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Women in Business: Bola Atta

Bola Atta is the Group Director, Corporate Communication at UBA PLC, CEO at UBA Foundation and Executive Director, REDTV.

As the Corporate Social Responsibility arm of the UBA Group, UBA Foundation is committed to the socio-economic betterment of the communities in which the bank operates, focusing on development in the areas of education, environment, economic empowerment and special projects.

REDTV is a fast-paced lifestyle channel that puts Africa on the global stage. Proudly associated with the United Bank for Africa, it is a platform with content that features the very best in entertainment, fashion, news, design, music, sport, movies and travel.

Bola Atta was nominated as the Best Marketing professional in West Africa in 2017. She was also on the list of the 40 top Nigerians under 40 in 2008 and celebrated as one of the 100 most influential women in Nigeria in March 2015.

A graduate of Economics with an M.B.A majoring in Marketing, and over 25 years of experience in diverse fields ranging from Banking, Business, Communications, Publishing, Entertainment and the Media. Approximately 19 out of these 25+ years have been in high-level management and entrepreneurship, enabling her to gain expertise in each of these varied fields of work.

She has worked with government agencies both in Nigeria and South Africa using her expertise in public relations and increasing her wide network within Africa. She made a mark in the Media industry on the African continent as one of the most sought after editors in West Africa.

In 2003, she was invited by the African Leadership Institute in partnership with the UNDP to work on a panel for the development of scenarios for South Africa in 2020.

Speaking on Work-life-balance, she says it is a myth and the closest reality is actually Work-life integration.

“It is easy to get overwhelmed whilst balancing the many things going on in our lives, and when we’re asked how we are doing “Good” is the default response even when you are not okay. It is okay to say “No” and want a break. Depression and Suicide are common social issues that don’t get talked about especially at the work place.

Chances are that there are suicidal people around you, and whilst they may or may not proceed to take their own lives, it is important to pay attention to people around us: listen without judgement, be kind, and offer professional help when needed.” Bola says.

With a passion for film making, Bola says Nollywood ranks behind Bollywood as the third-largest filmmaking industry (in terms of output), and it is undeniable that Nollywood is one of continent’s biggest entertainment export. “ PwC reports that a 21.5 percent compounded annual growth rate (CAGR) is anticipated in 2022, with revenue reaching US$9.9 billion in the same year. This is huge. However, it could be even bigger. It is evident that there are still some lapses in the development of the sector and these existing challenges need to be addressed to take the industry to the next level.” She opines.

Bola is of the view that Africa is home to create resources that can help boost economies, create employment and development. However, she says lack of available funding can cripple filmmakers.

Bola Atta is the Group Director, Corporate Communication at UBA PLC, CEO at UBA Foundation and Executive Director, REDTV.
Bola Atta is the Group Director, Corporate Communication at UBA PLC, CEO at UBA Foundation and Executive Director, REDTV.

“Thankfully, in May 2019, the Central Bank of Nigeria in a bid to support the creative industry and stimulate economic development announced the Creative Industry Financing Initiative (CIFI), where players in the film making industry can now access long-term low-interest loans up to N500 million.”

At UBA, Bola’s role involves, but is not limited to, directing the development and execution of global marketing and communications initiatives as well as managing brand delivery and consistency across all markets and for all products line.

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