Stephina Zwane and Salamina Mosese
Stephina Zwane and Salamina Mosese, co-founders of Sorele Media, launched Aza TV on 20 May 2015. (Image: www.azatv.co.za)

African television lovers can now access local content in a new digital media space through Aza TV, an online platform that aims to deliver the best in entertainment, lifestyle, talk and inspirational television by Africans, to Africans.

Aza TV, which celebrated its one-year milestone last month, was launched on 20 May 2015 by media personalities Salamina Mosese and Stephina Zwane through their media company, Sorele Media, a 100% female-owned African media content company.

What makes Aza TV different is that it is online and not on traditional TV screens. It is VOD, meaning video on demand, so it is available 24 hours, and all shows on the platform can be watched at the viewer's leisure whenever he or she chooses.

'We wanted to approach TV production in a new way'

In a recent interview with the Gauteng Film Commission (GFC), Mosese explained the inspiration behind Aza TV. "We named it Aza TV, Aza meaning 'powerful' in Swahili," she said. "We wanted to approach TV production in a new way."

Both Zwane and Mosese are passionate about providing alternatives to mainstream media distribution and consumption.

"We wanted to see how best we could encourage people to consume media in a different way, and to find a way to ensure that the producer of the content benefits and not just the broadcaster," Mosese said.

While Aza TV is very still in start-up phase, the two women are proud to have made it past the one-year mark. "It was a daunting undertaking, and every day is a learning opportunity for us," Mosese said.

100 000 impressions in first year of launch

By Africans, to Africans
By Africans, to Africans - television content accessible at the viewer's leisure through Aza TV's online platform. (Image: www.azatv.co.za)

Aza TV has four channels - Talk, Entertainment, Inspirational and Lifestyle - and different shows under each of these categories, all of which are accessible through www.azatv.co.za or the AzaTV App. With seven different programmes on offer, there's something for everyone.

Mosese says their target market is Africans aged between 14 and 40 years old. And the numbers indicate that they've already started reaching this market - Aza TV hit 100 000 impressions in its first year of launch. "So now we need to grow these numbers and keep our audiences coming back," she said.

The early success didn't come without its challenges, however. "Starting a business is always challenging," Mosese said. "Raising funding was very time-consuming, and then operating it and keeping content fresh and current is another challenge. Another challenge will always be the cost of data," she added.

"However, AzaTV is a whole new medium for South African producers, so it is exciting to be able to develop content that can be easily consumed and accessed. It presents unique opportunities to get even more creative."

Source: staff reporter

Contact the Gauteng Film Commission