Masiyiwa announces Econet’s Kwese pay-sports television service

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ECONET founder Strive Masiyiwa, has announced a new pay TV service called Kwesé TV. Through a post on his Facebook page, Mr Masiyiwa highlighted how Econet had been working on the service for three years.

Econet founder Strive Masiyiwa

This is an almost direct reference to ipidi, the VOD service that the Econet Global group has been working on through its fibre services company Liquid Telecom. There has been mention of plans to white-label the ipidi service in different sub-markets across Africa. Kwesé (whose name means “everywhere” in Shona) would fit into the mould.

Though the official launch of ipidi is yet to be announced, a lot of work has been carried out to get it to launch, especially over the past year, including the securing of content from various studios and preparing a mobile app that will complement the service.

The announcement has also directed people to the Kwesé Sports website which is already active and is showing sports news and soccer matches that include European soccer which has been a huge favourite of pay TV subscribers.

The market leader in pay TV is DStv which has an extensive focus on local, regional and international sports. From these early shots from Kwesé, that show a keen interest in sports, Econet is out to enter the MultiChoice/DStv space.

You can read the full statement from Strive Masiyiwa below.

Upcoming launch of Kwesé TV

I’m excited to share some information with you about our newest business, one that’s been in the making for three years now. This is the first time I’ve publicly introduced any new venture on Facebook!

As Econet Global, we’re about to roll out a unique Pay TV service known as Kwesé TV which will offer exclusive sports and entertainment programming to African markets.

“Kwesé” means “everywhere” and “anywhere”!

Our new business will be built around Econet’s core capabilities of satellite communications, fibre optic networks, and mobile services.

What does this mean for Africa? I will tell you! We believe African consumers must have access to premium and exclusive TV programming at a price that is value for money.

Our satellite communications business, Liquid Sat, has already built a platform which allows us to deliver what is known as Direct TV to the home (DTH), in all the countries of Sub-Saharan Africa.

Our fibre optic company, Liquid Fibre, is the largest builder of terrestrial fibre in Africa. And, of course, Econet is one of the most experienced mobile network operators on the continent. These are just a few of the assets we’ll deploy in a unique way, never done before in Africa.

Econet, ipidi

Having infrastructure is one thing, but Kwesé TV’s success will depend on our ability both to acquire and also to develop new, high-quality and unique programming at an affordable price.

You may know of other companies in this market, most which either provide content that’s far too expensive, or… content that’s just so bad it’s not worth paying to see it, even if it’s cheaper.

We know you understand what the problem is… And I believe my team has developed an exciting product which will change that dynamic!

I’ve taught you on this platform before that as entrepreneurs, you mustn’t discuss your whole strategy in public. We’ve also discussed that if you see a problem or an unmet need: don’t complain, develop a solution! That’s what we are working to do at Kwesé TV!

As the “mobile generation,” we know you’re highly discerning about what you are willing to pay for. What I can share with you right now is that our new business called Kwesé TV will be what we call “multi-screen.” This means you can watch TV with a traditional TV, a smartphone, a tablet, and/or a computer.

__I can also share that our programming philosophy is: “Value for money, premium and exclusive content.”

As we move closer to our final launch, I’ll update you from time to time. In the meantime, please check out our sports website which offers free access to some of our content, including the Copa Del Rey Spanish Cup that I told you about recently.

Stay tuned! – TechZim