Wed. Dec 11th, 2019

E-commerce & Entertainment Industry In Nigeria An Age Long Romance Of Profitability

Seunmanuel Faleye

To describe the growth that Entertainment and Media Industry in Nigeria have witnessed in the past 23 years as astronomic, would be ipso facto, since the country got her access to Internet exploration in 1996.

Even more prominent was the growth by the end of 2001, when the country had over 150 Internet Service Providers, ISPs that were licensed by the Nigerian Communications Commission, NCC.
Every strata of the human life have been influenced by technology, and the entertainment and media industry are no exception.

Thanks to technology, entertainment now transcends time and space. The more technology evolved, the more entertainment transformed to become more consumer friendly.

By its nature, entertainment are designed to hold the attention of an audience, and give them pleasure too. Over the century, we have witnessed entertainment evolve from real-time performances in front of a live audience or instant gratification as a means of communication to big analogue boxes of Television and Radio sets, then from personal computer sets to smart devices. The future now is Virtual Reality, VR.
While cable and dish continues to be popular, consumers are now preferring live streaming and subscription on YouTube, Pay-For-Services video providers such as Netflix, Iroko Tv, etc.

Internet A Blessing More Than It is a Curse
Sadly, today, around the world, Nigeria is being blacklisted and profiled as a country with high rate of cyber crime cases. Thanks to a huge crop of Nigerian youths who have re-sorted to seeking life on the fast lane by involving in different natures of internet related crimes.

Commenting on the exponential rate of cyber criminality in Nigeria, ICT expert, Bolaji Omodunbi highlighted to that; “In Nigeria to- day, several internet assisted crimes known as cybercrimes are committed daily in various forms such as fraudulent electronic mails, pornography, identity theft, hacking, cyber harassment, spamming, Automated Teller Machine spoofing, piracy and phishing.”

However, more than a curse, internet access in the country has been a humongous blessing. The number of online financial transactions has largely increased over the years. As at 2008, there was a 90% increase in the number of Nigerian internet users from the year 2001. Businesses in the country have taken their means of communicating and trading with their consumers to the online space.

In Nigeria, online business transactions is made possible by the fast growing youth population, expanding consumer power and increased smartphone penetration. According to a report by renowned management consulting firm, McKinsey, “The current e-commerce spending in Nigeria is estimated at $12 billion, and is projected to reach $75 billion in revenue per annum by 2025.”


E-commerce have had enormozzus impact on the entertainment industry in it’s entirety, finds out. Bamisope Oyeyimika an economist and certified data analyst with FINCOM Nigeria, explains to; “… The impact of E-commerce on the entertainment industry is enormous Nigeria for example, though classified as a developing country artistes, managers and producers are employing this device to increase their visibility as well as market their products.”

Corroborating Oyeyimika, Francesca Ojemili, an A&R professional with a Lagos based record label talking to enlightened that; “Music contents are now purchased digitally online as well as ordered in physical forms. Independent artistes are able to sell their music through sites like CDbaby, iTunes, sportily and other local online music distribution sites while you can also purchase tickets for concerts, comedy shows online.”
The movie industry in the country is also not lagging behind in this development in financial technology, learnt. Ayobami Odunlami a sale representative with a popular cinema distribution platform explained that; “As for our kind of business, we gauge feedbacks from customers through online platforms. We use internet to advertise new releases, we post trailers online. We even post film schedules online. Customers from the comfort of their homes can see movies showing and at what time.
Our payment systems are likewise automated and technology driven. You can either swipe your card to buy movie tickets or pay manually. All of these are e-transactions and e-commerce in the play” he enlightened.

Regarding online distribution of movie contents, Ugochi Akali an agent with a Pay-On-Demand platform based in Lagos explained that; “Nollywood is now largely distributed and marketed online. A major example is through YouTube channels and collaborations between film makers and these online channels like iROKO Tv, ibakatv. Aforevo and so on are being hosted on YouTube.” Speaking further, Akali emphasized the significance of these growth to the industry, she said; “This has practically changed the landscape of film marketing and distribution in Nigeria while global presence and visibility of Nollywood is increasing daily through this process.”

