Investment opportunities can come from anywhere. Often the most profitable are the ones that come from seemingly nowhere. The latest global opportunities to hit the scene come from emerging markets, like China and to an extent Africa.
“Tiger Global, a hedge fund run by an early investor in Facebook and Zynga, has put $8m (£5m) into an Anglo-Nigerian company distributing Nigerian films worldwide,” reports the Telegraph. “The Nigerian film industry, known as Nollywood, has grown at about 18pc a year and was worth almost $300m in 2010. It produced about 2,000 new films in 2010 and that number is growing at 15pc a year, according to research by management consults McKinsey & Co.”
While the Nollywood industry is largely unstructured and unregulated, the cost to make such films is much cheaper than Hollywood, ranging between just $15,000 and $40,000 a film – roughly the cost of a new car in the US. The primary issue with getting Nollywood rolling is the lack of formal distribution channels, but this is an issue that going digital will go a long way to remedy. According to the Telegraph, the fund now has a stake in iROKO Partners, YouTube’s largest African partner. The company will distribute the films made through its website irokotv.com and others. iROKO already has agreements in place with iTunes, Amazon, Vimeo and Dailymotion.
Tiger cub Chase Coleman, the manager of Tiger Global, has an eye for global opportunities. His fund has been wildly successful. Last year, Tiger Global was up 45% through mid-December, and, so far this year, Tiger Global’s top 20 picks have returned over 19%. In addition to investments in Zynga, Facebook and iROKO, some of Coleman’s top picks include Apple (AAPL), Google (GOOG), Baidu (BIDU), LinkedIn (LNKD).