Spotlight on Africa at CMW – June 8-10, 2023


Africa’s population is 1.4 billion people across 54 countries on a land mass of 30.37 million sq. km (11.7 million sq mi) – roughly three times the size of Canada. It houses Northern Africa – one of the fastest-growing music market regions under MENA. It is home to the growing popularity and expansion of Afrobeats from Nigeria.

North Africa (under Middle East and North Africa region or MENA) is the Fastest Growing Region in the World

In response to the phenomenal growth in Africa, the International Federation of Phonographic Industries (IFPI) has – for the first time – reported on Sub-Saharan Africa as well as the Middle East and North Africa (MENA). With exceptional revenue growth of 35.0%, MENA was the world’s fastest growing region in 2021.  Sub-Saharan Africa (SSA) showed consistent revenue growth (9.6%) in in 2021, with South Africa indicating a +2.6% increase year-over-year. Consistent with all other regions, SSA saw an increase in revenues from streaming, especially ad-supported streaming where revenues rose by 56.4%.

Africa’s music streaming market projected to reach $314.6m by 2026

Areas previously inaccessible are now developing music industry infrastructures to help nourish and grow the local music scene. The Sub-Saharan Africa generated $70.1M of revenues from recorded music in 2021 – one of the first times IFPI has posted an official industry figure for the region. That was up by 9.6% year-on-year. Research firm Dataxis predicts Africa’s annual music streaming revenues will grow from $92.9m in 2021 to $314.6m by 2026, citing internet penetration rates as the main ceiling on this growth, as streaming cannot go faster than infrastructure. Dataxis also noted that the majority of revenues are still coming from a minority of African countries: around 40% from South Africa, and 86% from that country plus Egypt, Nigeria, Morocco and Algeria – the top five markets in the region.

The Phenomenon of Afrobeats

African music is slowly making its footprint on the world with Nigerian musical exports and the introduction of Afrobeats. Afrobeats has encouraged a whole generation of musicians from Nigeria, across the continent, and maybe even globally.

One of the factors contributing to this is the Nigerian migration and diaspora which is vast and expansive. Nigerians are spread out throughout the world. Over and above this, the Nigerian community is a tight knit one, no matter where they are in the world. They are also generally quite successful while strongly maintaining their attachment to their culture. As a community, they continuously prioritize the consumption of their culture and this includes watching Nollywood movies and listening to or producing their music. This has influenced the massive export of their music to all these places. These three ingredients make for the perfect recipe for a global music takeover.

The impact of Afrobeat’s collaborations with global styles has even further cemented the genre and Africa in the West with international superstars joining forces with some of Africa’s most exciting artists including Major Lazer and Mr. Eazi, Wizkid and Beyoncé, and Burna Boy and Chris Martin.

Another major artist to invest in the potential of the African market is an English singer-songwriter, Ed Sheeran. Since the South African tour of his album Divide, he has been mixing things up music-wise. Recently he has released dance tracks like Bad Habits which are already different from his usual love songs. With this evolution of his sound, the artist has embarked on his first-ever afrobeat track as he hopped onto the remix of Nigerian superstar Fireboy DML’s hit single Peru. While Sheeran has been venturing into other genres of music Afrobeats is not something anyone would have expected from Sheeran next as it is an even further step away from his normal sound.  This bodes untold potential for co-productions between Canadians and music creators on the African continent.

CMW 2023 will welcome international export offices from a variety of countries in town to do business with Canadians.




Saturday, June 10, 2023    10:00 AM-10:45 AM EST               (Piers 2/3)


(Panel Discussion) Can Afrobeats be authentically created locally throughout the diaspora regions? This panel of Afrobeats industry veterans and brand specialists will highlight the influence of social media in the growth of Afrobeats style; the art of Live Performance and its importance in the development of the movement.

The conversation will conclude with a brain analysis on solutions to the challenges faced by the Afrobeats movement in achieving greater exposure, recognition and success.



Julz Ossom, Founder, African Music Week (Canada)

  • Adesegun Adeosun Jr.  CEO / Founder.  AFRONATION
  • Adesope Olajide : Broadcaster  UK
  • Eddie Hatitye – Music in Africa Foundation (Zimbawe)
  • Rickie Davies – Promoter (Ghana, UK)

Produced in collaboration with African Music Week (Canada)



Saturday, June 10, 2023    11:00 AM – 12:15 AM         (Harbour Ballroom B&C)

Spotlight on Africa Panel: How to Break into the African Music Market: Unpacking Rights, Distribution, and Collaboration Across Border

Join our expert panel as we explore the exciting opportunities and challenges of breaking into the African music market. Our discussion will focus on the essential elements of success, including understanding the complexities of rights, distribution, and collaboration across borders. With our experienced panelists, you’ll learn how to navigate the African music market, build meaningful relationships, and maximize your impact on this vibrant and rapidly expanding industry. Whether you’re an artist, manager, or industry professional, you won’t want to miss this valuable discussion on breaking into the African music market.

MODERATOR:  Amira Guetif, (North Africa – Tunisia)


  • Pfanani Lishivha (He / him),CEO – SAMPRA (South Africa)
  • Eloi Mugabe (He / him)- Audiomack Ambassidor (Rwanda)
  • Natasha Stambuli (She / her), Boomplay (Tanzania)
  • Jiggs Thorne (He / him), Founder – Bushfire Fest; Director, Booker -eSwatini
  • Tosin Sorinola (He / him), Director of Artist & Media Relations – Boomplay
  • Brahim El Mazned – Founder Visa For Music
  • Sivan Pillay- Trace TV (largest broadcaster in Africa reaching over 400 Mil)




Pre-arranged international meetings. Meet one-on-one with members of the delegations from Africa in a two-hour session of curated, pre-arranged meetings customized to your objectives. By appointment only. Contact the International Marketplace for details ( (Int’l. Marketplace – Border Breakers – Export Development Series)