Netflix set to dominate African streaming market with 42% share by 2029

By Joseph Ekeng

In a strategic move, Netflix is poised to claim a substantial share of the African streaming on-demand video (SVOD) market, with projections indicating a commanding 41.9% by 2029. A recent report by Digital TV Research sheds light on the continent’s SVOD trajectory, forecasting a surge in subscriptions. By 2029, Africa is expected to boast a robust 18 million SVOD subscribers, marking a significant increase from the 8 million recorded at the end of 2023.

Leading the charge is Netflix, projected to secure first place with a staggering 7.55 million paid subscribers by 2029, representing a substantial gain of 3.4 million subscribers from the end of 2023. Simon Murray, Principal Analyst at Digital TV Research, highlights the evolving landscape of the Anglophone African SVOD sector, stating, “The SVOD sector in Anglophone Africa is evolving into a battle between Netflix and local player Showmax. Rich in local content and sports rights, Showmax now has access to NBCUniversal, Sony Pictures, and HBO content.”

Following closely behind Netflix is Showmax, forecasted to achieve 4.39 million subscribers by 2029, indicating a remarkable rise of nearly 3 million subscribers compared to 2023. Meanwhile, Amazon is estimated to capture 3.14 million subscribers, with Disney and other players expected to garner 1.54 million and 1.1 million subscribers, respectively.

In contrast, Apple TV is projected to exhibit the lowest growth, with an estimated 251,000 paid subscribers. Despite impressive growth across various platforms, SVOD penetration remains relatively modest, with only 7.7% of TV households expected to subscribe to at least one SVOD service by 2029.

The global subscription video-on-demand (SVoD) market has experienced rapid growth, with PwC forecasting that the industry will earn $14.8 billion in 2025, up from $7.7 billion in 2021, riding on an 85% growth of its internet access segment.

Earlier this year, Netflix disclosed substantial investments in content tailored for key African markets, including Nigeria, South Africa, and Kenya. As part of its ‘Socio-economic Impact’ initiative, Netflix revealed an investment exceeding $175 million in African content. Since entering Nigeria in 2016, Netflix has invested more than $23 million in producing Nigerian films, encompassing over 250 locally licensed titles and co-produced and commissioned film content. Notable Nigerian productions, such as “Jagun Jagun,” “Anikulapo,” “Blood Sisters,” “Far From Home,” “Shanty Town,” and “King of Boys,” have emerged as popular offerings on the platform.

In parallel, Showmax has experienced a 50% year-on-year growth in paying subscribers across Africa. Its 100-episode drama series, “Wura,” has garnered widespread acclaim. Amazon has also ventured into the African market, collaborating with Jade Osiberu on productions like “Gangs of Lagos” and other filmmakers, further highlighting the growing significance of the African SVOD landscape.

As the African SVOD market continues to evolve and expand, the competition between global giants like Netflix and local players like Showmax is set to redefine the continent’s entertainment landscape. With substantial investments and an appetite for diverse and engaging content, Africa’s streaming future looks bright.


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