iROKOtv, Africa’s biggest online platform for streaming movies, celebrated its first birthday on Saturday, and HumanIPO can reveal a South African office is in the pipeline.
The company has invested in building the world’s largest library of Nollywood movies over the past year, owning more than 5,000 title licences.
As a testament to their growth, iROKOtv’s Jessica Hope told HumanIPO a “South African office is in the pipeline” and that they are “planning an announcement very early next year”.
Launched on World Aids Day in 2011 by Jason Njoku, who is the Founder and Chief Executive of iROKO Partners, iROKOtv has grown to register more than 800,000 users in just eight months. These users come from more than 178 countries across the world.
Since launch, iROKOtv has recorded almost 50 million plays.
Commenting recently on Nigeria’s Nollywood industry, President Goodluck Jonathan said: “These are the people who market this country positively in African countries and even outside Africa and even in the Caribbean, where they appreciate Nigeria because of Nollywood.”
Prior to iROKOtv, producers of Nollywood movies would find their movies online but receive no payment and lost out on thousands of dollars.
As such, since its launch iROKOtv has changed the Nollywood industry for its producers by opening up a new revenue stream. Now, they work with iROKOtv to licence their movies and stream their content online legally.
Njoku added: “We’ve had an awesome first year at iROKOtv and we’ve got great plans in the pipeline for 2013, including adding more films to our library and growing our global audience. Our first year has seen us bring Nollywood to the Diaspora, whose thirst for movies seems unquenchable.
“Our biggest markets are in the West, dominated by the US and UK. However, in 2013, we will be focussing our attention back on Africa and figuring out ways we can bring this awesome content to new audiences.
“Our business is incredibly simple; African stories, by Africans, for Africans and we hope to continue this mantra for many more birthdays.”