Jason Njoku is the co-founder of IrokoTV, a mobile entertainment and internet TV platform that’s particularly popular for its impressive catalogue of African movies, particularly Nollywood. As glamorous as the business may seem today, the early days were not. The struggle was intense.
After failed attempts at previous businesses in the UK, Jason returned to Nigeria in 2010 to build relationships with local movie producers and purchase content rights for his new startup, IrokoTV. The kind of money required was not available to him. Undeterred, he made several efforts to raise money. Fortunately, a friend and business partner of his known as Sebastian did the impossible by investing £90,000 in Jason’s Iroko TV. Since then, the growth of IrokoTV has been remarkable.
The business has attracted about $40 million in investment funding from foreign venture capital investors. Its investors include Tiger Global, a New York-based private equity firm, and Investment AB Kinnevik, a Swedish venture capital investor. In January 2016, IrokoTV raised $19 million in additional funding to expand its business into Francophone countries in Africa.
Venture capital firms invest more than $140 billion every year in startups and growth businesses across the world. In Africa, venture capital is only just starting to surface and they’re very interested in funding highly-scalable businesses that have significant profit potential.
Jason Njoku has been able to successfully raise significant amounts of capital to grow a company that was described by Forbes Magazine as “the Netflix of Africa” by using a combination of business partnerships and venture capital.