Championing black excellence

BET in Africa has become a leading proponent of black culture in regions around the continent since its launch in 2015

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The primary goal of the channel is to champion black excellence across the continent through a range of programmes and 360-degree campaigns that provide their audiences with immersive experiences. They air entertainment that both uplifts and educates their primarily black audience, speaking to the needs and interests of this community. They’re constantly innovating new formats on the channel, including BET Breaks, which will air locally in January 2019.

Part of BET in Africa’s mission is to be a voice for the black consumer, providing informative content on a “glocal” scale —getting the right balance of local and international content that speaks to the needs of their African viewers. They believe they’ve succeeded in achieving this over the past few years and will continue to grow and expand their footprint with excellent content around issues that matter.

2018 highlights

Reflecting on the past year, BET in Africa has spent 2018 building on their reputation of being the brand of choice for their black viewers. From testing new programmes and formats to honouring black talent, both globally and locally through award shows like Black Girls Rock! and the Soul Train Awards, it has been an impressive year for them as a channel.

BET in Africa provides a platform for young, talented artists and performers to find a voice. For example, Nomalanga Shozi, a 23-year-old Presenter emerging from the small town of Port Shepstone on the east coast of South Africa, recently found herself interviewing top performers on the red carpet of the Soul Train Awards in Los Angeles, including the likes of Krystal Garner, Normani, Robert Glasper and Kali Uchis.

This is part of Nomalanga’s duties as the brand-new BET Breaks Presenter. This is an international format show that features the latest celebrity news and gossip, which BET in Africa is pioneering on the continent. Nomalanga will be representing Africa when the show airs locally from January 2019 on Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays.

Another way through which BET in Africa is using its footprint to uplift local creatives is through the successful fashion programme, Made in Africa. Hosted by Presenter, Designer and aspiring Producer, Nandi Madida, Made in Africa sees two designers from the continent go head-to-head in new challenges each week.

The ultimate winner will receive the opportunity to display their original creations to consumers in a national retailer.

One of the annual highlights on the BET calendar is the BET Awards, which were hosted by Jamie Foxx this year and paid homage to the rise of African culture on an international stage. On the night, African artists that BET in Africa has worked closely with to empower and enable their craft, took home top honours. These honourees included Nigerian Performer, Davido, South African Artists Sjava, Distruction Boyz and Cassper Nyovest.

This year, a large part of their mission was to honour the legacy of Madiba across their platform. Thus, as part of the BET Awards and the Madiba Centenary, VIMN Africa hosted the Global Good Dinner, where the Basketball Player, Bismack Biyombo, was honoured for his work on his “Child in Africa” project that primarily focusses on uplifting children in his home country of the Congo. Complementing this celebration of Madiba’s legacy was the panel discussion BET in Africa hosted with prominent South Africans.

The award show, Black Girls Rock! is another important initiative that BET in Africa supports. This is because empowering and honouring black excellence forms the foundation of the BET philosophy. This annual award show is the culmination of black female brilliance and honours leaders in industry while providing role models for young black women around the world to look up to.

Changing the African narrative

While their programming and 360-degree initiatives and campaigns have the primary goal of uplifting local black talent and displaying black excellence around the world, it also has a secondary function, which is to reshape the narrative around the continent on a global scale.

“BET content celebrates and showcases both local and international black culture and African talent. We are proudly committed to local content that entertains and makes a difference in our viewers’ lives,” says Monde Twala, Vice President for Youth, Music and BET

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