Nollywood is on a path to globalization, and the deep pockets of tech operators will help achieve global success.
A Nollywood director, Editi Effiòng, shared a list of executive producers for his film, The Black Book, on August 25. It featured African startup founders and investors like Nadayer Enegesi (Eden Life), Olumide Soyombo (Voltron Capital), and Ezra Olubi (Paystack). While this is not the first time African tech players have invested in film projects, the long list of executive producers for The Black Book has shown that tech operators are increasingly funding film projects.
It was gathered that for decades, inadequate funding has slowed Nollywood’s growth, affecting film quality and limiting profitability.
However, Niyi Akinmolayan, a filmmaker, shared on X that because of these issues, many Nigerian films submitted to streaming platforms are underpriced compared to those from other industries or rejected.
A journalist and film writer, Anita Eboigbe, informed newsmen that more money in the film industry could help solve some of these problems. “Right now, there are monopolies everywhere that can only be disrupted by more money. When it comes to streaming platforms, there are still a lot of negotiation problems that haven’t been solved. These all boil down to how we handle the process, and to fix this, we need money,” she said.
Investments from streaming platforms like Netflix and Amazon Prime and partnerships with local studios like Inkblot and EbonyLife are improving film quality. It is translating to better commercial performance at the cinemas. The highest-grossing films in Nigerian box-office history as of 2022 have been local productions: The Wedding Party ($1.5 million) and Omo Ghetto: The Saga ($1.5 million); and Nollywood now accounts for 55% of ticket sales in Nigeria.
Meanwhile, in the first quarter of 2023, Nollywood accounted for 42% of box office revenue.