Jason Njoku and SPARK launch Foto.com.ng, a Stock Image startup

If you’re a blogger, web developer, media person or anyone in Africa who has to work with images, especially online, you’d know how hard it is to come by culturally and ethnically relevant stock images. While popular Stock Image platforms like Shuttershock are undoubtedly awesome, they leave a lot to be desired. And sometimes, simple Google image searches just don’t cut it as you may never find exactly what you’re looking for. Foto wants to fill that void.

Jason Njoku announced Foto.com.ng today on his blog. Apparently they’ve been at it for about a year now, and he says SPARK has so far invested about $70,000 into Foto, with a further $80,000 to be spent in the course of 6 months, post beta launch.

Boasting a current database of 10,000 stock images (to expand hopefully to 100,000 by the end of 2014), categories include food, outdoor, couples, business etc. You can search for photos by category and orientation type. So far, searching is not very intelligent, something that Jason admits to. But he says they’re working on it. Cost of images range from N2500 to N7,500, depending on the desired resolution.

14 Comments

  • There are only a few things to consider that won’t make this a bad idea.
    1. Do you have the the exclusive rights for such photos when you buy them? If so, they will totally be good for billboard marketing and all types of advertising.
    2. How do they plan to market the product? They need to market very aggressively on major social networks especially Instagram
    3. Will they offer freebies(free photos) from time to time? If so, great idea

  • Bezaleel .O. Ashefor says:

    I think the prices are too high

  • Nice clean interface and Solid launch content. Well done!

  • OluwaTobi Banjoko says:

    It’a a great idea but the prices are too expensive, 7500 for 11mb picture?. Even more expensive than Shutterstock. Except the photos are meant for high end clients only.

  • Sayo C says:

    Great Initiative, but as mentioned earlier, the prices are way too high. Especially since the content is not exclusive and other people can use it for free once I upload it onto my website and once it’s part of Google’s image search. I may contemplate it if it costs anything less than N250.

    The second thing I noticed is the lack of diversity of the photos. Many were taken in the studio and are just different shots/angles of the same model so the photos kind of all look alike.

    The final issue for me is the online purchasing habits of Nigerians. How interested are they in this sort of product? It seems nice to have but non-essential considering the editorial standards of most websites in Africa.

  • Anon says:

    Nice job Biggie.

    I think you should bring down the price mehn.. N2,500 for 500kb? Why not do it like this, top categories like business, marketing et al prices should be high while others should be low.

    Remember, we are in Nigeria, even though Nigerians are not only your target market, that doesn’t mean the price should be damn high.

    Offer free photos for bloggers to use, and watermark em in order to get back your credit. And this will bring about customers.

    P:S I will be moving to mars late this year, you should come give me some FOTO.

  • plastiq says:

    My guess is that FOTO has an army of intellectual property lawyers. Nigerians mess with intellectual property like they own it; as a photog, I hope this project succeeds.

  • standout says:

    I think this is way too expensive especially when they intend to target bloggers….. probably the largest prospective buyers. Picture collections are not dynamic… just a bunch of studio shot i could do on ma own. well nice idea tho… just requires improvement and some real looking pictures.

  • Prince Oluwasegun Abisagbo says:

    I think this service is for high end clients and not for the everyday blogger/web designer/graphic artist.
    Prices are really too high, compared to global sites

  • N2500 for a pic?……hmmmmm

    *Grabs camera phone*

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