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Netflix’s African Original Spy Series To Unlock Continent Growth

Netflix has revealed that it sees the opening of its new crime-drama series Queen Sono as the first of many African original TV series that will grow the US giant in a market that is still dominated by satellite TV.

The story of a South African secret agent on a mission to uncover the truth behind the death of her mother will be followed by a Zambian animation, a Cape Town-set thriller and a new Nigerian production. They’ve all been commissioned by Kenyan producer Dorothy Ghettuba.

She was hired by Netflix last year to source content from the African continent of more than one billion people.

Ghettuba said that Netflix is diving all in when it comes to Africa. She added that Africans like to see themselves on the screen and that Africa has a large population that wants their stories to be told.

While Netflix already offers financing for locally produced content in other regions of the world, it has been slower to target Africa. The continent is only recently started receiving the internet speeds and affordable data prices that are needed to convince viewers to switch from traditional TV at a rate that makes the investment viable. 

Netflix’s current chief rival is Showmax, owned by South Africa’s pay-TV giant MultiChoice Group, while Amazon.com also has a small presence in the region. Disney+ is expected to roll out in Africa in 2022.

Showmax already produces close to 5 000 hours of local African content every year, which it uses to attract subscribers.

The CEO of MultiChoice’s Connected Video division, Niclas Ekdahl, said that the volume of local content watched on Showmax over the last eight months is up by 40%, so the VOD service has seen a real impact.

Ghettuba said that Netflix does not have a specific budget for the continent. The streaming service looks at stories and provides the financing that a particular production needs to ensure that the story is told in the best way.

 

Credit: This article originated from www.fin24.com





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