Published on October 30, 2023, 8:12 pm
Image source: Fox News
African mobile video network StarNews Mobile has successfully raised $3 million in pre-Series A funding. The platform offers African content creators an opportunity to monetize their work through a subscription model. Currently available in six African countries, including Cameroon (its country of origin), Nigeria, Ghana, Congo, Benin, and Ivory Coast, StarNews aims to connect creators with mobile users who lack access to relevant content due to expensive data plans and a shortage of services tailored to local markets.
Founder and CEO Guy Kamgaing launched StarNews in 2017, drawing from his extensive experience in content monetization within the Value-Added Services (VAS) business. Kamgaing noticed that many African creators struggled to generate revenue on traditional platforms like YouTube and saw an opportunity to leverage his relationships with telecommunications operators.
StarNews partners with major telecom companies such as MTN and Orange to offer monetization avenues for content creators. These partnerships are crucial in Africa’s media industry as telecom operators play a pivotal role in content distribution across the continent. By collaborating closely with these operators, StarNews has attracted over 4 million active subscribers.
The platform operates through dedicated channels for each creator, providing financial support and assistance in content production. It also guides creators throughout their digital journey by offering support in digital acquisition. User acquisition is predominantly driven by telecom operators sending messages encouraging customers to sign up for StarNews to watch social media personalities, music artists, comedians, influencers, and genre-specific shows such as the African Cup of Nations.
In addition to supporting content creators, StarNews features deeply hyperlocal content that encompasses topics specific to each market it operates in. This approach has led to significant partnerships with entities like Sony and Universal. The platform’s expansion plans include strengthening its presence in Francophone Africa while expanding into strategic markets like Nigeria and Ghana.
The funding secured through the pre-Series A round will enable StarNews to better support its creators and enhance payouts. Janngo, an Africa-focused venture capital firm, led the funding round, with participation from prominent investors such as soccer players Aurelien Tchouameni, Jules Kounde, and Mike Maignan. The investment highlights these players’ shared African heritage and their genuine interest in engaging with the African audience and supporting startups across the continent.
StarNews is well-positioned to capitalize on Africa’s creative industry’s growth potential. The creative industry is expected to expand fourfold by 2050 and has the potential to generate up to $20 billion in GDP. With its unique positioning, strategic partnerships, technology, and content, StarNews aims to be at the forefront of telling the real African story while bridging connections with the African diaspora.
Original article posted by Fox News