Advertising industry insiders have revealed that one of the country’s most lucrative advertising contracts has changed hands after Mobile Telecommunications Limited (MTC) recently chose Weathermen & Co as its new advertising agency. The high-income contract, estimated by industry experts to be worth N$60 million annually, has been with well-known advertising firm, Advantage Y&R, since the 1990’s.
Weathermen & Co, which is a subsidiary of the Ohlthaver and List (O&L) Group of Companies, has since its inception become one of the most sought-after advertising agencies in the country. According to their website their impressive client list includes corporate giants such as Total Namibia, Pupkewitz, Namib Mills, Namibia Breweries, the Manica Group and of course O&L, amongst others. Weathermen & Co was initially established in 2014 by O&L to handle the promotion of its extensive array of brands in the domestic market.
“Unfortunately we are not in a position to comment until the contract has been signed,” said Weathermen & Co’s MD, Leon Crous. He added, however, that other advertising agencies who pitched for the account have been informed that they were unsuccessful in securing the much sought-after client.
MTC was also tightlipped about the new agency, with Tim Ekandjo, the company’s chief human capital and corporate affairs officer, saying: “We will make an announcement once the process is finalised.”
Ekandjo declined to provide any further comment on the contract. He however confirmed that the contract went out on tender, in line with MTC’s policy for the contract to go out on tender every three years. “The tender process has not been finalised yet and once finalized we will share all details,” he said.
MTC’s bankable advertising contract has been at the centre of controversy in recent years after former MTC chairman and Windhoek-based lawyer, Dirk Conradie, was accused of allegedly using his influence and offering a bribe to ensure the advertising contract was awarded to his preferred company, DV8 Saatchi and Saatchi. The charges against Conradie alleged he would have ensured DV8 Saatchi and Saatchi get the contract if his long-time friend, Sara Damases, was able to secure a stake in the advertising agency. Most of the charges against Conradie are still pending in the High Court.