Business Insight

Is Africa’s Internet Market Backed By Real Purchasing Power? (An Irokotv case study)

Economies around the world have experienced a squeeze with the global economy on lockdown.
 
This crisis has not only affected businesses, people have lost their jobs which has inadvertently affected spending patterns.
 
Irokotv, a video-on-demand streaming platform has had its fair share of the squeeze.
 
While global streaming media is experiencing a boom around the world, same cannot be said about Africa as its numbers has been regressing.

Businesses are a small part of the economy and they react to changes in the economy.
 
Unemployment, Currency devaluation, hostile government regulations were issues faced by the company which had negative impacts in its Nigerian market, leading it to down-sizing workforce.

The internet, in recent times, has been seen to enable economic growth and opportunity.
 
Globally, in both developed and developing countries, applications and services powered by the internet have seemed to accelerate economic growth and created jobs.

As of December 2019, Nigeria had more than 126million internet users, second ranked is Egypt with 49million users in Africa.
 
These figures does not translate to money spent by the users.

The growth of internet users is yet to fully reflect in the revenue generated by internet businesses. These can be attributed to currency devaluations and a sharp downturn in oil-exporting economies like Nigeria.
 
With net losses of US$30 million+ in its 9year existence, Irokotv has pushed hard in a bid to expand its market in Africa to no avail
 
It had identified that 80% of its revenue was from its international markets in North America and Western Europe.
 
Africa has a huge, growing and untapped internet community, harsh economic realities which ultimately affects consumer spending patterns affects business sustainability.

The internet will not magically generate revenues essential for businesses!

The question might be – How can business innovators in the internet industry convert better sales from the African market where most of these services are seen as discretionary spending?

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