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WhatsApp is working on giving users more privacy.
The messaging platform is exploring a feature that will allow you choose who can see your phone number. If you’re in any groups, you’ll notice that usernames are highlighted over phone numbers now, and this new update means that your phone number will be even more private.
What Koromone Asabe-Yobaere is jamming to
Koromone “KAY” Asabe-Yobaere is a superstar. She is the chief brand officer at Jamit, an audio entertainment company empowering diverse creators, podcasters, and audio storytellers. Before Jamit, Koromone was managing editor at TechCabal for two years where she managed the publication’s daily operations.
What exactly does a chief brand officer do?
A chief brand officer (CBO) creates and oversees the vision of a company’s brand. I say vision because brands aren’t static entities—they adapt to trends. Chief brand officer is used interchangeably with chief marketing officer (CMO) but both come with slightly different responsibilities. CBOs craft a brand’s principles, values, voice and tone, and brand guidelines; CMOs execute high-level marketing strategies and campaigns for a business.
You took a three-month sabbatical this year. What did you learn from that experience?
I learned how to create, edit, and market my debut poetry album using Garageband, Canva, and Distrokid. It took about a month for me to figure out the technical bits and bobs, but I caught on eventually.
Rest is vital for high achievers like water is vital for the body. Rest isn’t about sleeping long hours or slipping into couch potato mode every weekend, it’s more about making a conscious decision to slow down and take note of how you feel in your mind, body, and soul. Do you wake up stressed and anxious? Have you worked weekends every month since the year started? High achievers must prioritize rest or risk burning out before they reach their career peak.
You went from writing about startups to joining a founding team. Is there any mindset change that’s happening for you?
I now have to take on the mindset of a senior leader, not a middle manager. Middle managers are the engine of a business—they act as intermediaries between top management and junior staffers and also translate a business’s vision into measurable assignments and activities. As a senior leader, I have to think about strategy, direction, people operations, profitability, etc. It’s big girl pants on season.
Are there any learnings you’re taking from your old role into your new one?
- Managing and growing hybrid and remote teams.
- Understanding business operations and getting my hands dirty when the going gets tough.
- Embracing creativity and moving at a quick but calculated pace.
What’s your vision for the future of your Jamit?
A fun and expressive audio entertainment brand that is home to Black and African voice creators. I want Jamit to work with the most diverse and gifted podcasters, talk show hosts, voice actors, and influencers.
What advice do you have for those that want to be birkin baddies?
- Say your prayers
- Drink more water
- Be kind to yourself
- Own a couple of Bottegas
What are you jamming to at the moment?
S2 Ep 3 of Long Story Short podcast hosted by Noah Banjo.
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Nigeria pauses social media KYC requirement
The CBN’s social media KYC requirement is not getting any likes.
On Tuesday, the House of Representatives asked the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) to temporarily halt the implementation of an earlier directive to use social media handles for know-your-customer (KYC) operations.
The decision was made after a motion was approved by nine lawmakers during the plenary session.
ICYMI: In June 2023, the CBN made it mandatory for all financial institutions to collect and verify all social media handles for KYC operations, as part of its Customer Due Diligence Regulations 2023.
According to the CBN, the policy will allow financial institutions to conduct an effective assessment of potential risks associated with money laundering, terrorism financing, and proliferation financing.
A violation of privacy rights: During the debate on the motion, Kelechi Nwogu, a representative from Rivers, highlighted that the directive violates Section 37 of the Constitution, which protects the right to privacy.
Image source: Tenor
He further argued that there are more efficient ways to monitor money laundering and the financing of terrorism, such as using the Nigeria Police Force (NPF), the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC), and intelligence agencies. Additionally, the directive will disproportionately impact Nigerians who do not use social media but generate significant income from their businesses and trades. These Nigerians will either be forced to use formal banking systems, or they will be excluded from them on a systematic level, with consequences for their businesses and livelihoods. At this time, barely 16% of Nigeria’s 190 million population have access to social media.
Zoom out: With Nigeria’s troubling history with social media, many Nigerians tagged the move as yet another move by the government to curtail social media.
The battle for the top artificial intelligence (AI) chatbot is heating up.
Yesterday, Google announced that its AI chatbot, Bard, is now available in South Africa, Brazil, and many parts of the world including the European Union (EU), after an initial delay due to data privacy concerns.
Bard, unveiled in February, is also available in 40 languages including Swahili, the first African language supported by the generative AI platform. Other languages supported by Bard include Arabic, Chinese, German, Hindi, Spanish, and more.
Bard’s expansion also comes with new features. Bard can now understand and respond to images, in addition to text. It can also speak its responses aloud in over 40 languages, thanks to a new text-to-speech AI feature. Users can now pin, rename, and share their conversations with Bard, and even modify Bard’s responses to make them simpler, longer, shorter, more professional, or more casual. Bard’s code export capabilities have also been expanded, and you can now export Python code to Replit—an online integrated development environment (IDE) in addition to Google Colab.
Zoom out: With this global expansion and new features, Google is making sure its ChatGPT rival, Bard, is available to a wider audience and provides the best user experience.
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Image source: TC Insights
This week, Nigerian mobility company Moove raised $8 million in an undisclosed round from Absa Corporate and Investment Banking (CIB).
Here are the other deals this week:
- Nigerian HR tech company, Propel raised $2.74 million in seed funding. The funding was led by No Such Ventures, with participation from APX, Golden Egg Check, and Future of Learning Fund participating too.
- Egyptian fintech company Exits MENA received $1.25 million in a pre-seed funding round from Silicon Valley-based venture firm Practical VC.
- Agenz, a Morrocan proptech company, secured $1.3 million in pre-series A funding from Azur Innovation Fund, Maroc Numeric Fund II, and Beenok, an international investment fund.
- Egyptian fintech company Menthum raised an undisclosed amount in pre-seed funding from Acasia Ventures and A15, along with other investors.
That’s it for this week!
Follow us on Twitter, Instagram, and LinkedIn for more funding announcements. You can also visit DealFlow, our real-time funding tracker.
The World Wide Web3
* Data as of 22:06 PM WAT, July 13, 2023.
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