Netflix Africa Report 2016-2022

Netflix’s Socioeconomic Impact in Africa 2016-2022: Kenya, Nigeria, South Africa

#Netflix released a 45-page report on its “Africa adventures” from 2016-2022. We went through it and shared highlights in a Twitter thread. This was the easiest and quickest method to summarize the report’s findings.

Intro statements from Shola Sanni Director of Public Policy, sub-Saharan Africa Netflix; and Dean Garfield VP, Public Policy. In a nutshell, Netflix is excited about the future of its presence in Africa and bringing Africa to the world.

$175 million invested over the six-year period; or just about $29 million a year towards both content and “creative ecosystems” in South Africa, Kenya, and Nigeria combined; or about $10 million annually to each country. Can’t wait to see numbers from Prime Video eventually.

FYI: SSA refers to Sub-Saharan Africa (or as I call it, “Black Africa”). Agreed with the proclamations on both screengrabs. The industries in Nigeria, South Africa, and Kenya have been a consistent source of economic and creative activity; talent is there but no funding.

10 pages in, lots of “We are invested in the long-term growth of the sector”-type statements. My interpretation: relax, we’re just getting started; we’ll be here for a while and are committed to supporting industry development, sustainability, and competitiveness globally.

I think that may also serve as notice to Prime Video, Disney+ (which is brand new to the continent), Showmax, and future competitors that Netflix will definitely compete, if not aim to be a leader in the region. But good to know they are invested in building from the ground up.

Their best-performing series/films over the six-year period. Looks like South Africa wins this one, dominating the list. What I look at is the Global Weekly/Top 10 column. If it checks in, it traveled. If it checks in more than once, it traveled well. #Aníkúlápó

How much Netflix is involved at each stage from idea to screen? Looks like they’re quite involved throughout, except during the production/filming stage when they back off.

Investment are divided into: short-term (support to contribute to the production of content); medium-term (partnerships to consistently deliver local content); long-term (developing entry-level talent to meet local demand and contribute towards socio-economic objectives).

Netflix boasts its impact in “leveling up the post-production industry in Africa.” Although they don’t provide the names of each company listed below… just “Vendor 1,” “2,” and “3”.

Language about being committed to working with local policymakers, regulators, legislators, and government agencies to ensure Netflix’s impact is net positive for the local economies. Hence, “please don’t worry; we’re not neo-colonialists.”

The gist: Netflix conducted a survey with cast and crew members of locally-produced shows in South Africa, Nigeria, and Kenya to understand the impact of Netflix’s approach, receiving 144 responses.

Results of the survey…

Results from the survey…

Snapshots of each country. First, South Africa; second, Nigeria; third, Kenya…

Clearly, the bulk of the $175 million went into South Africa, with $125 million! Makes sense. They launched with the glossy spy thriller #QUEEN SONO in 2020, which was Netflix’s first African original series. Still there if you haven’t seen it.

Conclusion in brief: Netflix’s investment in Sub-Sahara Africa (Nigeria, Kenya, South Africa) has had significant economic and social benefits, requiring supportive policies and stakeholder collaboration, to build talent and understanding, and sustain investment. Now you know.

Read the full report here.