(Ecofin Agency) - After its first-ever investment in Africa’s creative industry last month, the International Finance Corporation is exploring further investments in this sector, in conjunction with Sony Group Corporation.
The International Finance Corporation (IFC) and Sony Group Corporation have signed a partnership agreement to explore investment opportunities in creative businesses in Africa. The two signees made the announcement on October 12, 2023.
In detail, the IFC and Sony will seek investment opportunities in seed and early-stage African start-ups in film, photography, fashion, music, animation, and other sectors. Their partnership aims to accelerate the growth of Africa's creative industries. The latter, it is worth noting, generates $4.2 billion a year, but accounts for just 2.9% of creative goods exports and less than 1% of the continent's GDP. In 2019, only 1.1% ($22 million) of total investment by African start-ups went to the creative and cultural industries.
However, despite struggling to access financing, creative African startups keep stirring the interest of foreign investors and institutions, because of their growth potential. On September 19, the IFC announced its first investment in Africa's creative and cultural industries. The institution made a $3.4 million equity investment in the Ivorian craft and fashion sales platform, Anka. The investment was aimed at strengthening Anka's activities and opening up its platform to an additional 100,000 artisans, by 2030.
A few days before the deal between IFC and Sony was announced, a major Africa-focused creativity forum–the Création Africa forum–was held in Paris, from October 6 to 8. The forum gathered African creators from various sectors, to exchange ideas and showcase their work.