Econet CEO Hardy Pemhiwa says the company is targeting to be in 15 countries by end of 2017. Photo / ENGAGE

On this week’s ‘CNN Marketplace Africa’, host Eleni Giokos speaks with Hardy Pemhiwa, the CEO of Econet.

Speaking on the company’s investments in media distribution, Pemhiwa discusses his aim to expand Econet throughout Africa and the company’s recent partnership with Netflix.

Beginning his interview with Giokos, Pemhiwa outlines his aims for 2017: “So today Econet is in 12 African countries. Our ambition is that by the end of this year, we’ll be sitting on 15 [countries] of English speaking Africa, covering telecoms, media and technology.”

As a result of their acquisition of Neotel in South Africa, Econet is now the largest fibre broadband terrestrial owner in Africa with access to 50 million subscribers.

Giokos asks Pemhiwa to outline how Neotel will influence the future growth of the company, and Pemhiwa responds: “We know this business. We have [had] fibre broadband players for years, that’s where we come from. We have the pedigree; we have the experience… So we’re very confident that Neotel is going to be a very big contributor to our business.”

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Giokos moves on to talk about Econet’s recent deal with Netflix. Pemhiwa explains that today’s generation is looking for something different when it comes to media and technology.

Pemhiwa tells ‘CNN Marketplace Africa’: “The generation that we see today are people that want to watch what they want, where they want, when they want… We’re not in the age where Africa used to wait for 20 years before things that have developed in Europe or the U.S. come to the continent.”

As viewing habits evolve and change across the continent, Giokos asks Pemhiwa to explain what appeals to African audiences, to which he responds: “Sports, sports, sports and of course, local movies. I think Nollywood has shown us just how much Africa loves its own content. And I think that as we progress, Africa is saying ‘We want to be able to tell our own story.’”

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‘CNN Marketplace Africa’ airs Friday 19 May at 1815 EAT on CNN International

The programme also airs at the following times:

Saturday 20 May at 1815 EAT and 0300 EAT

Sunday 21 May at 0915 EAT and 0400 EAT

Monday 22 May at 1945 EAT



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