Staring down challenges… and winning

This year Africa’s biggest marketing conference, the Nedbank IMC, is all about challenges and how to keep pace with an industry constantly catching up to change. In emerging markets, like those on the African continent, these challenges are often intensified by socio-political intricacies, financial constraints and under-developed technologies.

And yet the marketing and branding opportunities are huge, especially in the digital space. The continent is on the cusp of a (largely) youth-driven digital revolution – a young population armed with smart phones and a hunger for knowledge. Recent predictions indicate that more than half of Sub-Saharan Africa is set to be connected on mobile by 2025 (according to a Global System for Mobile Communications Association (GSMA) study, 2022).

If anyone knows how to take on challenges in this landscape and win, it is Steve Babaeko, CEO/chief creative officer of X3M Ideas. Steve, one of five international speakers presenting at the conference, will unpack his chosen topic of ‘How to look challenges in the eye and stare them down to win.’

Steve Babaeko – a name synonymous with Nigeria’s creative industry and a revered entrepreneur – has an unyielding resilience and belief that with challenges come opportunities and innovation. His ‘never say die’ attitude has helped him overcome many difficulties and build a globally recognised, creative empire that spans multiple genres and countries.

Babaeko’s accolades and recognition from both Africa and the world are numerous. From being Nigeria and West Africa’s first ever Cannes Lions winner to appearing in Adweek’s Top 100 Creatives in the World, as well as having X3M Ideas emerging as the African Agency of the Year at the African Cristal Awards in Morocco in 2023.

The conference theme this year calls on delegates to challenge themselves to keep learning, keep leading. And this is precisely what Steve has done to realise his goal of building the first truly African agency. “I want to be remembered as the man who contributed a little in making the future generation’s life a little easier.”

Babaeko’s success is a testament to the potential of African creativity and innovation. Book your ticket now to hear more about his inspiring journey.

The Nedbank IMC will be held at the Focus Rooms, Modderfontein Johannesburg on 19 September 2024.

In -person tickets sold out. Book your online ticket and join the in-person waiting list to upgrade if a space becomes available.

Virtual tickets priced at R1,499 (excl VAT).
For more information visit:

The annual Nedbank IMC Conference is Africa’s foremost integrated marketing conference. The Integrated Marketing Council (IMC) believes that Marketing is Business© and that marketing deserves its place at the boardroom table. This conference has more CMOs, senior marketers and agency leaders attending than any other in Africa and is relevant to anyone in the business of communication.

One day of 15-minute presentations (with some exceptions), the conference is known for its hard-hitting global agenda with no sales pitches.

The Nedbank IMC is presented in association with MASA, in collaboration with the ACA, in partnership with the DMASA and is endorsed by the IAB. The 2024 theme is ‘Challenge Yourself. Keep Learning. Keep Leading’ and is relevant to anyone in the business of communication.