By Prince Osuagwu
French premium television channel, CANAL+ has put a foot forward in its quest to strengthen African content development reach, by just acquiring Nigeria’s channel, ROK Tv recently. As part of the acquisition, ROK founder, Mary Njoku, will continue in a leadership role as Directeur General of ROK Productions SAS, and maintains a material shareholding in the company.
Meanwhile, as part of the transaction, ROK’s parent company, IROKO Ltd will also take full control of the JV IROKO+, the number one Subscription Video On Demand, SVOD platform in French-speaking Africa.
ROK will produce thousands more hours of Nollywood content to deliver movies and original TV series for CANAL+ Group’s audiences in French-speaking Africa. CANAL+ Group will continue to collaborate with IROKO Ltd, with non-exclusive content distribution of ROK content via the IROKOtv SVOD app.
ROK was incubated in 2013 by IROKO Ltd, a frontline African digital content distributor for Nollywood content.
Speaking on the acquisition, Mary Njoku says: “ROK has captured the imagination of millions of movie fans, and they have truly supported us as we’ve grown the company to celebrate and enjoy our African culture. I’m excited to be taking our platform on the next stage of its journey with CANAL+ Group, who share our passion for creating original content, supporting new talent and together, we have ambitious plans for the future.”
Jacques du PUY, CEO of CANAL+ International says, “Through this acquisition CANAL+ Group is very happy to develop and enhance the catalogue of Nollywood contents and expand the ROK brand inside and outside the African continent.”
In Africa alone, ROK has produced over 540 movies and 25 original TV series, making ROK one of the most prolific production houses in Nollywood.