Kenyan music streaming platform Mdundo made payouts of KES 100M to African rights holders in the last 10 years. The company revealed this today as it marked its 10-year anniversary announcing that it’s also expecting to pay the same figure to artists in the current financial year.
Mdundo.com is one of Africa’s leading music services with 20.3m monthly active users across Kenya, Tanzania, Nigeria, Ghana, and South Africa. The company provides musicians with a real-time dashboard to control and manage their catalog as well as withdraw earnings from the service.
Currently based at Nairobi Garage // Kilimani, Mdundo was founded in 2012 where it sold music on “scratch card vouchers” similar to airtime purchases from corner shops but later it became a free service funded by advertising sales. The initial advertisers on the service were Airtel, Coca-Cola and Microsoft but today the service works with many pan-African FMCG brands and banks across the continent.
“Our digital music ecosystem has had significant growth over the last 10 years. Music partnerships have provided Mdundo’s premium product to 150m customers of through MTN Nigeria, MTN Ghana, Vodacom Tanzania and MTN Airtel, “ said Mdundo CEO, Mr. Martin Nielsen.
Nielsen also added, “We have also been able to partner with leading African record labels such as Mavin Records, Africori, emPawa, MAD, Slide Digital, Zeze Africa, Tamasha Records, CCA, Lynx, Entertainment, Black Market Records and Kings Music. Mdundo also licensing agreements with leading global record labels which include Warner Music Group, Universal Music and Believe Digital.”
More than 100,000 African Musicians are Registered on the Platform
Since its inception in 2012, Mdundo has more than 100,000 African musicians who have signed up on the Mdundo.com platform. It has grown from a user base of less than one million in 2016 to 13.8 million by the close of 2021. It is planning to grow its user base past 18 million by mid this year.
Mdundo on Nasdaq First North stock exchange
The company was in September 2020 listed on the Nasdaq First North stock exchange in Copenhagen to fast-track its growth across Africa.
Through this Mdundo aims at getting over 50m monthly active users as well as a positive EBITDA (earnings before taxes, depreciation and amortization) by 2025.
Recorded over 10 million Users across five key markets
In June this year, the company announced that it has recorded 290% user growth since the 2020 IPO. It’s user base currently stands at 4.9m in Nigeria, 3.7m in South Africa, 2.8m in Kenya and 2.4m in Tanzania.
“The company’s focus is to deliver a locally relevant music service for the mass-market across Africa with a geographical focus on Kenya, Tanzania, Nigeria, Ghana and South Africa,” Mr. Nielsen says.
Over 1.7 million international songs on its platform
By December 2021, Mdundo had 1.7 million international songs on its platform and 367,000 tracks uploaded by 122,000 African musicians, a 46 percentage point growth from December 2020. The company pays more than 50% of its income to music creators.
Paying subscribers accounted for 14% of Mdundo’s earnings in 2021, Nielsen said, as advertising revenue, from its free streaming service, grew by 63% after setting up sales teams in Nigeria and Tanzania to rapidly grow its commercial operations beyond Kenya.
The company is also doubling down its commercial focus to Ghana and Uganda, and expects greater revenue growth this year following a new advertisement deal that saw it quadruple its monthly revenue from displayed advertisements to DKK225,000 ($34,581).
Its overall income is also growing, doubling in the second half of 2021 to DKK 2.5 million ( $382,900) when compared to a similar period the previous year. Overall, it is projecting a 400% growth in revenue in its next full financial year.
Audiolock partnership to fight music piracy
Across Africa there are more than 20 music streaming services, including Sweden’s Spotify, which is in 44 African countries after expanding to an additional 38 countries in the continent last year. Nigeria-headquartered Boomplay is another popular streaming product.
In a widely competitive market, in 2020 Mdundo partnered with anti-piracy specialists Audiolock to remove infringing links for African music from unlicensed websites.
“We still see the biggest competition to our service as illegal consumption of music across the continent. This is still where the vast majority of people across Africa get their music from, unfortunately, and we aim to provide a great alternative to this.” said Mr Nielsen in an interview with Tech Crunch
From Nairobi Garage, its a huge congratulations to #TeamMdundo for the 10 year milestone and allowing us to be part of their story.