A new streaming platform has launched out of Dallas that’s available to viewers worldwide via an iOS and Android app. But, it’s different from what you typically binge—AfroLandTV is being touted as the first-ever online Pan African streaming platform.
Dubbed ‘The Netflix for the Global Pan African Diaspora,’ AfroLandTV curates original TV shows and movies that are African, African American, Black European, Caribbean, and Afro-Latino.
The African diaspora is defined by the African Union as “people of African origin living outside the continent, irrespective of their citizenship and nationality and who are willing to contribute to the development of the continent and the building of the African Union.”
It’s a market that Founder Michael Maponga recognized was long neglected by mainstream television. Most of the time, he says, many incredible Pan African pieces are left undiscovered because they don’t have a platform to call home.
Zimbabwe-born Maponga was raised in Dallas and has pursued a successful acting career (you can watch him in Finding Mother 2), but is now known as the brainchild behind AfroLandTV.
Through his company, Maponga is able to give filmmakers a distribution platform to share their work. His idea behind AfroLandTV has always been helping others—”people that never had an opportunity to get on a global scale and showcase their stories now have a platform,” Maponga previously told Dallas Innovates. “They see this as a mechanism to grow their dream.”
And there’s a huge demand for it, too.
Nigeria’s film industry—referred to as Nollywood—is the second-largest in the world, producing more than 2,500 films a year, according to Maponga. Nielsen reports that African Americans in the U.S. lead all demographics in watching television, with more than 50 hours averaged a week.
Maponga also points to mega box office hits such as “Black Panther” and “The Lion King,” which indicate the demand for Pan African-themed stories.
“AfroLandTV is for everyone,” he said in a launch announcement. “The stories featured on AfroLandTV are universal stories told from an African/Black perspective. We’re sharing great stories you never knew existed.”
The AfroLandTV app is available in the Apple and Google app stores and can be streamed on iPhone, Android, Apple TV, Android TV, Amazon Fire TV, and its website. Content ranges from comedy and drama to documentary and Nollywood. A subscription costs $3.99 a month with a 30-day free trial.
“For too long there has been a misconception about Pan Africa and people of African/Black descent,” Brittin Maponga, AfroLandTV’s chief of branding, said. “AfroLandTV is our response to bridging cultural discrepancies within the global Black community.”
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