• Thursday, June 20, 2024
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Layi Wasabi: One year of success at Penzaarville Africa

Layi Wasabi: One year of success at Penzaarville Africa

In the wake of the just concluded Africa Magic Viewers’ Choice Awards (AMVCA), the proverb “it takes a village to raise a child” rings incredibly true. As the tenth edition of the award concluded in a night of celebration, one of Nigeria’s fastest-growing creator talents, Layi Wasabi, took home the Best Digital Content Creator Award for his skit, Medical Negligence.

The highly coveted award, which recognizes outstanding achievement in television and film across Africa, marked a significant milestone for the fast-rising star and solidified his position as a leading force in the Nigerian comedy content creation scene.

June 2023, Penzaarville Africa signed a talent management deal with Layi Wasabi, bringing the then- 21-year-old skit maker from his home in Osogbo to Lagos. According to Olufemi Oguntamu, the company’s CEO and Lead Consultant, they had one goal.

“Our goal was ensuring that he excelled and reached the topmost echelon of his career as a comedy content creator. Less than a year later, we are incredibly proud to say that we’ve gotten started on that and we can already see the results,” he shared.

Talent management is the lifeblood of the creative industry, acting as the bridge between raw creativity with strategic execution. In an industry such as this that is driven by innovation, imagination, and originality; the ability to identify and nurture top talent is important.

The creative sector thrives on the diversity of ideas, perspectives, and skills brought forth by its workforce, and good talent management ensures that these diverse talents are not only recognized but also cultivated to their full potential.

For over seven years, Penzaarville Africa has been devoted to helping creatives cultivate their talent to their fullest potential. Layi’s ongoing success is a loud testament to this goal.

Some successes recorded

In the past year, Layi Wasabi has grown to inconceivable heights in the industry, beating peers and even predecessors alike. The creator has undergone a holistic evolution in terms of content quality and reach.

He began 2023 with 300K followers on Instagram, and by the end of the year, he had amassed 1.2 million more followers. He ended the year being the second most engaged skitmaker on Instagram, garnering 133.2 million views.

Now, Wasabi stands tall as the skitmaker with the highest engagement on Instagram in the first quarter of 2024, with over two million followers.

Beyond Instagram skits, the agency has worked with Layi to craft a well-rounded career in the entertainment industry.

In the past year, he has made an acting debut, starring first in the 2023 Nollywood blockbuster, Adire, and subsequently in Ánikúlápó and Japa.

He has also been featured in global campaigns with stronghold media companies like Netflix alongside other African media stars, Solomon More and Mammito Eunice.

According to Wasabi, all of these are not just a result of his talent but collaboration with a managing team that understands the industry.
“I’ve been extremely blessed for the opportunity to be mentored and managed by someone like Olufemi Oguntamu who understands the creative industry like no other,” he said. “He’s had a long history of working with other creatives I admire and so I wholeheartedly trust in his ability and the agency to take me and my talent where we need to go.”

Above doing the work, Wasabi’s talent and hard work have been recognised across the country and continent. In 2023, he won the Emerging Force award by TrendsUp, and was nominated for the prestigious The Future Awards Africa in the Content Creation category alongside other industry stalwarts like Broda Shaggi and Fisayo Fosudo.

Earlier in the year, Wasabi received not one, but two nominations in the Best Digital Content category which he won. His hilarious skits, “Medical Negligence” and “Copyright Infringement,” which together garnered over seven million views on Instagram, faced stiff competition from Taaooma, Lizzy Jay and other talented creators.

Wasabi’s win has also resonated beyond the entertainment industry. The Governor of Osun State,— Ademola Nurudeen Adeleke,—where Layi hails from, took to Instagram to congratulate him and highlighted Layi’s journey as “an example of the new Osun we are building,” praising his ability to transcend limitations and achieve excellence.

In conclusion, Layi Wasabi’s evolution at Penzaarville Africa stands as an example of the boundless potential possible within the creative industry, and according to Nefisat Mohammed who is Business Development Manager at Penzaarville Africa, the agency will continue to push creatives towards their potential.

“As we move towards the future, we remain resolute in our commitment to nurturing talent, fostering innovation, and pushing creators like Wasabi towards the highest level of excellence,” she said.