France’s Trace has acquired African VOD service provider Buni.tv, which launched in 2012 as one of the first VOD services on the continent. The acquisition aims to support the launch the Trace Play VOD platform, scheduled to take place later in the year.
“We are currently recognised as one of the three largest subscription video on demand (SVOD) services on the continent, alongside Iroko TV and Nasper’s Showmax,” explained Marie Lora-Mungai, CEO at Buni.tv in a Facebook post.
“Critical mass is crucial for the success of any VOD service and as the African VOD market becomes increasingly competitive and sophisticated, we are thrilled to join forces with a solid and forward-thinking partner such as Trace.” Lora-Mungai went on to highlight that the success of any VOD service in Africa depends on whether it can source and offer high quality original African content.
Upon the launch of Trace Play, Buni.tv will be moved under and hosted by that service, with plans for both services to fully merge. Current subscribers of Buni.tv will receive access to the full TRACE Play catalogue, which is tipped to include thousands of hours of African and international content at launch. Promotional offers are also in the pipeline for registered users that are not subscribers, to enable them to try out Trace Play at preferential rates.
Buni.tv is funded by ACP Cultures+, the Support Programme of the ACP cultural sector, implemented by the Secretariat of the ACP countries and funded by the EU. It’s currently available on various partner platforms such as set-up boxes, mobile TV services and other online platforms.
Headquartered in France, Trace is an international brand and media group active urban music and sports celebrities. Founded in 2003 by Olivier Laouchez, it has launched 18 pay TV and digital platforms in 160 countries and boasts over 80 million subscribers.