StarNews Mobile, an Ivory Coast based Media Startup has raised funding from Investors & Partners (I&P), a pioneering impact investing group dedicated to small and medium-sized enterprises in Sub-Saharan Africa.
The startup raised a pre-Series A funding of $1.8 million round to help boost its growth across Africa.
StarNews started its activities in 2017 in Ivory Coast and runs a mobile is a video content distribution platform. The company says it is positioning itself in a unique market, specifically adapted to the African context to unlock the potential of the creation of mobile video content on the continent. StarNews was designed as a digital platform for creating, producing and distributing video content to mobile subscribers on various themes (celebrities, culture, cuisine, sport, humor, religion, beauty, events, etc.).
Guy Kamgaing, founder and director of the company, came to this conclusion: while the African mobile market is currently experiencing the fastest growth in the world, a large majority of African consumers unfortunately do not have access to relevant video content, due to a lack of offers adapted to the realities of the local market. A market that Guy Kamgaing knows well: this Cameroonian entrepreneur has over 20 years of experience in the mobile phone industry.
“Despite the widespread use of smartphones and ever-wider access to mobile Internet, value-added service offers are not very Africanized and even when they are, the content comes only from international players. It was necessary to highlight this rich and original local content and allow its players to monetize it appropriately. Hence the idea of a distribution platform deployed in partnership with mobile operators.” he said.
Now launched in Ivory Coast, Cameroon, the Democratic Republic of the Congo and South Africa, StarNews has established partnerships with large pan-African mobile operators such as MTN and Orange in order to distribute exclusive and quality video content directly to users. The users can subscribe through their mobile to the various channels offered for as little as $0.10. The startup then shares the generated income with content creators. StarNews started out collaborating with local and international African celebrities such as Fally Ipupa, Serge Beynaud, Lady Ponce or Davido and has been focusing since 2019 on the development of new themes.
“We are proud to support a talented and experienced African entrepreneur who demonstrates a real commitment to deploy a pan-African and innovative solution.” Nouss Bih, Investment Manager at I&P, based in Abidjan, Ivory Coast said.
”We share StarNews’ ambition to showcase African artists and to produce a greater diversity of quality local content with high added value for end users” he adds.