Edo creative industry rakes in over N500m in revenue
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Edo creative industry rakes in over N500m in revenue

... analysts see prospects for growth, encourage corporate sponsorship for sustainability

Stakeholders and entertainment actors in Edo State have valued the revenue accrued to the sector in 2021 to about N500 million owing to the growing opportunities and investment attracted to the creative and entertainment industry during the period.

A cross-section of stakeholders, who spoke with journalists, said the entertainment sector in the state has continued to record impressive growth, which is creating job opportunities for youths in the state.

The growth, analysts say, is attributable to the ingenuity of youths who are harnessing opportunities in the digital economy, especially skit-making and comedy on social media; active nightlife with growing hospitality sector; improved business environment facilitated by reforms of the Governor Godwin Obaseki-led administration, particularly in the provision of security and the inflow of Diaspora receipts.

The analysts estimated that the sector would have generated up to N500m in revenue from digital revenue, show tickets and other sources.

Cumulatively, the concerts organized in the state in the last quarter of 2021 witnessed not less than 30,000 attendants who graced sold-out music and comedy shows, among others.

Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of Engraced Events and Entertainment, Emmanuel Itoto, said the entertainment sector in the state has continued on an upward trajectory, recording a lot of activity in the previous year.

According to him, “For several months, we have been having high-quality events. We had the Cyclers Concert, MC Casino’s Game of Jokes and IGoSave’s concert. All these shows sold out 3,000 capacity facilities. There was also the McEdoPikin Show.

“There were many more shows and the level of organization has shown that entertainment is now a serious business in Edo State. A lot of people are now coming out to have a really nice time. We have the capacity to host A-list artists and deliver a really good show.”

Attributing the trend to the government’s security reforms, he said, “A lot of people are encouraged to come out for the shows because of the improved security situation in the state. The people are sure that when they are returning to their houses by 2 am or thereabouts, they are safe.”

However, he noted that the shows have been mainly sponsored by individuals and their business partners as against the industry standard whereby corporate sponsors are actively involved in hosting the shows.

“We need more corporate sponsors as we know the kind of expenses and effort needed to put a high-quality show together. Corporate sponsors are needed for sustainability,” he added.

A Disc Jockey, DeeJay Joe, who has played in a number of the shows in Benin, said the number of shows in the metropolis has grown astronomically, owing to the growth of the entertainment industry.

“For those of us who are actively involved, we see it as promising. A lot of growth has happened and we anticipate more activities in the New Year. With the nightlife booming, a lot more people are more likely to come out to attend shows.”

Managing Director, Edo State Investment Promotion Office, Kelvin Uwaibi, noted that the state continues to attract investment because of the investment-friendly posture of the state government.

He noted that analysts have estimated revenue in the entertainment space to be close to N500 million owing to growing activity in the sector.

“We are really impressed with activity in the sector and would want more investors, especially as the state government has set up the Victor Uwaifo Creative Hub to drive growth in the creative industry,” he added.

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