Two Nigerian artists has emerged amongst the top ten Art Masters of Africa.
The Art Master Africa competition was launched in 2017 by BIC as part of its commitment to encourage talent to showcase their creativity and create a piece of art, using the famous BIC Ball Pen.
The two Nigerian artists named Odaro Franklin Osaivbie and Andrew Nathan emerged as Third and Fourth in the competition with their art pieces, ‘Entranced’ and ‘Value’ respectively.
For their effort and proudly presenting Nigerian talents, they were rewarded with a cash prize of USD500 and USD300 respectively amongst other branded gift items at an event held at the BIC head office in Lagos, Nigeria.
Guillaume Groues, general manager at BIC Nigeria, said: “We are delighted to be present in Nigeria today – a young population, and the number one economy and pan market in Africa. We are investing in the country, from job creation to youth empowerment, to supporting education and environmental sustainability. We have a lot more to achieve in Nigeria in the years to come and we look forward to being close to our consumers on our journey in this prosperous market.”
He said BIC, as a world leader in stationery, lighters, and shavers is committed to the Nigerian market through key community-focused initiatives in education and capacity development.
Groues said that the company has been in Nigeria for over 40 years, and its products have become a household necessity in the country.
In 2019, the company further expanded its portfolio by acquiring the stationery brand, Lucky. Today, BIC has a presence in Nigeria through manufacturing and commercial operations creating jobs for over 500 Nigerians. Over 90 percent of the workforce in the BIC factory in Nigeria are females, shedding light on the company’s commitment to diversity, equality, and inclusion.
He noted that since its investment and expansion in the market, BIC has impacted the communities it operates in across Nigeria. Last year alone, BIC reached 25,900 students and 1,200 teachers in 233 schools through its school activation program which aims to support teachers to get their job done by providing them with the necessary writing instruments and material.
Commenting further, the general manager said that during the Covid-19 outbreak in 2020, BIC donated 28,000 writing and coloring items to the International Organisation for Migration (IOM) to support mental health and psychosocial support (MHPSS) for internally displaced people (IDPs). Similarly, 100,000 units of ball pens and 1,000 teaching aids were donated to Save the Children.
According to him, Through its BIC Cristal Pen Awards programme which recognizes educators for their creative and innovative approaches to education, BIC recognised Opeifa Olasukanmi last year, a Nigerian teacher with over a decade of experience and passion for English literacy.
Opeifa was awarded BIC stationery products and a EUR 5,000 grant to his school. These initiatives stem from the company’s commitment to improving learning conditions for 250 million students by the year 2025. To date, BIC has impacted 161 million students.
He further said that BIC is committed to sustainability and its goal to improve its environmental footprint by 2025.
“As part of its ‘Writing the Future, Together’ sustainable development program which was launched in 2018. The programme aims to drive BIC to achieve its five commitments – improving our environmental and societal product footprint, acting against climate change, providing our employees with a safe workplace, making the supply chain more responsible and reinforcing commitment to education,” Groues said.