Ayo Animashaun, 45, is the President of Smooth Productions incorporating Hip Hop World, an exclusively music entertainment all gloss, all colour magazine, Hip TV, The Headies, and the most prestigious music awards in Nigeria, Realtime TV, a revolutionary broadcast service using High Definition (HD) and convergence technology to connect viewers with live events.
In this exclusive no holds bared interview with Encomium Weekly at his 6, Ogundana Street, off Allen Avenue, Ikeja, Lagos office plaza, the music entertainment guru explained all about his new born baby, Realtime Tv and the arrival of his 3-in-one state of the art Outside Broadcasting van (OB Van), how he intends to revolutionaise television broadcast in Nigeria and more.
Congratulations, Ayo Animashaun, you have every reason to be gamboling in the meadows with the arrival of a complete set of Outside Broadcasting van, one personal carrier, the power truck and the broadcasting van itself. How about that?
It’s a different level of challenges and responsibility. No matter how expensive these equipment may be, they’re mere tools for providing services. It’s until we’re able to revolutionise the entertainment industry that I will feel fulfilled. So, work is ongoing.
Could you please tell us the dynamics of this Outside Broadcasting set of equipment?
It’s one broadcast van supported by two other vans – one tender van that moves the equipment and the others move the crew. The OBV has its own dedicated 20 KVA generator, housed by a Mercedes Benz sprinted 515 2014 model. It’s a Seabrand HD multiple camera production unit with replay and slow motion pictures.
By the look of things, it seems you want to establish a new template for outside broadcasting TV?
What we’re trying to do is revolutionary. We’ve lived in the desert for a long time. So, we’re taking this to a different level where one can watch live events with communication devices.
Do you think there was a lacuna in the TV broadcasting industry that informed your bringing in these multi million naira equipment?
Of course, there was a very serious market gap but somebody has to cover it up, though it’s expensive.
We have every reason to believe you were very much conscious of the need for capacity building of manpower to man these state of the art equipment, and the first in Africa, how far?
The company that built the OB van is very big in the world industry. They wouldn’t deliver such without adequate crew training. The training has even been concluded. Some British Broadcasting Corporation (BBC) engineers were here to train our men. Some guys that produce EPL were here also to train our crew. We had some of the best technical guys from around the world. One of them from the U.K, three from Israel and one from Germany.
At your tender age, what provoked you into this adorable venture. If you look around nobody within your age bracket has ventured into this type of investment, what do you want to tell Nigerians and Africans at large?
It’s not about age, but vision. It’s about my passion to deliver unprecedented entertainment value. Also the service has to be provided, I feel privileged that we are still here. When people make money in Nigeria with their talents to run overseas to invest. They don’t believe their talents can sustain them, we’re investing in Nigeria because we have every reason to believe our talents can sustain us here as bona fide citizens of the Federal Republic of Nigeria.
Is this going to be independent of Hip TV or a sister outfit with what name?
It’s a different package altogether, the content is going to be on Hip TV and on Realtime Nigeria.
You said you want to build our own Dubai in Nigeria with this equipment. How?
With the exceptional service we’re going to be rendering. The system is crazy because people can’t watch entertainment content live in Nigeria and that’s what we are about to change. It will open new roads to a lot of opportunities for the country and citizenry.
When is take off time?
We’re test running. We have two major events already – DJ Exclusive all white party and Osas and Gbenro’s wedding.
When and how did you conceptualise this project.
It started in 2013. We decided to bring something fresh to the table after seeing the need to do so, we called our channel a break from the norm.
There is every reason to believe you’re the first among your contemporaries to acquire a 3 in one outside broadcasting van and amazingly, the first in Africa, how do you feel about this uncommon feat as a pioneer of the revolution in outside TV broadcasting?
Before us we had major stations like AIT and Channels, but not this same equipment. What is driving is different. Like I said, we want to revolutionise the entertainment industry.
According to the manual these are state of the art equipment built to specification. What statement do you want to make?
It was built according to what is required to deliver our service to the satisfaction of our audience.
Please, could your summarise what Realtime represents?
Realtime is revolutionary broadcast service using High Definition (HD) and convergence technology to connect viewers with live events in the comfort of their homes, on computers, laptops, smart phones and tablets via our newly designed streaming platform – realtime.ng and HipTV on DStv 324 and GOtv 74.
Realtime is a platform/service for audience to stay connected with live events as they happen, whether concerts, sports, award, stage productions, conference, etc. We’re converting Prime Time (7 pm – 10 pm) on weekends to Realtime.
The Realtime service is powered by a specially designed outside broadcast van, the first of its kind for delivering simultaneous live contents on television and online. We have also acquired another IP streaming technology called TVU pack. By offering live entertainment content, advertisers are guaranteed more viewers Promoters can begin to make money from viewership of their events generated though rights for live streaming. The broadcast channel can also cover operational costs of those live events.
How prepared are you to play in the premier league of independent Nigerian TV station owners?
We take it a step at a time. There is so much to do but it’s one after the other. With God on our side, we shall get there. Insha Allah.
– TIKI MYVNN-CHUKWURAH AND JOSHUA SHOBIYE