According to industry reports, Netflix’s top executive team in Africa plans to continue spending on scripted and unscripted content across genres.
This was revealed during Tuesday’s “See What’s Next Africa” showcase in Johannesburg, South Africa, where the streamer announced several African original renewals, including co-production developments, details around existing projects, and another multi-project output deal with South Africa filmmaker Mandlakayise Walter Dube for films and series.
Under the partnership, Dube — who directed Netflix’s first commissioned African film “Silverton Siege,” will also direct various Netflix-owned projects.
Dube joins Nigeria’s Junle Afolayan of Kunle Afolayan Productions and Mo Abudu of EbonyLife Studios, who already have similar output deals with the streamer.
The streamer said it plans to line up other output deals with more African filmmakers.
Netflix’s director of local language series for Africa, Dorothy Ghettuba, said, “Our investment in Africa continues to grow, and we just continue to do more. We believe Africa is one of the major creative centres for great storytelling that resonates worldwide, so it only makes sense to increase our investment with our slates.”
Netflix’s director of licensing and co-production for Africa, Nkateko Mabaso, who recently joined from pay-TV operator MultiChoice, said the streamer is constantly expanding the partners it’s working with across the continent and looking to elevate the creative product.
“We can only go forward and spend more, and that’s exciting,” said Mabaso.
He further highlighted that funding remains the most significant challenge for co-productions across Africa.
“There’s a lot more support in the South African market, but if you look at other markets, which are key for us, like Kenya and Nigeria, there are still opportunities for other funders to come in and play a part in the co-production space,” Mabaso said.
While Nigeria, Kenya and South Africa remain the three critical African content territories for Netflix originals, Ghettuba said the streamer is buying shows from various other countries, including Ghana, Zimbabwe and Uganda, and will be expanding its original content umbrella.