FESPACO: AfricaFilms.tv signs 12 contracts and announces YouTube partnership

Top Story

While the Panafrican Film and TV Festival of Ouagadougou was a triumph for Senegalese filmmakers - they got both Gold, Bronze and Best actor's awards -  Dakar and Paris-based VOD portal AfricaFilms.tv announced some significant deals from the event. Sylvain Beletre talked to Enrico Chiesa, CEO, AfricaFilms.tv.

Chiesa of AfricaFilms.tv confirmed to Balancing Act that twelve contracts were signed with African producers, amounting to a total of 150 hours of programming, mostly Burkinabe and Ivorian TV series, but also fiction series from DRC, Morocco and Zimbabwe, and documentaries from South Africa.

"Burkina and Ivory Coast sitcoms and soapies are key to build leadership amongst French speaking Africans here and abroad, and Southern African productions are essential to raise the level up and appeal to non-African audiences too”.

“This Fespaco was a brilliant one for us thanks to doubling our acquisition power, now that Mohamed Diakite's Africa Productions have come on board as he can leverage on reputation alone the most successful TV hits from the region." said Enrico Chiesa, CEO, adding that "As for me, my clear priority remains Southern Africa, where we developed a trustful relation with indie producers over the last 3 years."

See also how AfricaFilms.tv’s partnership with Nairobi-based BuniTV will help AfricaFilms.tv strengthen its Eastern African offer.

At Fespaco on February 28th. 2013, AfricaFilms.tv was a guest at the first-ever YouTube workshop in an African Film Festival, hosting some 80 film producers. Google's Dakar office - responsible for 15 French speaking African countries - presented the new features of the leading video-platform and introduced to the audience AfricaFilms.tv as a trusted YouTube channel publisher to market and protect their titles online.

Chiesa declared: "VOD needs to be 360°. Pay-per-title and subscription bring higher margins, but the mass-volume will stay at YouTube's and is very adequate to popular product and prolific soapies. The YouTube Premium Partnership we and a handful of other African players signed also allows to propose our rights owners a sophisticated protection against piracy, enabling to also monetize unauthorized views. This ‘pirates-becoming-profitable-fans approach’ is a real breakthrough for producers".


Video briefings on topics you need to know about:

Using satellite to reach Africa:
Akin Salami, OHTV on its increased satellite coverage over Africa and its new IPTV box

Why Filipino telenovelas do well in Africa:
Evelyn Raymundo, CBS-ABN on why Filipino telenovelas are so popular globally

The availability of VoD platforms:

African audiovisual market: trends in 2012 and strategy in 2013 - by Enrico Chiesa - Africafilms.dv

Creating new programmes and selling them internationally:

Kenyan chef Kiran Jethwa talks about his new TV programme Tales from the Bush Larder

Chike Maduegbuna on Afrinolly, a new film and music mobile platform

An interesting documentary for TV channels:

Documentary maker Victor Buhler on The Beautiful Game, about football in Africa