Iroking’s channels receive millions of views and listens from music lovers, especially in West Africa. Currently, the app has over 100,000 registered users and over 40,000 tracks on its database. The phone app also banks on the proliferation of mobile phones in the continent.
During a presentation at the recently held Mobile Entertainment Africa conference, Michael Ugwu, CEO of Iroking, presented facts on the alternative of music distribution in Africa.
The company revealed that P-Square, a renowned music duo, received nearly 26 million views for their videos on their channel. They shared over 70 percent of the revenue they generated from the YouTube channel with the artists.
Music distribution services have been a flop in Africa, with most music listeners relying heavily on pirated work. This has seen most artists lose in record sales and opt to cash in on live performances.
Iroking has given artists opportunities to generate revenue and distribute their music to a much wider audience. On the YouTube channel, Iroking uses Google Ads to engender revenue for both the company and the artist.
Mobile money generation becomes quite tricky for Iroking. The company asserts that using premium SMS, credit and debit card charges or mobile money have their own challenges.
The telecom companies would take a big portion of the profit when using premium SMS to charge music sales. Secondly, most of the market in Africa is unbanked so they can’t rely on debit or credit cards and lastly, mobile money is still in its infancy in Africa.
International music apps like Spotify have significantly changed the distribution of music by using technology. Spotify, a German led startup, now has millions of users.
A new player in the music streaming service entered the market a few weeks ago. Simpfy, was launched in the South African market in August this year, giving more options for African artists.