Monday 11 March 2013


Are you in London on 10th April? Africa Creative Industries Investment Summit (ACIIS)

Type 'fastest growing economies' in any search engine and you will find a list which includes, at least, two African countries. Aside from this growth trend, many are now becoming aware of the creative sectors across Africa as its economies seek to diversify. Thanks to digital technology and new business models, the evolution is rapid.

It is a momentous task to squeeze these sectors, in various parts of Africa, into a blog post but this Leo would attempt to paint a picture - one which many would see as focused on a few countries (so it seems, says Afro Leo). 

Internationally, there is now a recognition of the potentials within the creative sectors of certain African countries: Nigeria and its entertainment sector arguably stands out. But generally speaking across Africa, these sectors are growing: advertising (also see here); contemporary artsfashion (also see here and here); digital technology (also see here, here here); publishing (lifestyle publishing has grown tremendously across Africa; just search online for 'lifestyle magazines in Africa' and see the results); media and entertainment (film also see various African film festivals, gaming,  animation, and music). 

Some of these sectors support each other; for example, the entertainment sector sustains other sub-sectors such as lifestyle publishing and global brands are pouncing on celebrity branding opportunities across Africa. Also, with digital technology to hand, we have seen the rise of e-publishing across Africa with blogs such as Linka IkejiBella Naija, and Ameyaw Debrah.(Afro Leo can see that these blogs all have enviable readership and advertising prowess and amazed to see more bloggers advertised here - just in one country). The legal services sector is also a winner too: the players within these sectors (e.g. entertainment) will require their creativity, reputation and hard work to be protected and commercialised. 

This Leo's faint knowledge of recent export of African creativity, at least to the UK, include: (a) this lovely Kellogg's TV advert, created by the London ad agency, Leo Burnett, which synchronised "Rain Rain Beautiful Rain" by South African group Ladysmith Black Mambazo; (b)  D'banj's Oliver Twist song making its way into the British television soap opera, EastEnders; (c) Africa Express (and here); and (d) 'Tango with Me', a Nollywood movie screened at the Odeon cinema. Further, the stage musical, Fela!, based on the legendary African artist in the United States of America and the UK and the rise of TV format programming across the African continent are also encouraging signs of commercialisation going both ways. 

Nonetheless, there is still some way to go for these sectors to realise their full potential and contribute more to the growth figures in their respective economies. Sound distribution infrastructure, more private and public investment, conducive legal and regulatory framework such as an efficient ntellectual property rights regime (including an effective collecting society), and wider research into some of these sectors appear imperative.

The high growth creative sectors will continue to help rebrand the continent's image globally, diversify economies and create much-needed employment. This was the inspiration for the upcoming event staged by Amoo Venture Capital Advisory  (Amoo) in London on 10th of April 2013 which is titled, ' Business models and investment in Africa's creative industries'. 

So, why this post and why bother you with this event? Well, the event is this Leo's brainchild during his stint at Amoo (where he learned a thing or two about the world of venture capital and technology start-ups). As a result, Afro-IP is delighted to have secured the discount code, AFROIPACIIS, for readers who might be interested and available to attend. To purchase a ticket with the code, please visit

For further information including on speaking opportunities, partnership and/or sponsorship, please send an email to Sandy Sah or Nzube Ufodike or call +44 (0) 78 3014 3489.

Click here for the press release for ACIIS.
South African government's creative industries development framework, see here
Ghana to build a massive IT hub, see here Nigerian government to invest in Nollywood, see here, here, here and here
The growth of the Nigerian entertainment industry and piracy, see here
Firms invest N500m each year on Nigerian celebrity brands, see here 
Ghana to boost creative arts sector with the launch of music week festival, see here
Algerian film hits top spot at Pan-Africa film festival, see here
Various Pan-African film festivals see here, here , here and here 
IBM's plan for Kenya's creative industries, see here
South Africa's answer to Disney, see here, here and for funding animation in South Africa, see here
See global brands landing in Nigeria here



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