iROKO Partners, Africa’s largest source of Nigerian entertainment with its platforms iROKOtv and iROKING, announces a major strategic development via its entry into the South African DVD market and the launch of 10,000 new Nigerian movie DVDs.
Nigeria’s movie industry, colloquially known as ‘Nollywood’ is the second largest film industry in the world, producing around 2,000 movies a year.
The launch announced today represents the first foray for iROKOtv, ’Africa’s Netflix’, into the sizeable South African DVD market and is responding to demand for even more Nollywood content in South Africa. It is also a brand new distribution channel for iROKOtv as historically the company’s content has only been available online.
To launch, ten of iROKOtv’s most popular Nollywood films are now available on top quality DVDs, beautifully packaged and at a cost of R30. They are currently selling in Johannesburg’s local shops and markets including Soweto, Kempton Park, Rosettenville and Randburg.
“iROKOtv revolutionised the video-on-demand (VOD) industry for African entertainment when we launched, bringing thousands of movies online to Nollywood lovers around the world. In a short space of time, we were able to connect with the online African community but, in reality, the majority of Nollywood fans are offline and watch Nollywood on DVDs,” said Jason Njoku, founder and CEO.
“Access is the immediate challenge for VOD companies here. Until Africa comes online, DVDs will continue to be the primary platform to consume content, which is why iROKOtv has now entered the DVD market.”
Almost 50% of iROKOtv’s traffic comes from the UK and US, as Diasporan communities have access to cheap and reliable broadband; something that cannot be said for the vast majority of Africans on the continent. Nollywood is increasingly popular in South Africa but audiences struggle to access high quality, low-cost, legal content online, which makes the shift to DVD sales both exciting for iROKO as a new distribution channel and perfect for South African consumers.
Genevieve Dumourne, Head of iROKO South Africa concluded: “The South African market entry is evidence of iROKO diversifying its offering and broadening its reach across the continent. When we launched www.iROKOtv.com 18 months ago, we gave Nollywood a home online, providing the content loved by so many with a well-deserved beautiful platform. With the launch of the DVD business, we have taken exactly the same approach, producing top quality discs in beautifully designed boxes that really stand out from anything else on the market. It’s an extremely exciting market and we have high expectations for growing this part of the business”.