MCL digital transformation bid wins parent firm’s nod

Friday June 24 2022
Zou studio

Mwananchi Communications Limited (MCL) Online Content editor Zourha Malisa explains how the firm’s studio operates to Nation Media Group’s Board of Directors chairman Wilfred Kiboro (right) and MCL Board of Directors members at the company’s headquarters at Tabata Relini in Dar es Salaam yesterday. PHOTO | SUNDAY GEORGE

By Jacob Mosenda

Dar es Salaam. The Nation Media Group (NMG) has pledged to support Mwananchi Communications Limited (MCL) digital transformation journey as the subsidiary firm launches a new tagline in line with its growth aspirations.

MCL has embarked on a journey, which, among other things, aims to sustain its core business of informing the public by gradually transforming from being mainly a print media to one driven by content generation, a move fueled by the ongoing digital disruption across the globe.

“This situation, among other things, compelled the MCL leadership to initiate a change programme in August 2021, a move that involved all our staff with a focus on four Ps (Purpose, People, Processes and Product,” said MCL managing director Bakari Machumu.


Mr Machumu was briefing NMG board chairman Wilfred Kiboro and members of the NMG and MCL boards of directors when they toured MCL headquarters at Tabata, Dar es Salaam yesterday.

Mr Machumu noted that in its transformation journey, the company has come up with taglines that show the main purpose of MCL in serving its customers within Tanzania and beyond the borders.

“We have come up with two taglines to guide our company; internal one (Building Together) and also the one that reflects our main purpose through the service we provide nationally and how we intend to support the country and its people (Empowering the Nation),” he said.

The tagline (Empowering the Nation) communicates MCL’s intention to give information through its news space to help Tanzanians make informed decisions in their day to day activities as well as support the government in serving the people through content creation and dissemination.

He also noted that the various internal and external challenges that the company--the publisher of The Citizen, Mwananchi and MwanaSpoti newspapers also runs a YouTube channel (Mwananchi digital) and its social media platforms--led to a new strategy for change (digital transformation).

Speaking at the event, NMG board of director chairman Kiboro commended MCL for the positive changes that have continued to be productive and promised that they were ready to help the Tanzanian firm achieve its goal of becoming a full-fledged digital company.

He said now the habit of reading newspapers was changing as many young people receive information through gadgets like smartphones while emphasizing that it was not that they did not read traditional newspapers but their habits have changed with the times.

“So we have to put in place a strategy to engage more youth in our digital space so that we can adapt to the changes… in this I congratulate MCL for showing the interest and I promise that NMG will be ready to support you so you can achieve this goal which will further improve staff interests…,” he said.

Dr Kiboro also commended MCL for remaining resilient during the difficult times in which the media industry and other commercial entities found themselves making difficult decisions with the aim of trying to protect their existence.

“Now, work so that you can pay for yourselves and make the salaries change, as this is your company,” he said, explaining how he had a difficult time when his flower business, which employed more than 300 people, stalled during the Covid-19.

“No plane was transporting flowers abroad, I suffered losses but the biggest challenge I found was the way I felt sorry for my employees who also had families and needed to be paid. So we have to work to make the situation for workers better,” said Dr Kiboro.

For his part, MCL board of directors chairman Leonard Mususa while commending the company for good work done despite the challenges witnessed in recent years ago said that MCL was bound to lead the transformation of the media industry in the country.

“To that end we saw fit to come up with a strategy to enable us to lead this necessary digital transformation considering that the readability of newspapers has actually decreased…,” he said.

“Congratulations for what you have been doing. For real you are doing a very good job and here in Tanzania, we are actually leading,” he noted.