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Kwesé meets iflix in VoD

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iflix, the world’s leading entertainment service for emerging markets, and Econet Media’s pan-African media company, Kwesé, have partnered to take on the Video-on-Demand market in sub-Saharan Africa. 

Kwesé has acquired a significant stake in iflix Africa, which will now form part of Kwesé’s diverse broadcast offering, as the core vehicle to deliver mobile experiences to millions of viewers in Africa. Having set up operations in Nigeria, Kenya, Ghana and South Africa, iflix offers users the region’s most extensive collection of local African and international series and movies, including first-to-market exclusive programming.

Both companies have committed extensive resources with local and international expertise in mobile entertainment to serve Africa’s diverse markets. Econet Group Founder and Executive Chairman, Strive Masiyiwa said: “We are thrilled to deepen our operating partnership with iflix to lead the transformation of media in Africa. Our companies share a mutual passion for innovation, along with a deep understanding of the culture and evolution of digital businesses. Mobility in content consumption has grown exponentially in Africa and by partnering with iflix Africa we are ensuring that we are not only taking part in the evolution, but are leading the movement.”

The partnership between iflix and Kwesé ensures the delivery of relevant and compelling content on the best possible platforms. iflix Group Co-founder and Chief Executive Officer, Mark Britt, said: “The strengthening of our relationship with Econet Group is a huge milestone for iflix. Following the initial phase of building our business in Africa, we have seen tremendous growth across our operating markets, far exceeding our expectations. Econet’s deep experience and success in media and telecoms, will be a huge advantage and enable us to continue to grow rapidly.”

The deal says Kwesé, cements its commitment to deliver premium content through unrivalled TV programming, leading sports, up-to-the-minute news and the latest in entertainment.

Kwesé is currently available in 13 countries with its ground-breaking pay-as-you-watch Pay-TV service, and has built the largest pan-African free-to-air broadcast network,  showcasing Kwesé Free Sport in over 25 countries. The operating partnership will see iflix drive Kwesé’s go-to-market mobile delivery in each of its territories.

Now available to over one billion consumers across 24 territories throughout Asia, the Middle East and Africa, iflix has established itself as a market leader in video streaming. It offers consumers a vast library of top Hollywood, Asian and Middle Eastern regional, and local TV shows and movies, including many first run exclusives and award-winning programs. Each subscription allows users to access the service on up to five devices, including phones, laptops, tablets, and television sets, for viewing wherever, whenever.

 

Arts and Entertainment

Deezer to host Hotstix’s Mandela tribute playlist

Deezer is celebrating Nelson Mandela on the centenary of his birthday by hosting a tribute playlist created by music legend Sipho “Hotstix” Mabuse.  

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Mabuse, a legendary figure in African music, first rose to prominence in the 1970s with his band Harari and later developed a name for himself as a solo artist. One of his best known songs was the global hit BurnOut in the 1980s.

The playlist takes the listener on a captivating musical journey through the life of Nelson Mandela.  It was compiled by Mabuse, who consulted with Mandela’s family and friends to ensure that the music would be relevant and accurate. The playlist also features commentary by Mabuse, which was recorded in his Soweto home.  

“I have tried to tell the story of the music that Madiba loved,” says Mabuse. “The Playlist excludes the time in prison obviously, as Madiba would not have had exposure to music in that time.  We have focused on the music we know he loved before and after that period. This recording was really an emotional journey for me, but an incredible opportunity to document these memories.”

The playlist features the music the young Mandela loved, such as The Manhattan Brothers, Solomon Linda, Brenda Fassie and Miriam Makeba.  It includes struggle songs from Chicco, Johnny Clegg, Hugh Masekela and Yvonne Chaka Chaka.  The playlist also includes Mandela by Zahara, one of the younger artists who caught Madiba’s ear.

Mabuse also offers stories of his own songs, such as Shikisha, a song greatly beloved by the former President.

“I was delighted to share my thoughts and hope the listeners enjoyed the musical journey,” says Mabuse. “Madiba did enjoy music immensely and we all have a purpose wherever we are in the world to celebrate culture and to learn from different cultures and music forms and styles.”

This playlist was inspired by the Nelson Mandela 100 campaign, calling on corporates and individuals to act as sources of inspiration and engage in conversation and action.

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Avengers’ all-time accolade

This past weekend Marvel Studios’ Avengers: Infinity War became the second highest grossing film of all time at the South African Box Office.

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This means that Marvel Studios now holds the number 2 and number 1 film of all time positions at the local Box Office, following Black Panther’s unprecedented record-shattering run since it’s 16 February 2018 release.

In South Africa, audiences continued to assemble in cinemas to witness the cinematic journey ten years in the making, earning Avengers: Infinity War a current total box office tally of just under R73 million with over 874 000 attendances.

Black Panther’s historic box office journey ended in June and now boasts a final box office total just shy of R107.5 million and over 1.43 million attendances, making it the biggest film of all time at the South African box office and the first to cross the R100m mark. This record builds on Black Panther’s list of achievements on the African continent and is the biggest grossing film of all time not only in South Africa, but also East and West Africa. Black Panther is now available to enjoy on DVD and Blu-ray, as well as to digitally rent or buy from retailers and providers across the continent.

Elsewhere in Africa, Avengers: Infinity War has also raked in a total of Kes 66.9m in East Africa, making it the 2nd highest grossing film of all time behind Black Panther. Similarly, in West Africa, the film hit N450m at the box office, making it the 2nd highest grossing international film of all time, also behind Black Panther.

For Marvel Studios fans, the action and adventure continues as the 20th film in the Marvel Cinematic Universe, Ant-Man and The Wasp, hit cinemas this past weekend and created enough buzz to fly into the number one position at the South African Box Office.

“We are thrilled at the response that Marvel Studios’ titles have continued to receive from cinema-goers across the continent,” says Christine Service, Senior Vice President of The Walt Disney Company Africa. “With Ant-Man and The Wasp in cinemas, and both Captain Marvel and the next Avengers film in 2019, we are eagerly anticipating the continuing expansion of the Marvel Cinematic Universe and look forward to celebrating with fans.”

On the animated front and with its own super hero theme, Disney•Pixar’s Incredibles 2, continues to entertain families across the country and is already Disney’s second-highest grossing animated film of all time behind Finding Dory, after only 3 weeks in release.

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