YeraTube: the social media platform made in Africa
YeraTube is the first video streaming platform that pays both content creators and users. ITC’s support allowed the Malian start-up who developed the application, to join the Amazon Web Services programme and benefit from $10,000 in credits for its unique positioning.
With YeraTube, Africa has its own social media. Every day, up to 2,000 users connect to the application to share and comment on streaming videos. Launched in 2021 by a Bamako-based start-up, it is a showcase for African creators and artists who can monetize their original content across the continent, build an audience and earn revenue.
What’s more, YeraTube pays the platform’s users. Each time a user watches a video, he or she accumulates points that can be converted into mobile money or connection credit. YeraTube's advertising revenues are thus shared by everyone, whether you are a popular influencer, an amateur creator or simply a user of the application.
Registration is free and does not require a bank account. A simple telephone number is all that is needed to register.
“Unlike YouTube, whose monetization functions are not available in Africa, YeraTube is accessible to everyone,” says Mohamed Malet, co-founder of the Malian social media.
“NTF V gave us exactly what we needed.”
YeraTube's unique positioning has contributed to its fast growth and popularity. However, with growth, operating costs get higher.
“Each new account opening requires authentication by text message. This represents a significant cost for our start-up, as does hosting a growing amount of content on our servers,” explains Mohamed Malet.
While YeraTube was experiencing its first growth crisis, the start-up received support from the International Trade Centre’s Trust Fund (NTF V) Fast Track Tech project.
“The support came at the right time! NTF V enabled us to participate in Amazon Web Services (AWS) , which granted us $10,000 in credits for a period of two years. This allowed us to solve our hosting and text messaging needs,” explains Mohamed Malet.
Heading towards fund-raising
YeraTube also used the AWS credits to finance a large and successful communication campaign. In a few months only, the global audience had increased tenfold, from 15,000 to 150,000 users. The users now benefit from much faster bandwidth and more advanced features such as voice notes, automatic moderation by AI, live broadcasting and radio streaming.
Moreover, the NTF V project allowed YeraTube to benefit from multiple training sessions.
“We have increased our skills on diverse subjects, from design thinking to financial management. We improved our internal organization and are now preparing our first fundraising round.”
Before the end of 2023, YeraTube hopes to raise $300,000 to strengthen its technical teams, continue the development of the application and enhance its communication strategy.
The Netherlands Trust Fund V (NTF) program (July 2021 – June 2025) is based on a partnership between the Netherlands Ministry of Foreign Affairs and the International Trade Centre. NTF V supports SMEs in the digital technology and agribusiness sectors in Benin, Côte d'Ivoire, Ethiopia, Ghana, Mali, Senegal and Uganda. Its ambition is to contribute to an inclusive and sustainable transformation of agri-food systems partly through digital solutions, to improve the international competitiveness of local tech start-ups and to support the implementation of the export strategy of IT&BPO companies.