– Rise and rise of the movie super star
SUPER star actress, Genevieve Ifunanya Nnaji has surprisingly made over N100 million in just 12 months with mouth-watering endorsements from BMW/Range Rover (Coscharis), top luxury fashion brand, Polo, giant telecoms company, Etisalat and the more recent Nigeria Breweries Amstel Malta mega deal. Thus, emerging the queen of endorsements!
A breakdown of Genevieve’s multiple endorsements revealed that the delectable thespian made $100,000 as the brand ambassador of Range Rover Evoque. She also had the rare privilege of cruising in the wonder-on-wheels for six months before returning it to Coscharis, the Range Rover franchise owner in Nigeria.
Interestingly, she was given the option of keeping the posh ride worth over N10 million and $50,000 (N8.2 million). But the wise Mbaise-Igbo girl knew what she wanted ($100,000).
Fortunes smiled again on the ex-Face of Lux and MUD Cosmetics ambassador early this year, when she cornered yet another endorsement deal from Polo, a designer outfit marketers of luxury wristwatches, sunglasses and other designer items. Genevieve was rumoured to have got N35 million from Polo. A figure that has neither been confirmed nor denied by the designer brand.
Genevieve was on song again in February 2014, when telecommunication giants, Etisalat signed her to feature on the brand’s campaigns and activation. Specifically assigned the Eazy Flex account, the sweet-faced and adorable role interpreter arguably made a whopping N100 million!
Doubt it or take it, industry sources claimed that she couldn’t have accepted anything less than N50 million, considering her status. After all, her employers had boasted they are not after quantity but quality. In a veiled reference to their competing brands.
Lucky Genevieve has also been confirmed NB Plc Amstel Malta ambassador alongside football icon, Mikel Obi, making her the first high-profile Nigerian actress to be so endorsed. Although NB Plc officials are keeping the mega deal in wraps, ENCOMIUM Weekly’s reliable sources revealed it is far bigger than her previous endorsement deals.
Following the premiere, at the African Magic Viewers Choice Awards (AMVCA), on Saturday, March 8, 2014, of a new Amstel Malta TVC featuring Genevieve and football star, Mikel Obi, she has now confirmed she has been an ambassador for the low sugar malt drink.
ENCOMIUM Weekly gathered the deal which obviously runs into millions of naira was sealed earlier this year, with the first campaign centred around inspirational journey-to-success stories.
The TVC which was aired during the star-studded AMVCA highlighted the individual career journey of both super stars, winding up at a point of triumph.
Mikel was not present at the awards but Genevieve, who presented an award with one-time winner of Amstel Box Office (AMBO), OC Ukeje spoke with Amstel Malta red carpet host, Vixen Ikwere on her journey to success and how she hoped the project would help young Nigerians make the best of their own journeys.
“I am very excited about the opportunity this platform gives me to inspire the youths and will definitely do my best to support the noble cause,” she said.
Although there is no official detail as regards the duration and cost of Genevieve’s Amstel Malta deal, the brand’s manager, Hannath Ageni-Yusuf said that what spurred their interest in the popular interest is her message to young Nigerians. “A message of hope, of resilience, of ambition and the power of possibilities. We all have to prepare and plot our journeys to success and Amstel Malta is committed to empower our consumers all the way.”
Ageni-Yusuf added that “the campaign will also include a multi-platform series that will tell the journey-to-success stories of some of today’s most inspiring Nigerian figures.”
Relatedly, Mr. Walter Drenth, Marketing Director, Nigeria Breweries Plc, has also officially identified Genevieve as one of their ambassadors. Said he, “We are even more inspired as we celebrate the best of the African movie industry and having world multi-talented acts with us such as Genevieve Nnaji and Mikel Obi on board is an opportunity to further showcase Africa to the world.”
One of the greatest actresses from the African continent, Genevieve Nnaji is the first Nigerian actress to be profiled on the Oprah Winfrey Show. She has also been featured on CNN’s African Voices, BBC World Service among other international media platforms.
Born on May 3, 1979, in Mbaise, Imo State, she grew in Lagos. Genevieve is the fourth of eight children. Her father worked as an engineer and her mother as a school teacher. Genevieve attended Methodist Girls College, Yaba, Lagos. She later went to the University of Lagos where she began auditioning for acting jobs. Genevieve actually started her acting career as a child actor in the then popular television soap, Ripples at eight. In 1998, at 19, she formally joined Nollywood with the movie, Most Wanted.
She has shot well over 80 movies including Last Party, Mark of the Beast, Camouflage (1999), Love Boat (2001), Death Warrant (2001), Valentino, Sharon Stone, Runs, Power of Love, Formidable Force, Battleline (2002), Above Death, Blood Sister, Break up, Butterfly, By His Grace, Church Business, Deadly Mistake, Emotional Wedding, Emotional Tears, For Better For Worse, Honey, Jealous Lovers, Keeping Faith: Is That Love?, Women Affair, Critical Decision, Dangerous Sister, Promise Me Forever (2004), Darkest Night, Games Women Play, Rip Off (2005), Letters to A Stranger (2007), Broken Tears, Beautiful Soul (2008), Ije: The Journey, Tango With Me, Bursting Out, Mirror Boy (2010), Sacred Lies (2011), among others.
Some of her commercials include Pronto beverage and Omo detergent. In 2004, she became the Face of Lux in Nigeria. She is also the face of MUD Cosmetics.
Genevieve has received several awards and nominations for her movies. She was voted Africa Movie Academy Awards (AMAA) Best Actress in 2005.
Several efforts to speak with Genevieve Nnaji on her endorsement with Amstel Malta was not fruitful. We also forwarded the following questions to clarify the terms and duration of the deal as well as details of her other juicy commercial engagements but the Nollywood star declined response on Saturday, March 15, 2014:
-How does it feel to be Amstel Malta ambassador.
-How many years would the contract last?
-How much is it worth?
-Why do you think you were considered for this?
-What are you offering Amstel Malta, what would you be doing for them?
-What are your other endorsements so far?
-How does it feel to be the toast of brands right now?
-Are you not excited by the fact that you have won over N100 million in endorsements in the last one year or so?
– UCHE OLEHI