Ugwu who was the CEO of iROKING…a sister company to iROKOtv was dismissed from the organization for an alleged “gross misconduct.” Jessica Hope, Global Communications Officer for Iroko Partners, today issued a press release:
“We can confirm that Michael Ugwu is no longer the CEO of iROKING and has left the company. He was dismissed earlier this month with immediate effect for gross misconduct.
It came to light that, whilst under contract and salary of iROKING, Michael Ugwu set up and launched his own digital music platform, in direct competition with iROKING. This is an unequivocal breach of the robust non-compete and confidentiality clause he signed when he joined the iROKO team.
We will not be divulging any further details on the subject matter for legal reasons.
A number of the iROKING staff have also been dismissed on the grounds of gross misconduct. This action, alongside the dismissal of Michael Ugwu, was taken by the iROKO Management team in order to protect the intellectual property and reputation of our online music platform, as well as our artists’ work.
As part of an organisation-wide restructure, we have decided to streamline the iROKING team based in Lagos, and have now redistributed a number of the core tasks across our global teams in London and New York. These changes have been made in order to make the strategic and day-to-day running of iROKING more effective and productive.
Those who left the company have been given a generous six weeks’ severance pay, which is 50% more than stated in their employee contracts.
iROKING, as one of Nigeria’s leading digital music platforms, continues to showcase some of the country’s most prolific and exciting artists. Since launch, we have recorded over 350 Million YouTube hits for our artists and we have over 1.1 Million users downloading tracks from our online and mobi platforms every month. We remain committed to our artists and our users and continue on our mission to support and develop digital distribution for Nigerian artists. We expect to announce a new CEO for iROKING in the coming months.”
iROKOtv is the market leader in the Nollywood online streaming service segment; while iROKING is tasked with creating a viable digital distribution model for Nigerian music. Both companies are owned by Jason Njoku’s Iroko Partners.