Salamina Mosese and Stephina Zwane are no strangers to South African television. Both practically grew up in front of our screens in their roles as presenters and actresses – particularly in sitcom Abo Mzala and Scandal, respectively – but now these ladies are aiming to build a name behind the scenes with the launch of a new online TV network.
AzaTV (Aza meaning “powerful” in kiSwahili) will be launching tomorrow under Mosese and Zwane’s company, Sorele Media.
“We started out as friends as teenagers,” Zwane told htxt.africa. “Going into business together was the natural thing to do since we were both in media and we love working together. We also have the same passion for the industry and Africa as a whole.”
“AzaTV was inspired from wanting to see more content by Africans, for Africans on the go,” she explained. “It’s is for the Afropolitan on the go as it’s targeted at the more discerning 21st century consumer with a specific interest in African content.”
Sorele Media employed the services of a company called NovoSense to work on the network’s technological aspects.
Having many years of experience both on and off-screen gave the pair a broader perspective as to what viewers would like to see and how it can be packaged, they said. However, dealing with new media, especially online TV, has been the biggest challenge for them.
“This is because we are a new brand and getting certain stakeholders on board is not easy regardless of our gender,”added Mosese.
Content on Aza TV will include originally-produced local content such as Aza Muzika, Yummy Mammi and The Sit Down and content from the rest of the continent will be added at a later stage to appeal to a vast audience.
The online TV network is slowly seeing a rise in African entrepreneurs launching their own networks, but this didn’t phase Mosese and Zwane as they’re mapping out their own journey, they said.
“The beauty of the online space in Africa is that it is new and relatively untapped. Everyone coming in has the ability to carve out a niche market for themselves. We are not necessarily competing with other companies,” they said.
About AzaTV’s future, Mosese and Zwane hope the network will be able to reach a wider audience on the continent and beyond and become synonymous with quality programming that celebrates Africa in all its diversity.
Keep an eye on the AzaTV website tomorrow for the official launch.