Recently, Flutterwave saved web-building platform, Disha, by acquiring it. Disha allows creators to easily build one-page websites on which they could curate their content and receive payment for their work—all without learning to code or the other technicalities involved in building a website.
Despite bootstrapping the business and growing their base to 20,000 users globally, Disha’s revenues were low; the platform made slightly above $1,000 in monthly recurring revenue.
The global creator economy is worth over $100 billion and Africans are shut out of most of it. African creators—independent writers, artists, social media influencers, videographers, gamers, podcasters—struggle to earn a living from their content because of payment problems and the low earning power of their audience.
Before the creation of homegrown Disha, Selar.co, and e-commerce platforms, Flutterwave stores and Paystack Storefront, African creators found it difficult to find the appropriate tools to share and monetise their content.
In this edition of Next Wave, we explore the opportunities available to African creators to finally tap into the global creator economy.
A huge chance for expansion
American payment processing company Stripe revealed in a blog that it has boarded a total of 668,000 creators who have collectively generated over $9 billion in revenue in the last decade. Nigeria’s Flutterwave wants to position itself as an ally to the creator class the same way Stripe has done.
Creator Blockchain platforms like OpenSea, Rarible and Gateway allowed Nigerian artist, Jacon Oshinachi, to sell three NFT arts worth $70,000 in just 10 days. There will be surely more big hits for Africans on that platform too.
To get into the booming short-video content industry, video-streaming platform, YouTube made iterations and created YouTube shorts. To be able to compete with TikTok and Instagram Reels, YouTube is trying to entice creators. One such move was targeted at Kenyan creators. Between 2021 and 2022, YouTube will pay Kenyan content creators about Ksh10.98 billion ($99 million) to create 15-second videos. Content creators can earn up to Ksh1.1 million per month for every video they upload.
In the nearest future, ear1 would help African professionals and public figures earn money by just offering access for a conversation. Similar to Cameo, ear1 just received a $520,000 pre-seed funding to incentivise access for all sorts of creators.
Who will take chances?
In a tweet announcing Disha’s acquisition, Flutterwave’s co-founder and CEO, Olugbenga Agboola, said it wants to support creators like Peace Itimi and Salem King. One major both content creators have in common is that they leverage platforms like YouTube, Twitter, Disha, Selar.co to connect with their fans and build communities.
Even though community platforms are not big (yet) in Nigeria, there is a huge opportunity here. According to Stripe, community platforms like Luma have seen a 150% increase in revenue, year-over-year, in 2021.
This year alone, Growth Strategist at Selar.co, Milton Tutu, told TechCabal in a call that Selar.co has paid $1,500,000 to creators. He went further to explain that Selar.co has paid more money to creators in the last three months than the entire of last year—₦100 million.
Selar.co has also experienced a boom in its numbers: from less than 100 merchants last year to over 17,000 merchants who sell more than one product on the platform, and over 80,000 users who buy digital products.
Tutu said although Selar.co got over 7,000 merchants in the past three months, organically, the company has the ambition to grow faster by educating more creators and creating a marketplace for creators and expanding the number of countries in which creators can receive money in the coming weeks.
As platforms that ally with content creators experience tremendous growth, African creators will continue to enjoy the support it is getting because of its huge potential for expansion.
Have a great week
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Sultan Quadri, Staff Writer, TechCabal.