
Aina says:, “I am grateful for the recognition from SABRE and its dedication to acknowledging exceptional content produced by modern PR professionals. This award is inspiring for all of us at MTN; it emboldens our commitment to improving the media landscape and implementing our ‘Good Together’ initiative. I am convinced we still have feats to achieve in the industry, and with strategic thinking, we will cover even more grounds.”
Funso Aina has worked in journalism, cultural diplomacy, and telecommunications for nearly three decades. He has a diverse set of skills and practical experience in public relations, corporate communications, media relations, public affairs, and reputation and crisis management. He is a member of the prestigious International Visitors Program (IVP) of the United States State Department and the British Commonwealth Press Union (CPU).
Before joining MTN Nigeria in 2009, he worked as the British Council’s Communications Manager, Chief Correspondent at Punch, Assistant Editor at The Nation, and Senior Reporter at Independent Communications Network Limited (ICNL), publishers of The News, Tempo magazines, and PM newspapers.
He holds a Bachelor of Arts degree in History (University of Ilorin, 1992) and a Master’s degree in International Relations (Obafemi Awolowo University, Ile-Ife, 1998).