On Monday Joe Muganda in a meeting on the third floor of the Nation Building in a meeting with staff announced he will be leaving the giant media group. His announcement came as huge shocker as people like me expected him to stay a bit longer at the helm of what is the biggest media house cooperation.
He becomes of the shortest serving Nation Media CEO’s only serving for two and a half years compared to his predecessors Linus Gitahi who served for 8 years before hanging his boots to dry in 2015 and Wilfred Kiboro who served the group for 13 years. Joe Muganda picked it up from there in 2015.
Joe is a well known operative who has worked in management positions and his appointment to the helm of NMG was not a major surprise. He was the Managing Director of East African Breweries and held senior management positions in British American Tobacco and Unilever before deciding to join Nation Media Group as its CEO.
The Bachelor of Science degree holder in Economics, Accounting and Financial Management holder from the Burkingham University and holder of an MBA from Leicester University. He had no background in working in media but he was still chosen to become a CEO at a media company.
His first thing to do was a restructuring of the company when he took the stage. This saw the exit of heavy weights like Ciru Muriuki, Anto Neo Soul, Obinna and Njambi Koikai being forced to leave the station in 2015. TV also faced the axe with the likes of Sheila Mwanyigha also being shown the door.
2016 saw the closure of Q FM and Nation FM and the retrenchment of staff which were working in the radio sector. This was due to the reducing revenue of advertisements. The restructuring road did not end there with another retrenchment of staff being planned in January 2017.
The restricting did not however focus on the retrenchment of workers only but a new structure to the editorial team. The changes saw the introduction of an executive editor and many other offices.
The main objective of the restructuring to make sure the online first agenda at NMG was met and progressed nicely.
The group went on to re launch the Business Daily which is a leading business paper in the country. This led to the consolidation of the business desk of both TV and print to enhance its performance. In an interview with Wallace Kantai he said “The redesigned newspaper, a publication of the Nation Media Group (NMG), puts more emphasis on story-telling devices such as graphics, while keeping text short but comprehensive.”
The team has been experiencing a lot of less and less and cutting budgets. He has been keen on making sure that there is little look at the way the company has been spending its money. Media Critic had ran a story of how he however shed of this tag during the election season and approved all budgets proposed by the teams. The budgets which included studio sets, hiring of 290 reporters in each constituency and many other raft of measures to give wall to wall coverage of the election.
Nation Nyanza Edition
The introduction of the Daily Nation the Nyanza Edition is something the CEO also oversaw. The region based paper worked its way to make sure they have done the edition. The paper’s main agenda was to make sure that they have articulated the agenda of the local people. During its launch the CEO said “We realise that great debates are triggered nationally, in the villages and regionally hence the need to ensure we pass information to people the way they naturally consume it,”
The group has received a lot of support and good leadership from Joe Muganda who will be leaving the team at the end of January. He was able to revive it from its streak of losses in 2015 and 2016. This year the company registered a huge increament in its profits and it will be interesting to see if his successor will keep doing a good job.