To be fired from a job can be very traumatising. Many people, especially those who had not anticipated such a development, easily fall into depression or worst, suicidal thoughts. However, there are those who refuse to despair despite the odds and proceed to venture into the uncertain world of business.
In this article WoK brings you the story of one John Marete who was fired from Citizen TV and ended up starting his own media house.
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John Marete was born and raised in Meru county where he spent the better part of his childhood and teenage life. He later relocated to Nairobi to pursue a degree in Mass Media and film production at Kenyatta University. After graduating in 2010, it took a year before he secured a job at Citizen TV.
His passion and determination to be successful saw the journalist appointed as the Head of Camera at Citizen TV at the tail end of 2014. He worked for two years only to be fired in February 2016 alongside a dozen other employees.
Launching his first Station
Finding himself jobless, the journalist decided to do what he was experienced in. He conducted a thorough market study for a period of five months, and this is what informed him to found his TV station.
The idea was to start Weru TV – a station that would primarily focus on the Meru culture and attract viewership from the local Mt Kenya population. In December 2016, he finally launched Weru TV which quickly became a market leader in the region edging out Baite TV and Meru TV.
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Transforming into a Media House
Following the Success of Weru TV, Marete went ahead to launch a radio station named – Weru FM in June 2017. The station, which broadcasts in the Ameru language, targeted the locals who didn’t own a television set. The station launched with a huge bang after assembling popular media personalities in the region like Rita Kanorio and Makena Materi from Muuga FM. Currently the station is the most listened vernacular radio station in Meru county.
Having captured the better part of the Mt Kenya region, Marete didn’t stop there. In April 2021, he launched Mutongoi TV – a TV Channel that broadcasts in the Kamba vernacular language. The station which is based in Machakos targets mainly the local population drawn from the lower Eastern region where Marete’s wife comes from.
The station also became a success among the locals since news, entertainment, health matters and agriculture are all conveyed in the vernacular language. It is available on Signet platforms in Nairobi, Mombasa, Kitui, Machakos, Makueni and Taita Taveta Counties.
And John Marete was not stopping. In December 2021 he launched Mutongoi FM – a vernacular station that broadcasts in the Kamba language. Since its inception, the station has brought huge competition to the old and established radio stations in the region such as Mbaitu FM, Musyi FM and Syokimau FM. It’s currently considered as the fastest growing Kamba Vernacular station in the entire Eastern Province of Kenya.