Ghanaian photo app Suba has raised a funding round from legendary Ghanaian musician Reggie Rockstone, which it hopes can assist it in becoming the “Instagram of Africa”.
Suba, a location-based iOS and Android app that launched in Ghana last September, allows everyone at social gatherings to see and share photos in one central photostream, going beyond the constraints of a friends list on other social platforms and allowing event attendees to see, save, and share everyone’s photos.
The startup was previously funded by the Meltwater Entrepreneurial School of Technology (MEST) incubator in Ghana, but has now raised a round from Rockstone, founder of the “hiplife” music genre and an entertainment entrepreneur.
Though the amount is undisclosed, Suba said Rockstone will utilise his extensive fan base, social media following and industry network as a platform to generate exposure for the startup.
“With Reggie’s influence in the entertainment industry here in Ghana and also Africa, we are poised to gain a lot of traction both locally and internationally,” Suba co-founder Nelson Klutse told Disrupt Africa.
“We are huge fans of Reggie and admire how he has managed to build and maintain his brand for over 20 years, which is very rare for an artist. We believe having Reggie as a partner and leveraging the power of his stardom and the entertainment industry will catapult Suba to the next level.”
Klutse said the money will be used to build the team and make improvements to the app, as well as for marketing efforts.
“Africa is now being considered the “mobile continent” with internet use on mobile phones being predicted to increase double the rate of growth in the rest of the worldm” said Rockstone.
“This is a huge opportunity for Suba and yes we’re shooting for the global market but a major focus for us will be to become the Instagram of Africa that is locally owned, which will definitely serve as inspiration to a generation of young people and aspiring entrepreneurs,” said Rockstone.
Suba has been used by event organisers around the world to manage photo sharing including the Oxford University Africa Innovate Conference (UK), Meltwater Corporate Kickoff (Miami, US), Mobile West Africa (Nigeria), and Chale Wote Street Arts Festival (Ghana).
Klutse told Disrupt Africa the startup has plans to expand to Nigeria next year, but its immediate focus is on obtaining a strong foothold in Ghana, something it now feels more confident of doing after Rockstone’s funding.
“This represents a remarkable feat for Suba. Reggie himself is an avid user of social media and his investment in Suba is a big statement to how far we’ve come as a company and importantly what the future holds for us. With this association we’re poll position to be the official photo app for all explosive music concerts in Ghana, Nigeria and the rest of Africa,” he said.