How did you spend Valentine's Day? I didn't see many images yesterday that made me drool or want to join the "God, when?" gang, but I saw the exchange between Airtel and MTN. Who else saw it? You can check it out here.
I was surprised, but could this be the new Nigeria? Or are they putting something together for us? Consider a collaboration between these companies. No, right? You don't see that coming, too, huh?
Could it be due to Starlink's recent launch? 😂 A little competition can make two rivals join forces to compete with a “bigger threat.” 😂 Nah, I'm kidding.
I care less about what motivated those graphics because they were somewhat inspiring. It reminds me to love everyone — rival or friend, hater or lover. So, reader, still in the spirit of Valentine's Day, please help me share this link with EVERYONE.
Here’s what I’ve got for you today:
- Why more people would give office romance a shot in 2023
- Online dating and romance scams
- Telkom's restructuring to affect 15% of its staff
- Otter.ai launches OtterPilot
Why more people would give office romance a shot in 2023
What are your thoughts on office romance? Did you see or celebrate any couple expressing love to each other at work yesterday?
I've seen a few people on Twitter who married after meeting at work. I admire that because I don’t think I can date anyone I work with. Can you?
Remember Rihanna’s We Found Love? 😂 Well, love is everywhere, even in unexpected places.
However, workplace relationships are often frowned upon for ethical and legal reasons. From Oluwanifemi’s research, people only believe in them if it has worked for them or others.
Global companies like World Bank Group, Google, and Facebook, which make their employment policies public, don't frown at workplace relationships but have exemptions to prevent friction.
For example, the World Bank Group prohibits spouses from working in the same department/division/unit or having a reporting relationship.
Google expects early disclosure of any romantic or sexual relationships between co-workers to HR to avoid conflicts of interest and prohibits any direct or indirect reporting relationships.
But the story might be changing with startups adopting a flexible work culture. If you’re wondering what that means, find out here: Why more people would give office romance a shot in 2023
Online dating and romance scams
Do you know what dating was like before European colonisers arrived in Africa?
No, there was nothing like dating, but there were arranged marriages.
Finding a partner was frequently a community-wide effort, including gift exchanges and family negotiations. In many African cultures, arranged marriages were common because they preserved social order and cultural norms.
Over the years, technological advancements, increased Internet and smartphone penetration, and shifting attitudes towards dating and relationships have contributed to the popularity of online dating.
However, online dating on the continent was adopted slowly due to most people’s scepticism about the concept, believing it to be impersonal and lacking in genuine human connection.
Founded in the United States in 1995 and later expanded to some African countries, Match.com was one of the first online dating websites to gain popularity on the continent.
While online dating has aided in removing historical, social, and cultural barriers, it can expose users to privacy invasions and scams, raise their expectations for romantic relationships, and leave them disappointed.
Also known as an online dating scam, a romance scam occurs when an online criminal dupes someone they met online into believing they are in a romantic relationship with them.
In my latest article, I tell you how you can protect yourself when using online dating platforms, including social media. You can read it here: Online dating is changing how Africans find love, leading to an increase in romance scams
Telkom's restructuring to affect 15% of its staff
South African telco, Telkom Group, has announced that it will take formal legal action to restructure the company, according to section 189 of the Labour Relations Act.
The telco claims the restructuring will affect 15% of its workforce, impacting 1,770 jobs, mainly in business and affiliates divisions, to guarantee the company’s viability.
According to the company, “As the group manages the delicate migration of revenue between old to new technologies, it is challenged with managing the costs associated with the different technologies, the competitiveness and sustainability of the group.”
What's more, Telkom CEO, Serame Taukobong said the impact of sustained load-shedding has put pressure on the company’s costs.
Sidebar Alert: The company has released its financial results for Q4 2022.
Telkom saw a 2.3% increase in revenue to R11 billion ($614,000,321) but a 13.5% decline in earnings before interest, taxes, depreciation, and amortisation (EBITDA) to R2.5 billion ($482,998,500), highlighting the company's ongoing struggles with profitability and bottom-line growth.
Consequently, Telkom plans to implement cost-saving programmes, the benefits of which will become sustainable over the following six to eighteen months, easing cost pressures and boosting the Group's medium-term profitability.
Telkom added that in addition to cost-cutting measures, the Group plans to raise an additional R1 billion ($55,773,600) by the end of 2023 to lessen the impact of frontloaded working capital investments and ongoing pressure on free cash flow.
Otter.ai launches OtterPilot
AI-powered voice transcription service, Otter.ai, is introducing a new AI meeting assistant called OtterPilot.
OtterPilot is a meeting automation software designed to help professionals save time and increase meeting productivity. It will automatically send an AI-generated summary of key meeting topics to those invited to the meeting or directly to an Otter group.
It distributes automated summaries with hyperlinks to moments via email. All users will have access to the Automated Summary.
The new meeting assistant can also take screenshots of slides shared during virtual meetings, allowing professionals to easily search and recall important slides in the transcript to remember what was
Otter claims to have recorded over one billion and transcribed more than 100 million meetings by 2021.
Given how popular AI has become in recent months, particularly since the release of ChatGPT, it's not surprising that Otter has released a new AI-powered meeting assistant to complement its transcription service.
The company says the new features will be available to users on all plans in the coming days.
In case you missed it
- Moroccan foodtech, Terrraa, raises $1.5 million pre-seed round
- Nigerian insurtech startup Curacel has raised a $3 million seed to expand into North Africa
- Treepz launches in Kenya on the back of a $1.2 million investment
- Kenyan fintech startup, Power, secures $3 million in seed funding to enter other African markets
What I’m reading and watching
- Naira swap: Emefiele insists there is no need to shift February 10 deadline, says POS agents charging over N200 will go to jail
- The Pros and Cons of Having a Work Spouse
- Why Having Fun Is the Secret to a Healthier Life
- Aluu Four: The mob killing that shocked Nigeria
- I Have No Jaw - But Still Found True Love
- Applications for the inaugural Google for Startups Accelerator, African Women Founders Africa Program, are now open. You can apply online before February 20, 2023.
- Applications are now open for NAMIP's Sustainability Challenge for Nigerian media. Winners will be awarded up to $50,000 for their project and join NAMIP’s innovation and capacity building program that extends up till 2024. Apply here.
- If you are a software engineer, creative designer, product manager, design researcher, or a techie looking for an internship role, please, check out this website.
Have a wonderful Wednesday.
Victoria Fakiya for Techpoint Africa.