The 2020 edition of the Big Brother Naija (BBNaija) reality TV show will boost the Nigerian economy by about N2 billion, according to a financial analysis by industry insiders.
It was learnt that this stems from the increased budgetary allocation by Multichoice, producers of the show, to ensure strict compliance with safety protocols amid the coronavirus pandemic.
The investments in the fifth season of the BBNaija have soared to N2 billion as a result of capital intensive projects necessary for the successful hosting of the show.
The projects included the addition of 250sqm to the 1800sqm BBNaija house, provision of furniture, technical equipment and other safety systems.
The costs are exclusive of production, marketing, talent performances and other sunk costs absorbed by the pre-existing BBNaija house.
Huge sums of money have been expended on items such as building design permits, civil engineering works, landscape management, heating ventilation and air conditioning as well as mechanical and electrical systems upgrade.
Similar outlays have been made to ensure the upgrade of acoustics to studio specifications, purchase of power generators, water purification, information technology facilities and adaptation of the Big Brother House to conform with COVID-19 protocols, according to an insider.
A recent report by Accenture showed that Multichoice invested $428 million between 2015 and 2019 in local content production, the larger slice of which many believe went into the production of the reality show.
The show has generated direct and indirect employment opportunities for Nigerians in marketing, public relations, production and sponsorship, with many on Multichoice’s monthly payroll.
Also involved are hundreds of photographers, disc jockeys, interior decorators and an assortment of other small and medium sized business owners contracted as vendors to supply food, clothes, toiletries to the house for the duration of the show.
This year’s edition of the reality show had earlier raised concerns among viewers considering that it is holding at about the same time when the world is grappling with the COVID-19 pandemic.
The show’s organisers, however, addressed the concerns by revealing measures put in place towards protecting participants from the novel coronavirus both before and during the show’s run time
The season five of the reality TV show, which started on Sunday, is expected to run for 10 weeks, with N85 million grand prize up for grabs for the winner.