February 17, 2019

Digital Media Propels Growth in Kenya’s Entertainment and Media Industry


By Hellen Nanzia

Kenya’s entertainment and media industry value hit Ksh.191 Billion last year, in a 2015-2019 report by Price Waterhouse Coopers (PwC) released last week. This being a 13.3 percent increase from 2013, when the sector was valued at Ksh.155 Billion. The audit firm added that indications are that the industry will be worth Ksh.350 Billion by 2019.

In its report, Entertainment and Media Outlook: 2015 – 2019 (South Africa – Nigeria-Kenya) projections for Kenya’s entertainment are positive, with the sector expected to be a new frontier for job creation. Growth is to be driven by increased access to ICT services, with the internet set to be the largest driver of growth, followed by television and radio.

Internet advertising is expected to be the fastest growth at a compound annual growth rate of 16.8 percent. Traditional media, such as TV, radio and newspapers, will continue to be the first choice for most Kenyan advertisers in the near future, added PwC, however TV advertising is projected to overtake radio ads in 2016.

According to Vicki Myburgh, the entertainment and media leader for PwC Southern Africa, consumers are choosing offerings that combine a personalized user experience with an intuitive interface and easy access. “This includes shared physical experiences, like cinema and live concerts, which appear re-energized by digital and social media.” She added that this year’s outlook shows consumer demand for entertainment and media experiences will continue to grow, but towards video and mobile.

“Increasingly, though, it is clear that consumers see no significant divide between digital and traditional media — what they want is more flexibility, freedom and convenience in when, where and how they interact with their preferred content.” The report presents annual historical data for 2010–2014, and provides annual forecasts for 2015–2019 in 11 entertainment and media segments for South Africa, Nigeria and Kenya.

The report calls on media firms to focus on three key things to succeed: innovate around the product and user experience; develop seamless consumer relationships across distribution channels; and put mobile and video at the center of consumer experiences.

Aside from the internet, the report predicts that the fastest growth will be seen in video games, business-to-business and filmed entertainment. “But it is internet access itself that is acting as a driver of revenues in video games and film, creating new revenue streams by making over-the-top (OTT)/streaming or social/casual gaming viable to more consumers and thereby cancelling out physical falls,” added Myburgh.

Music, magazines and newspapers, which will show only moderate consumer growth, are three segments that face strong competition from the internet.

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