Media24, the print media unit of South African global Internet and entertainment company, Naspers, has acquired a 10 percent stake in South African music tech startup, NicheStreem for an undisclosed amount.
Cape Town-based NicheStreem specialises in building music streams for niche audiences in emerging markets.
Back in 2015, it launched its first niche music streaming service in partnership with WeChat. Known as Liedjie, which means “song” in Afrikaans, the streaming service is aimed at fans of Afrikaans music.
Liedjie caters to the over 7 million Afrikaans speakers both locally and abroad who are underserved by mass market streaming service.
The service now has over 40,000 music tracks, 1,000 human curated playlists and 11,000 registered users, with combine B2B and B2C revenues of US$200,000 generated thus far. It is available on Android and iOS for R49.99 per month.
Liedjie is currently only available in South Africa, but the startup plans to launch it in Namibia, the UK, Australia and New Zealand within the next six to eight months.
In January 2015, NicheStreem raised $250,000 in angel funding from a combination of local, and international angels from Germany, Britain and Turkey.
This fresh funds will be used to reach break-even (the point where total cost and total revenue are equal) with Liedjie within the next 12 – 18 months, and to launch a beta version of a second stream.
Also, Media24’s investment will see it use its resources and expertise to help increase the userbase of NicheStreem’s streams, starting with Liedjie.
“Media24 is constantly on the lookout for opportunities to provide an enriched and engaging user experience to the largest digital audience in the country, such as NicheStreem’s first product, Liedjie, which is aimed at the Afrikaans music streaming market,” said Andreij Horn, head of 24.com,
He added, “As part of this, we invest in local teams and startups that are adjacent to our core. It’s early days, but we are excited about the partnership and the positive reaction it sees across our channels.”
Although not explicitly stated, Media24’s investment could form part of NicheStreem’s US$1.5-million seed round, which opened in November 2016 and is now 50 percent complete