Netflix’s entrance into the Nigerian market is less than a month old, but Nigerian streaming service giant, IrokoTV, is already making major moves.
The company just announced that it has signed a new investment deal with CANAL + and Kinnevik AB, to the tune of $19 million (about N3.7 billion), which would allow it pursue its plans to expand aggressively across the African continent.
According to reports, the investment will be channelled towards local content financing and production, as well as its product and engineering teams in Lagos and New York.
The new deal is a big win for African cinema, as IrokoTv is said to be ready to invest in up to 300 hours of original content, as well as enable it build on its already extensive catalogue, making it arguably one of the largest libraries of local African content.
Speaking on the development, founder and CEO of the company, Jason Njoku told AFP “We’re taking Nollywood content to Africa.
“We have plans to dub content into French, Swahili, Zulu. So, we’ll stand apart from Netflix in terms of localisation of content. We are going narrow and deep into local content.
“However, Netflix entering into the African market is really exciting, as it reveals the huge potential of the market. For us, we’re flattered to be mentioned in the same breath as them.”
There’s really no need mentioning that this deal is a big win for Nollywood, and the move towards content acquisition is a strategic one on IrokoTv’s part to lock down its share of the African market.
For now, we can only speculate as to how much impact the announcement of this new deal will have, but we are sure to find out in the coming months.