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Tiger Global, Rise Capital tap into Nigeria’s ‘Nollywood’ with $8m iROKOtv backing

18 Dec 2013

cinema 12_sqGrowth investor Tiger Global has led an $8m financing round for Nigerian movie platform iROKOtv as it looks to tap into the rising popularity of the ‘Nollywood’ film scene.

US-based Rise Capital and Sweden’s Kinnevik also took part in the financing, bringing iROKOtv’s total capital raised to $21m and cementing it as one of the best-funded internet businesses in sub-Saharan Africa.

That capital has been used to acquire content, expand the London-based tech team, develop mobile websites and applications and open offices in London, New York and Johannesburg, alongside the company’s Lagos headquarters.

iROKOtv now holds the world’s largest online catalogue of African content, with more than 5,000 movies.

Currently 50 per cent of iROKOtv’s audience is located in the UK and US, but demand for homegrown multi-platform video content is rising fast according to the company.

Rise Capital managing partner Nazar Yasin said, “We are very pleased to participate in this round of financing alongside Kinnevik and my former colleagues at Tiger Global.

“Having worked with Jason, Bastian and the team since their early days, we at Rise Capital look forward to continuing to help them scale their content acquisition and distribution channels and secure their positioning as sub-Saharan Africa’s largest and most impactful media company.”

The Nigerian government is currently taking steps to stimulate the development of the venture capital and private equity industry to fund micro, small and medium businesses in the country.

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