October 17, 2023

Sony Announces New $10M Innovation Fund To Boost Africa’s Entertainment Startups

Sony Group has announced the establishment of the Sony Innovation Fund: Africa (SIF: AF) to support the growth of African entertainment businesses.

Sony Innovation Fund

The Sony Innovation Fund invests in technology-driven transformational companies shaping the future of business, entertainment, and society.

Since 2016, Sony has been participating in the ecosystem of new business creation worldwide, with SIF specifically investing in seed to early-seed companies.

The fund invests in startups bringing creativity and promising innovations to the world who’d benefit from partnering with Sony.

Sony also has the Innovation Growth Fund (IGF), established in 2019 through a joint venture with Daiwa Capital Holdings Co., and the Sony Innovation Fund: Environment, established in 2020.

Sony wholly funds all of the funds.

According to TechCrunch, the tech giant has made more than 100 investments in consumer and enterprise-facing businesses across sectors, including entertainment, robotics, and AI, from these funds.

The Sony Innovation Fund: Africa

The SIF: AF was established to invest in seed to early-stage startups in the entertainment industry in Africa, including startups in the gaming, music, movie, and content distribution sectors.

Sony has announced it is initially allocating $10 million towards such investments.

According to Partech Africa, in 2022, entertainment tech startups received $42 million, representing 0.9% of Africa’s total venture capital investments.

With the fund, Sony will continue to make value-added investments, and potential expansion of this activity will be considered based on its progress.

Read: The Black Book - Nigeria’s Fintech Leaders Fund First African Film To Top Netflix World Charts

Investing In African Entertainment With The IFC

In addition to SIF: AF, Sony has concluded a collaboration agreement with the International Finance Corporation (IFC) – the largest global development institution focused on the private sector.

IFC is actively investing in emerging countries, including startup companies in Africa.

In addition to financial investment, this collaboration will support the growth of the entertainment industry in Africa by leveraging the strength of both parties.

“The entertainment field has been a key area of focus for SIF since the beginning and will continue to be,” said Gen Tsuchikawa, CEO of Sony Ventures.

“Africa, in particular, has a vibrant community of creators and entreprenuers looking to invent new ways to enhance entertainment experiences for audiences, and that propelled Sony to establish SIF: AF.”

Sara Keenan

Tech Reporter at POCIT. Following her master's degree in journalism, Sara cultivated a deep passion for writing and driving positive change for Black and Brown individuals across all areas of life. This passion expanded to include the experiences of Black and Brown people in tech thanks to her internship experience as an editorial assistant at a tech startup.