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Streaming Wars: Netflix Officially Launches In Nigeria To Take On Local Services Like Iroko


Netflix finally has a Nigeria account on Twitter. It’s been a long time coming for the streaming giant which made headlines back in 2018 when it acquired Genevieve Nnaji’s Lion Heart movie for an unconfirmed $3m.

Since then there has been a flurry of Nigerian movies and shows finding their way to the site. From partnering with top producers like Kemi Adetiba and Kunle Afolayan, old and new movies from them are not on the site. That’s said, we can see the likes of RMD, Adesua Etomi-Wellington and Kate Henshaw in the Netflix announcement but this could be the start of original programming. Besides Lion Heart which is a Netflix original, majority of the content from Nigeria have not been Netflix originals. This changes it all though as it looks like original contents from the Nigerian scene are about to start hitting Netflix.

Netflix has been bringing the competition to other streaming services like iRoko and DTSV Now which is now being said to be developed by the South African Multichoice into a standalone service just like Netflix. Thanks to cheaper internet data plans and wider 4G coverages, Nigerians are now streaming than ever before. If you follow most of the telecom giants online or pay attention to their numerous daily text messages, then you would have seen some really mouth watering offers.

According to research site Statista, In the final quarter of 2019, Netflix had over 167 million paying streaming subscribers worldwide as well as over 4.6 million free trial customers. Of these subscribers, 61.04 million were from the United States. It is difficult to say how many of those subscribers are Nigerian users’ resident in Nigeria but some say that number has been growing steadily from 50,000 paying customers back in early to about 100,000 with the launch of more Nigerian content. Using social media statistics for example, the number of Nigerian users on Facebook is projected to hit 30.4 million by 2023 and going by this, it’s safe to say Netflix will also see a dramatic jump (as long as the content keeps coming) in Nigerian user numbers should the trend hold still.

While Netflix main rival Disney Plus is expected to hit 100 million subscribers by 2025, Netflix is likely to be in the lead with 235.6 million subscribers, Amazon Prime Video is expected to come in second with a projected 135.9 million subscribers. Not too surprising though is the new Disney Plus coming third place with an estimated 101.2 million subscribers by 2025. HBO Max and Apple TV+ comes in at 30.1 million and 27.1 million respectively.

Here is what Nigerians are saying about Netflix’s latest announcement;




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