On how E-commerce helps with projection, and affecting informed decision making for growth, Olaide Olatemiju a data analyst, whose company, has consulted for some popular show promotion company’s in Nigeria explained to that“…E-commerce is a core for all industries, including the leisure industry or entertainment. This is largely so because the millennials are in the heart of this industry, and they are a tech-savvy generation.

Speaking further, Ola Ola elucidated that; “Access to the huge databases of buyers who bought tickets to theaters, shows, concerts, etc. or are users of movies streaming services will allow the data mining of consumers’ preferences profiles which in turn will result in targeting advertisement and e-mails one-to-one.”

Exponential Growth Predicted
From findings, there are predictions that Nigeria’s music and entertainment industry is expected to continue to lead the rest of Africa. This is according to PriceWaterCoopers (PWC).
The country’s entertainment industry is expected to lead at a projected rate of 21.5% Compound Annual Growth Rate (CAGR) between 2018 and 2022, with revenue expected to reach $9.9billion.
This was contained in a report titled, “Global Entertainment and Media outlook: 2018 – 2022 – Trending now: convergence, connections and trust,” released on Wednesday, September 19, 2018.

The Outlook is a comprehensive source of analyses and five-year forecasts of consumer and advertising spending across five countries which are South Africa, Nigeria, Kenya, Ghana and Tanzania.
It also analyzed 14 segments including internet, data consumption, television, cinema, video games, e-sports, virtual reality, newspaper publishing, magazine publishing, book publishing, business-to-business (b2b), music, out-of-home (OOH) and radio.

Ola Ola takes a similar stance with his prediction; he said “Over the next five years, digital, especially mobile revenue will continue to make up more and more of the industry’s income, boosted by big gains in Internet advertising and data consumption.”

Pioneering Online Distribution of Nigerian Movies Globally: The Iroko TV Story
While in London, Jason Njoku, co-founder of Iroko TV, had realized that Nigerian movies were popular and in high demand overseas. He also discovered back then that the only chain of distributing these movies then, were through transportation of CDs. He saw a deficit in the online terrain. The growing worldwide demand for these movies, notwithstanding, they were not available on the internet. This marked Njoku’s foray into what is today known regarded as the ‘Netflix of Africa’.

In 2011, he returned to Nigeria and co-founded Iroko TV; meeting with local movie producers, Njoku negotiated online distribution deals. That was how he stamped his foot in history as a pioneer of online distributor of Nigerian contents and by extension African contents worldwide.
As of today, Iroko TV platform boasts more than 5,000 movies online, and attracts more than 10million views monthly. So far, the platform boasts of an active subscriber base of over 500,000 people.

According to Smart Starter, a tech driven platform, Jason’s Iroko is valued at taking in over $350,000 monthly revenue.
In July 2019, Njoku announced that his ROK TV studio, which is a subsidiary of Iroko TV since 2013, has been sold to French Studio, Canal+ group in what has been described as the biggest media deal ever in the history of Africa.
Njoku after the sale, reveals his plan is to grow subscriber base to one million, and there after, list the platform on London Stock Exchange.

Highest Earning Celebrities on Social Media

In the internet age, numerous streams of income are opened to entertainers and brand influencers, has leant. Brand Endorsements, Album Sales, Acting fees and so on are more fundamental means of revenue generation for celebrities.
It might be interesting to find out that some celebrities earn money from publishing on a social media account like Instagram.

According to popular Instagram Marketing Solution tool Hopper HQ, in its 2019 report, David Adeleke popularly known as Davido who has the most followed Instagram account with over 12 million following, is the 38th highest earning personality on Instagram, earning about $74,000 which is approximately 26million naira for each sponsored post.
Other celebrities on the list were Funke Akindele with over nine million followers, she is 45th and she gets $50,500, which is over 19million naira.
Wizkid is the 46th with over Eight million followers gets $49,700 which is close to 18millon naira. On the 48th slot was Tiwa Savage, with over 7.5 million followers, she gets $47,200 which is 17million naira.

These indices are pre-cursory to the evident influence that the financial technology has had on the media industry, to drive home her point, Ojemili buttresses, “Make no mistake, Nigeria’s E-commerce market is growing. It is a demonstration of the fact that Nigeria is leading the pack I Africa and catching up with the global online train. May reasons account for this, chief of which is technology.”

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