Producers back plan to distribute Nollywood films in W/Africa

A proposed plan by a firm, FEST Management Limited Company, to create a distribution platform to promote sales of Nollywood movies within francophone Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS) member states and Cameroon, has received the backing of Nigerian movie producers.

The company’s Chief Executive Officer, Mr. Anthony Ogunjimi, who addressed members of Association of Movie Producers in Lagos recently, said his firm created “Project Nollywood for West Africa distribution platform” and has been issued a grant by the Federal Ministry of Finance to extend the market of the Nollywood movie industry to the French speaking countries in ECOWAS members states and Cameroon.

He explained that West Africa offers a large market with a population of over 180 million people to be explored.
Nollywood, Ogunjimi said, is an already booming industry with wide acceptance outside the shores of Nigeria. With the sub-regional body throwing its weight behind the distribution platform, the company boss said: “Leveraging on ECOWAS platform, will helpfast-track negotiations and access. The Nollywood industry players have an opportunity to actively participate in the movie industries in countries within the sub region and this is what we set out to achieve.”

The movie distribution platform, he said, aims to sell Nollywood movies in DVD formats across francophone ECOWAS member states and Cameroon.

“It also provides a platform for trade between the Nollywood industry, professional movie translators and distributors across the region. Based on the ECOWAS) mandate, FEST Ltd has designed this project to leverage the ECOWAS platform to promote cooperation and economic integration as well as social and cultural activities in member states.

“The concept is to build robust Nollywood movie distribution channels across the French speaking countries in ECOWAS member states & Cameroon to sell Nollywood movies in DVD formats.”

The concept is to have a platform covering all the Nollywood movie categories and catering for all target markets identified in the French ECOWAS members states. The value will be created by making Nigerian films available internationally through subtitling/translating Nigeria movies into French language, distributing movies at affordable prices to all residents in the ECOWAS countries and increasing the revenue Nollywood is adding to Nigeria’s GDP,” Ogunjimi explained.

Aside promoting the Nigerian cultural values to French speaking countries in ECOWAS members states and Cameroon, the FEST Management Limited Company, emphasised that the concept for the distribution platform has been formulated and the process of effective and efficient distribution is being formalised. On the way to achieve the distribution strategy, he said: “The Project Nollywood for West Africa concept has been created to assist the Nollywood movie producers and actors break into the West African market.

Using the ECOWAS platform, we intend to provide an opportunity for Nollywood movies to be distributed within the ECOWAS sub region and Cameroon. This will be achieved by breaking the language barriers as well as employing market penetration strategies. A dedicated website will soon be be launched for the platform.”
Responding after Ogunjimi’s presentations, President, Association of Movie Producers Ralph Nwadike said he and his members were excited by what the new platform set to achieve. Nwadike said he was forced to attend the event within a short notice, appealing to the FEST management to create a second opportunity for his members, who could not make it to the first presentation.

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