Bharti Airtel in conjunction with Trace International has crowned Benjamin Webi as the winner of the Airtel TRACE Music Star competition, Kenya edition.
The song competition which started on 5th October 2014 is the first of its kind that gave an opportunity for thousands of Kenyan youth to compete by simply calling in a short code number to submit their entries.
The fiercely contested finale, which garnered a record viewership, saw Phyllis Mwihaki come in at a close second with Trina Mungai bagging the third position.
Benjamin Webi took home the first prize of over KES 2.7 million (Euro 25,000) in cash and an iPhone 6 Plus, while Phyllis who came in at a close second took home KES 100,000 and an iPhone 6 Plus. Trina Mungai wrapped up the top three with a cash prize of KES 50,000 and an iPhone 6.
With the win, Webi now gets a special ticket to represent Kenya against other contestants from 12 other Adfrican countries in the Airtel TRACE Music Star Pan African competition which is set to take place in March this year. The opportunity gives him a chance to compete for the overall grand prize which comprises of a recording deal with Kon Live, a distributed label through Universal Music Group, and an intense mentorship programme with Akon in the United States of America.
While expressing his excitement, Webi said: “When I saw the Airtel TRACE Music Star competition advert on TV, I didn’t hesitate to enter. I didn’t expect to get to this level knowing that it would be that competitive but thanks to the judges, thousands of Kenyans who voted for me, I made it; I am the first winner of the Airtel TRACE Music Star Kenya edition.
“I cannot wait to get to the next level, the Airtel TRACE Music Star Pan-African competition. This will be about competing with different talented youth from 12 different African countries, giving it my best with the hope of becoming the winner to clinch the recording deal. I am super excited about this opportunity. One thing is for sure, I will not disappoint the thousands of fans who voted and believed in me, I will not disappoint you. I intend to put my win to good use and conquer the Pan-African competition,” he added.
While congratulating Webi and the six finalists for their hard work, Airtel Kenya CEO Adil El Youssefi said: “Airtel TRACE Music Star is all about making dreams come true and giving aspiring stars a chance to shine! At Airtel, we are passionate about creating credible platforms that celebrate and reward young talented people. We would like to thank TRACE TV for their support that enabled us to showcase the wealth of talent that exists within our country. The fans voted, the judges loved him and the audience applauded! Congratulations to Webi and we wish him the very best in the next level.”
On his part, TRACE Co-Founder, Chairman and CEO Olivier Laouchez said: “First of all, I want to thank all contestants because even though there is one winner, Kenya won tonight. The talent of music in this country is amazing. I am really and extremely happy with the quality of this competition! Congratulations to all the finalists. Thanks to Airtel and all the partners who made this happen.”
The Pan-African competitions will be held in March this year where the overall winner will walk away with a prize of 30, 000 Euros, a recording deal with Kon Live, a distributed label through Universal Music Group, and an intense mentorship Programme with Akon in the United States of America