Aliaune Badara Thiam better known as Akon has announced that he has purchased 50 percent of African music download service, Musik Bi, making him the largest shareholder of the company which is grappling to gain its foothold after its launch about a year and six months ago.
Describing Musik Bi as “the platform of the future”, Akon made the announcement in the capital of Dakar, as he takes charge of the music service platform with a mission to promote African artists, pay them properly, and fight internet piracy.
“It’s not just a platform for Senegal but for Africa,” he added, refusing to be drawn on what he had paid for the transaction.
The platform also hopes to broaden into a music festival, television channel and a streaming service, Akon said.
Listing the challenges faced by MusiK Bi since its launch, CEO Moustapha Diop, whose company Solid pioneered the project, said ongoing disputes with phone companies over their cut of takings had hindered the reach of the music service.
“We have the ambition of developing across Africa and being ‘the’ musical distribution platform in Africa,” Diop told journalists.
“The profit made by the operators is problematic because it goes against the interests of the artists and the platform in general. We will keep pushing to get a reasonable deal,” he added.