Access Bank South Africa launched at MGG’s studios

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In 2020, Grobank entered a transaction with the Access Bank Group. Access Bank invested and acquired a controlling stake in Grobank and, in 2021, rebranded the business as Access Bank South Africa, intending to become the world’s most respected African bank.


The official launch of Access Bank South Africa, orchestrated by Blue Moon Corporate Communications, was hosted at MGG Productions’ Studio B in Johannesburg. The hybrid event, held on 14 June 2021, captivated audiences with a sensational showcase of vibrant African design, the décor and LED screens all aligned to Access Bank’s orange, blue and green colour palette.

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Cue, Sarah Gill from Blue Moon, who has worked with Jacobus Janisch Le Roux, Project Manager at MGG, for the past twenty years. It’s a Sunday morning and she takes a few minutes out from the Access Bank set up to talk about the launch and how events have changed over the past fifteen months. “Blue Moon has two distinct divisions. We offer employee alignment and internal comms and we have our events division too. At a time when employees need to feel connected to their business and to one another, we have leveraged digital communications and virtual events to communicate everything our clients need us to talk about,” she comments.  “I started doing small Zoom broadcasts and hybrid events as soon as the film industry opened up in 2020, and we’ve seen a major shift in eventing in the last year. We don’t do events anymore; we do television broadcasts! It’s a lot less expensive for the client but of course, with broadcasting, there’s always that distance separating the audience from the experience, and it’s that much more difficult to make people feel emotional about something they are watching passively on a screen rather than being part of a live event. A space like the one MGG has created goes a long way in helping that. Because MGG comes from the live production industry and not broadcast, they have that experiential events mindset already and an ethos that works really well.”

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When companies have worked together for such a long time, there is a sense of trust and expectation, and for Jacobus it is all about relationships. One of the first services MGG offers in production is a Vectorworks rendering, which in this case enables Sarah and her client to see the set design and make any changes as needed. At the end of the day, it ensures that what they see is what they get.


There are also other personal touches. From the moment clients walk through the MGG doors, they are made to feel secure, especially during pandemic times. A newly installed computer system allows each visitor to digitally complete their details and the system then sends a barcode to them, to be used for future access. An intelligent temperature scanner is also more accurate than handheld thermometers.

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For the launch, MGG created a fresh-looking venue by emptying out Studio B, which was formerly home to a massive performing stage. Prolyte trussing was used to form a structure to house a large Absen Screen (positioned in the centre) for the backdrop and content, with three additional strip screens placed on either side. Lighting designer Pierre van Wyk and his assistant, Sipho Kekana had a great lighting rig to work with! Robe fixtures included 2 BMFL Blades, 9 LEDWash 600, 6 DL4S Profile, 16 Spikie, 14 CycFX8 and 8 Pointes. The Claypaky range comprised of 6 Scenius Unicos, 4 B-EYE K10, 8 B-EYE K20, 10 Sharpy and 6 Mythos. Also on the rig were 3 Showline SL Nitros 510C and a Le Maitre MVS Hazer with control via a grandmA2 light console and NPU.

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The production, which was split into two events, was streamed on a custom platform.  The employer launch was streamed to 150 people online and attended by 20 executives seated at beautifully appointed tables. The event comprised of three performances, three speakers and presentations. “We had to be mindful of what the live audience were experiencing and how the production would be relayed once going out to stream,” shares Sarah. “We created content to support the speaker which was projected onto the giant LED screens and panels as the backdrop to the production.” Once the employee launch was over, the studio was reconfigured to host an afternoon media launch, a shortened and more business orientated version without any performances.

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“I think the MGG team has been absolutely brilliant in what its achieved,” added Sarah. “It’s a stroke of genius to add the studios to their premises. With two versatile spaces, it’s a complete offering including the rig. MGG is able to adapt the set and design according to what we need, make recommendations and advise… they even take your calls at 10 o clock at night! There are other studios out there, but we have a long-standing relationship with MGG, and it’s always about relationships. You go to the people you feel safe with and who you can moan at, laugh, cry and work collaboratively with, because the respect is there from both sides.”