For more than a year, reigning Mr Ugly William Masvinu sent SOS messages to companies pleading with marketers to take advantage of his rugged looks in their advertisement material. Mr Ugly argued he had potential of catalysing marketing campaigns and would make any target market realise the beauty of products and services through his ugliness.
His plight has finally been heard and the answer has come with a bonus.
Masvinu has signed an endorsement deal with a company selling agrochemicals in addition to landing a role in a new drama.
The deal becomes his first major marketing assignment after a minor role he did for a clothing shop last year.
In an advert with the catch line “Tauya Kuipa”, Shalom Agrochemicals presents Masvinu, with his new “fake bald” haircut and serious face, displaying one of their products.
Although both parties refused to disclose the amount involved in the deal, Masvinu said he is a happy man because someone has shown confidence in him.
“I had lost hope because I thought companies did not have interest in working with me because of my ugliness.
“I am happy to have this deal. This is my first big deal with a company.
“I am earning good income out of it and I am hoping to clinch more deals with other companies,” he said.
Agrochemicals managing director Justin Nherera said Masvinu was the right person to use on their advert.
“We wanted someone with serious looks to show our seriousness and Ma- svinu was the right person.
“We are confident our strategy will work,” said Nherera.
In his other achievement, Masvinu is the main actor in a 60-minute drama titled “Fuse Yatsva”, which is about the importance of love in a marriage.
He stars as Baba Chipo, a senior member of an extended family troubled with domestic disputes.
Masvinu said the drama was the first step in an acting career that he expects to expand next year.
He, however, complained that the drama had already been pirated and he was unlikely to get much in returns.
“We were hoping to get paid for our roles in the drama after sales of the product but it appears we will have very little from it.
“Pirated copies of the drama are already in the streets and it will be difficult to sell original ones,” said Masvinu.
“However, this drama will introduce me to the acting field and I am looking forward to another career after the Mr Ugly tenure.
“Organisers of the pageant might not give me another chance to contest in the next edition and I will have something else to do in the arts industry.”