The Safaricom Marathon 2006, one of the toughest races in the world that was co-sponsored by BenQ-Siemens, the innovative mobile communication solutions provider, saw the highest number of 750 participants in the event’s history, running at an altitude of 1,800 metres in the harsh African climate deep in Kenya’s Lewa Wildlife Conservancy to raise funds for community development and conservation projects.
Organised by Safaricom, Kenya’s leading mobile operator, the seventh edition of the 21-km Marathon that took place on June 24, was won by Joseph Mwaniki. Four-time Boston Marathon champion and former world champion, Catherine Ndereba won the half marathon. She also visited and signed autographs at the camp put up at the venue by BenQ-Siemens, a major co-sponsor of the Marathon.
Najeeb Kazi, Vice President, Sales and Marketing, BenQ-Siemens said: “BenQ-Siemens is happy to have lent its support to this successful edition of the Safaricom Marathon 2006 which drew the highest number of participants since its inception, not only from Kenya but also from Dubai, Iraq, South Africa, UK, US, NZ, Australia and Spain.”
“Our support for the endurance race is in keeping with the objectives of our Corporate Social Responsibility policy and demonstrates BenQ-Siemens’ commitment to ensuring the sustainable development of local communities, helping the preservation of dwindling stocks of wildlife, spreading education and providing better medical services for the people of Africa,” he added.
The race, led by star athletes Ndereba, marathon world record holder Paul Tergat and blind para-Olympic champion Henry Wanyoike, was supported by leading multinational companies and aimed at raising Ksh 20 million towards funding for needy projects in education, health, wildlife conservation and community development across Kenya. The event’s six earlier editions have helped to raise a total of Ksh 60 million.
BenQ-Siemens combines BenQ’s multimedia expertise and award-winning designs with Siemens’ engineering heritage and intellectual property to offer new models to the market faster than in the past in order to meet high customer expectations and capitalise on the region’s increasing mobile penetration rate. The company has carved a distinct niche for itself in the industry with the launch of a total of 12 new phones this season.
The company has recently launched five new models--S88, S68, EF81, E61 and EL71--from its range of premium, trendy mobile phones in the UAE and Bahrain and is looking to increase its market share across the GCC and in Jordan, Egypt, Morocco, South Africa, Tanzania, Uganda and the Democratic Republic of Congo.
BenQ-Siemens’ wedge-shaped E61 model is a complete entertainment provider featuring a built-in music player for MP3 files and other formats with dedicated music buttons on the upper rim; a 2x/4x digital zoom VGA camera and two preinstalled games. Its ergonomic form and high-quality finish have earned it the iF-Design-Awards 2006, making it a trendy fashion accessory.
BenQ-Siemens’ elegant S88 model too has won the iF Design Awards 2006 and features an integrated 2.0 mega pixel, auto focus camera with a 16x digital zoom, a built-in editor, a high performance video camera, an MP3 music player and LED photo light that takes clear pictures even in poor light conditions. Photos and videos show to brilliant advantage on its 2.0-inch Active Matrix OLED display.
The 16.5 mm ultra-slim EL71 slider phone is a user-friendly model that incorporates a 2-inch QVGA display that glows in 262,144 colours, a 1.3 megapixel LED photo light digital camera, a music player for MP3 and ACC++ music files, and accessories such as a headset Bluetooth clip, a Car Kit Bluetooth and a Music Cable IHM-100 that allows the mobile to be connected to any hi-fi system.
The stylish 13 mm triband S68 model focuses on quality and clarity, performing basic functions of mobile communication dominated by voice telephony. It features a 1.8 inch transflexive colour display, a dual speaker system, an integrated hands free function and 64-tone ring tones. The 15.9 mm thin, high-speed EF81 folding mobile comes with full UMTS functionality with two large colour displays and a swivelling camera for video telephony, 2-megapixel camera and an integrated media player.
“Our latest range of slim, elegant and feature-packed mobile phones combines supreme mobile technology with high lifestyle appeal, serving as efficient communication tools and fashion accessories at the same time. We are geared to significantly increase our market share in the Middle East and Africa by offering mobile devices that are consistent with latest market trends and are in line with consumer demands and aspirations,” Kazi concluded.