Kenya telco Safaricom is planning to launch a new music app next month, with the company promising artists that will be able to upload and sell their music on the platform. The as-yet-unnamed service, which will be offered to some 28 million comms subs, will operate alongside the company’s existing Skiza Tunes music offering which has been up and running for the past 16 years.
Safaricom will retain the Skiza service and has promised to up rates for the 14,000 artists on the platform. While music sold via the offering – largely in the form of ringback tones – previously earned a 22% royalty, the company has raised musicians’ take to 30%. Artists will also get free workshops in copyright and entertainment law.
“The spirit of Skiza was to ensure that Kenyan artistes earn from their creativity,” says Safaricom CEO Bob Collymore. “We will commit to continue to explore more ways in which we can empower artistes to help them make a living from their work.”
The company is no stranger to innovation, having launched its Spark Venture Fund, a $1 million initiative, in November. Last year Safaricom also launched a new taxi-hailing service, Little Cab, to take on Uber in Kenya.