Africa’s biggest pay-TV company, MultiChoice, is looking to focus its investment more in airing Afrrica-made shows, in collaboration with local producers and actors for the next two years.
According to the Chief Executive Officer (CEO), Calvo Mawela, the new decision would help the company reduce their overall cost as well as help save more, given the expense of acquiring rights to air foreign shows in the US and many foreign countries.
This, he explained, has further influenced the company’s drive to pay subscribers of its streaming platform, Showmax, 68% of their subscription in part, due to the “doubling-down” on local content offering.
According to Mawela, making African content and paying actors and staff in local currencies comes at a fraction of the cost of buying dollar-denominated international content.
Many stories can be redeployed in different African countries and still resonate, adding to savings.Calvo Mawela, CEO, MultiChoice
African content rising recognition
Multichoice recently captivated a southern eastern African audience when it showed “The River,” a South African-produced show about affluent businesspeople and exploitation of township residents.
According to Mawela, the film has been popular and has been successfully adapted to other countries such as Kenya and Ethiopia.
He went on to say that in Angola and Mozambique, where the language is spoken, two Portuguese channels have been launched and have proven to be quite successful.
In a similar vein, Netflix Inc., which has been attempting to break into the African market, has invested in African-produced shows such as “Blood and Water.” By 2023, the American giant plans to invest 929 million rand ($59 million) in South Africa’s creative industries.
To reach a younger, less affluent audience, Multichoice is also offering lower mobile phone bundles and striking partnerships with other content providers such as Netflix and Amazon.com Inc. to come onto its decoders.
“People tend to go onto our decoder and use all the different platforms through us, the company recently started offering Disney Plus, adding a further revenue stream.”Calvo Mawela, CEO, Multichoice
The popular video entertainment company was one of the gainers during the pandemic in 2020. The company reported its expected profits to be between N160.47 billion and N165.41 billion in six months before the ending of 30 September 2020.
Also, last year, we reported that the DSTV parent company was ordered by the Tax Appeal Tribunal (TAT) sitting in Lagos to pay back 50% (N900bn) of the N1.8 trillion tax it allegedly owed with the Federal Inland Revenue Service (FIRS).
This came after the directive from the FIRS, directing commercial banks to freeze and recover over N1.8 trillion in taxes from MultiChoice Nigeria Limited (MCN) And MultiChoice Africa (MCA
In response, Multichoice said that the commission’s allegations were unfounded. It maintained that it was fully engaged in a transparent process with the FIRS.
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