Afreximbank ratifies agreement with Silverbird Entertainment to build West Africa’s largest film and television studio in Nigeria

Afreximbank, an African import-export bank, recently closed a deal with Silverbird Entertainment at the Africa Investment Forum to build the largest recorded film and television studio in West Africa. As of the end of 2021, the bank’s total assets and collateral amount to approximately $25 billion, with its shareholders financing $4 billion.

Named the Ben Murray-Bruce Studios and Film Academy (BMB Studios and Film Academy), the complex will house a comprehensive studio along with an educational institution, for both domestic and international students, to develop the skills of individuals seeking to enter the industry. Areas such as cinematography, directing, filmmaking, gaming, music, post-production techniques, production, screenwriting, VFX, and animation will be taught.

The 32,725-square-meter facility at Eko Atlantic City will have numerous elements alongside the educational academy, including two large sound stages, a digital hub with music and broadcast studios, editing bays with multiple suites, production offices, screening and considerable background study. for outdoor decorations.

The project is planned to be a major boost to the current film and television sector within Nigeria and across the region, with the ultimate goal of attracting major productions to Nigeria, increasing the skills of local talent and attracting international talent.

Ms. Kanayo Awani, Executive Vice President of Intra African Trade Bank, commented: “The agreement we are signing today is of the utmost importance, not only because of the significant support it provides to Africa’s flourishing film industry, but especially because of the multi-purpose potential from the study to Serves a variety of sectors in the creative industries, from music and film to gaming and virtual reality.At Afreximbank, we recognize the power of Africa’s youth and creative talents in catalyzing Africa’s trade, create millions of jobs and promote the emergence of national and regional value chains. This industry is bankable and we aim to support its growth, expansion and sustainability. Afreximbank is proud to support this project.”

Another area of ​​growth around the project is the country’s growing construction empire. Henry Goudreau, an experienced contractor who has mentored building contractors and professionals around the world through his Golden Hard Hat mentoring program, said it’s another often-overlooked element in developing regions.

“Often we pay so much attention to what is being built that we forget who is building it.” He said. “The growth in infrastructure and construction planning in West Africa in recent years has been impressive. We have trained people from all over the world to become contraction professionals and take advantage of the growing need of the construction trade in areas around the world.”

Founder of HG Associates, Goudreau is optimistic about the opportunities in the sector specifically in developing countries and regions. “Whether in North America or abroad, construction is not going anywhere. In fact, it is increasing like never before. The current climate offers many opportunities to teach best practices.”

Silverbird Group founder Ben Murray-Bruce opined that the development will accelerate the rapid growth of Africa’s creative sector.

“From Netflix
at Madison Square Gardens in New York, the public is delighted with the magic of African storytelling. Now more than ever the African continent needs the world-class technical skills and facilities that will propel our creative industries to the next level. BMB Studios and Film Academy is a response to this need and I believe it will be a catalyst to drive agility, expertise and innovation in the African film and television industries.”

He added that business models within the studio for revenue growth will vary to account for the versatility of the creative industries within the studio’s walls.

“The Studio will be an environment where content can be produced, managed and distributed digitally. The technical infrastructure will be the most advanced in West Africa designed to handle the high-bandwidth demands of media companies; prepared for the future to manage the expansion of new media content”.

“We are creating a truly global platform for excellence in filmmaking, storytelling, and professional development. By 2030, I want BMB Studios and the Film Academy to represent the pinnacle of what a studio and educational institution can be.”

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