South African company, Multichoice Group has announced its plan to significantly increase its investment in Ethiopia.
The East African country is recognised as having huge growth potential with its large population (second only to Nigeria), impressive GDP growth and its largely untapped potential within the ICT sector.
Having operated in the country since 1992, the company that owns satellite TV Dstv, is looking to significantly expand its reach, investment in people and infrastructure, and its support of Ethiopian content and content creators. This includes investing heavily in local content as part of the Group’s hyper local content strategy.
“Ethiopia is open for business and has demonstrated its commitment to supporting businesses from around the world. We will continue to demonstrate our commitment to Ethiopia through the development of local skills and industries, and through exciting plans for content that speaks to Ethiopians in their own voice,” said Calvo Mawela, CEO MultiChoice Group.
The MultiChoice Ethiopia operation, ably helmed by General Manager Gelila G. Michael, employs nearly 100 Ethiopians directly, and through its supply chain and network of technicians and installers supports hundreds more.
Africa has also shown that it has a massive appetite for African stories, produced in Africa. Based on this, the MultiChoice Group’s strategy of creating hyperlocal content, made locally, has already borne fruit, and has allowed the company to commit to continue its investment in local content production and aggregation.
This is evident in the popularity of the recently launched Ethiopian channel Zee Alem, on the Group’s DStv platform as well as the investment in dubbing international content in Amharic.
Multichoice has also conducted training for SuperSport commentators in vernacular for local sports broadcasts.
MultiChoice Ethiopia has also brought on board almost all free-to-air local channels and radio stations on the DStv platform to show its commitment to the Ethiopian market and to better serve its customers with local news, entertainment and music offerings.
The MultiChoice Group is by now established as the leading provider of video entertainment in Africa, with access to 19.5m households across the continent.
MultiChoice has become the largest local content creator on the continent with a library of more than 56 000 hours of local content and has produced content in 17 languages for distribution via 33 proprietary general entertainment channels in 50 countries.
In 2013, local content spend as a percentage of total general entertainment content spend was 30%. In 2020 it was 40% and is targeted to reach 45% by 2022.
“In the aftermath of COVID-19 our commitment to the long term, and to creating local value chains and local content, is more important than ever. Multichoice is a business born and bred in Africa, and we are proud to reinvest in the continent for lasting socio-economic impact,” added Mawela.