Paul Ikhane is the CEO, Exodus Entertainment (which is a new and effective Entertainment Distribution platform for CDs/DVDs). He hails from Nigeria, and is leading the path in bettering the distribution platforms in the country.
- What challenges have you faced so far to get where you are?
We have basically had it rough trying to get funds to create awareness of the platform via publicity. It was initially difficult trying to convince people, most especially stakeholders that this is the way to go to move the industry forward.
- Are the industries more professional today, than when you first started? How?
Yes, and I think this is as a result of more professionals coming into the industry. Lawyers, Artiste Managers, Cinematographers, Directors, etc this is has helped in better management of the contents right from production. But there is still room for improvement.
- Why do you think, Nigeria has managed to become such a formidable force in the film industry?
Ingenuity and the determination of the average Nigerian to succeed regardless of the circumstance; also the fact that we tell our own stories
- Do you see Nigeria, as having attained world class status in terms of content and production? And what about the rest of Africa?
No we haven’t attained world class standard yet, but we are close, as for content we have seriously grown in the last two years and we are beginning to experience growth in production as well.
I think the rest of Africa is not doing badly too, South Africa, Kenya, Ghana and many other countries have also experienced growth, it might be slow but it is significant. And just to mention, there are even film makers now in South Sudan.
- The issue of distribution is one that is a challenge for many, what do you think is the way forward?
I think of two things:
1. In Africa we don’t have an entertainment distribution BRAND like they have in the West and I think that is our biggest challenge, so we need to create one. And that is what Exodus Entertainment seeks to do in the next couple of years.
2. We as stakeholders have not constructively engaged policy makers in terms of the challenges we face as an industry in Africa. If we must move forward we need to get our legislative arm of our governments to enact laws that will protect our interests.
- What do you hope people will take away from the BFMA conference?
The major opportunity I think the BFMA conference offers, is Business Network, aside from the information that will be shared by speakers and panelists. And I think this is kind of platform should come to Nigeria and other parts of Africa, maybe regional.
Compiled by Christine Mwai.