From Cyriacus Nnaji, Lagos
Digital entrepreneur and Chairman, Zinox Group, Leo Stan Ekeh has identified the Nigerian movie industry as the next biggest wealth creator in Africa.
Ekeh made this declaration at the 6th Edition of the Africa Magic Viewers’ Choice Awards (AMVCA) in Lagos recently.
The Zinox boss who was on hand to present the award for the best overall movie to Kenyan producer, Phoebe Ruguru for the movie 18 Hours, alongside Wangi Mba-Uzoukwu, Regional Director, M-Net West Africa, affirmed that the wealth-creating potential of the Nigerian movie industry is huge, noting that the industry’s capacity as the next goldmine will manifest in the second quarter of the 21st Century.
In his words: “I just thought I should encourage the superstars, the upcoming superstars, the script writers and the producers.
I think you have about 76 months to emerge in the second quarter of this century where you become the mega wealth producers of Africa.”
Ekeh, while congratulating the winners and the not-so-lucky nominees, pledged a dozen Zinox Whizkid tablets to the winners of the best overall movie category for donation to any school of their choice. He also urged stakeholders in the industry to stay on course and continue to interpret their roadmap and vision in order to ensure clarity of purpose.
“You are in a profession that you do not have to retire from. The older you get, the more quality assignments you get and the more money you make. So, I want to congratulate everyone and wish you a century filled with wealth,” he enthused.
Informally referred to as Nollywood, the Nigerian film industry reportedly produces about 50 movies per week, second only to India’s Bollywood—more than Hollywood in the United States. Although its revenues are not on par with Bollywood’s and Hollywood’s, Nollywood is believed to generate an impressive $590 million annually and one of Nigeria’s largest employer of labour with over a million people in its fold.