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African OTT revenue to top $2bn by 2027, Digital TV Research forecasts

OTT revenues in sub-Saharan Africa are expected to reach US$2bn by 2027, a threefold increase from US$623m in 2021, according to new data from Digital TV Research.

South Africa and Nigeria will together account for 56% of total revenues by 2027, leaving US$896m divided between the other countries in sub-Saharan Africa. SVoD revenues will reach US$1.66bn by 2027, up from US$476m in 2021, said the UK-based research firm.

The company also forecasts 13.72 million SVoD subscriptions in sub-Saharan Africa by 2027, up from 4.89 million at the end of 2021. It said Netflix will account for 47% of the region’s SVoD subscriptions by 2027 with a total of 6.41 million subscribers.

However, with no Amazon Prime countries in sub-Saharan Africa, Prime Video is forecast to grow more modestly from 599,000 paying subscribers in the region for 2021 to 2.18 million by 2027. MultiChoice-owned Showmax, meanwhile, will jump from 804,000 for 2021 to 2.15 million by 2027, Digital TV Research said.

Breaking down the subscription figures further, the data forecasts that Disney+ will have smaller growth due to its late entry into the sub-Saharan Africa OTT market, ending 2022 with 92,000 paying subscribers and rising to 1.34 million by 2027. Apple TV+ will be even more modest, ending last year with 32,000 subs and reaching just 177,000 by 2027.

Simon Murray, principal analyst at Digital TV Research, said: “Disney+ will only have a limited roll-out: South Africa (2022) and Nigeria (2023). We do not think that Paramount+, HBO Max or Peacock will start as standalone platforms in Africa. HBO will continue its distribution deal with Showmax.”

Regarding the French-speaking markets in Africa, Murray added: “Francophone MyCanal started as a free add-on for Canal+ pay TV subscribers in 2021. In our last forecasts, we expected MyCanal to be a standalone platform. We now do not believe this will happen. This will stifle SVoD growth in the Francophone countries.”

This story first appeared on C21’s sister site Content Nigeria.

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