African startup StarNews Mobile secures first funding from Investisseurs & Partenaires
African startup StarNews Mobile, specialized in the field of mobile video, achieved its first fundraising with Investisseurs & Partenaires, a pioneering impact investing group dedicated to small and medium-sized enterprises in Sub-Saharan Africa, through its fund I&P Afrique Entrepreneurs 2.
StarNews started its activities in 2017 in Ivory Coast. The company is positioning itself in a unique market, specifically adapted to the African context to unlock the potential of the creation of mobile video content on the continent. StarNews was designed as a digital platform for creating, producing and distributing video content to mobile subscribers on various themes (celebrities, culture, cuisine, sport, humor, religion, beauty, events, etc.).
Guy Kamgaing, Founder and Director, StarNews Mobile: "Despite the widespread use of smartphones and ever-wider access to mobile Internet, value-added service offers are not very Africanized and even when they are, the content comes only from international players. It was necessary to highlight this rich and original local content and allow its players to monetize it appropriately. Hence the idea of a distribution platform deployed in partnership with mobile operators."
Now launched in Ivory Coast, Cameroon, the Democratic Republic of the Congo and South Africa, StarNews has established partnerships with large pan-African mobile operators such as MTN and Orange in order to distribute exclusive and quality video content directly to users who can subscribe through their mobile to the various channels offered. Monetization is one of the key issues of the model: the startup offers content creators a stable source of income by sharing the generated income. StarNews started out collaborating with local and international African celebrities such as Fally Ipupa, Serge Beynaud, Lady Ponce or Davido and has been focusing since 2019 on the development of new themes.
StarNews carries out a first fundraising campaign with Investisseurs & Partenaires through its I&P Afrique Entrepreneurs 2 fund, launched late 2017 to support the emergence of a new generation of responsible African businesses. The company is fully in line with the investment mandate of the fund, due to its unique and relevant positioning in a booming market and its strong impact on the promotion of African talents.
Nouss Bih, Investment Manager, I&P, Abidjan, Ivory Coast: “We are proud to support a talented and experienced African entrepreneur who demonstrates a real commitment to deploy a pan-African and innovative solution. We share StarNews’ ambition to showcase African artists and to produce a greater diversity of quality local content with high added value for end users.”
I&P Afrique Entrepreneurs 2 continues to invest actively in Sub-Saharan Africa, particularly in Madagascar, West Africa and East Africa. StarNews is the 9th investment of the fund. By 2022, IPAE 2 aims to finance some twenty additional African SMEs, with an investment ticket ranging from €300,000 to €3 million euros (2 billion FCFA).