Fusion Capital announces its partnership with Xtra Publishing Limited, a free newspaper ‘X News’ and digital content company with a 40% equity stake in the company. Xtra is set to be the pioneer in the continent in its efforts to leverage free print and digital services in an attractive new media hybrid model.
The company launched the region’s first free newspaper in March and is already the 3rd largest newspaper in Kenya. The newspaper will be supported by online and mobile services targeted at the young professional demographic. IPSOS/Synovate readership surveys confirm that the newspaper has secured the young, urban professional readership, providing near zero wastage for advertisers. The investment by Fusion will be utilized in advancing IT and editorial systems, and for working capital requirements.
Kenya and East Africa is showing encouraging trends in digital news and entertainment dissemination. The statistics show impressive growth with internet usage having doubled between January 2010 and 2011, from 3 million to 7.5 million users. Usage further increased by another 65% between October 2010 and October 2011, rising to 14.3 million users. That figure corresponds to over 36%of the population having access to the Internet – the number continues to grow. (WAN-IFRA 2012)
“The future for print media is free news, and the future for media as a whole is digital web and SMS services. Companies are looking for an efficient and targeted way to promote their products and this is what Xtra will offer. The partnership with Fusion will go a long way in ensuring we realise our vision”, said Paul Marshall, CEO of Xtra Publishing Limited.
Luke Kinoti, Group Chief Executive at Fusion comments: “we are excited to have partnered with an experienced and motivated team of entrepreneurs in this unique venture, the first of its kind in the region”.