East-Africa News

5G Rollout in Kenya Escalates as Airtel Upgrades 600 Sites
Airtel Kenya has upgraded over 600 sites in Nairobi, Mombasa and Malindi to ensure that they are 5G ready – this comes shortly after rival telco, Safaricom, launched the first 5G commercial services in East Africa. “These 600 sites are now 5G-ready. We don’t have to make any further modifications to the network. We will […] www.itnewsafrica.com | 4/6/21 10:30 AM
Accel-backed mobile money platform NALA to start offering remittance services to East Africa
According to a McKinsey report, the total number of mobile money services worldwide was 282 in 2017, with more than half of those operating in sub-Saharan Africa.  In 2020, these numbers increased significantly, but the ratio remained similar.  In 96 countries, there are 310 live mobile money services, according to a GSMA report. Out of […] techcrunch.com | 3/31/21 10:00 AM
Nokia Joins Forces with Safaricom to Launch the First Commercial 5G Network in East Africa
Nokia and Safaricom have joined forces to launch the first 5G commercial services in East Africa. According to the companies, Nokia’s 5G Single Radio Access Network (SRAN) technology and 5G FastMile gateways will enable ultra-fast Fixed Wireless Access (FWA) services to Safaricom’s subscribers across Kisumu and the Western Province of Kenya. 5G technology is expected to […] www.itnewsafrica.com | 3/29/21 7:30 AM
Sundance Institute CEO Keri Putnam to Step Down

Keri Putnam, CEO of the Sundance Institute, will step down from her role later this year after more than 10 years with the arts non-profit.

Putnam this week informed staff and the Board of Trustees of her decision. She will remain in the role through the end of the fiscal year. Board of Trustees chair Pat Mitchell and vice-chair Ebs Burnough will co-chair a search committee to find Putnam’s replacement.

Under Putnam’s leadership, Sundance hosted its first ever virtual festival earlier this year, and she also led the non-profit in growth as well as the launch of new programs to support artists seeking production, financing and distribution, including Sundance Catalyst, which raised $40 million in equity and grant investment over the past eight years for a wide variety of independent projects.

Also Read: Virtual Sundance Boasts 600,000 Audience Views - Nearly 3 Times More Than 2020

“After an incredibly rewarding decade, and following the success of our first-ever online Festival, I have decided it’s the right time for me to step down as CEO of Sundance Institute. Leading Sundance through this volatile era in media together with such an impassioned team has been one of my greatest joys,” Putnam said in a statement.

She continued: “The remarkable growth of our community of artists, audiences and partners over the last ten years is a testament to the vitality and urgency of the independent storytelling Sundance supports. The Institute stands today as an innovative and resilient organization at the intersection of arts and media, supporting more artists and reaching a bigger audience than ever before. I look forward to exploring new challenges and opportunities in my next chapter, and can’t wait to see the extraordinary Sundance team break new ground in the years ahead while maintaining their renegade, independent spirit.”

Putnam and her team have made a commitment to expanding opportunities for underrepresented voices and establishing programs for artists of color and those with disabilities. This year’s festival hit gender parity among its film slate, and Sundance Institute also launched a fellowship to diversify film critics who cover the film festival.

Also Read: Sundance Launches Asia Edition of Film Festival in Jakarta, Indonesia

In 2012, Putnam partnered with Dr. Stacy Smith and Women in Film and commissioned research on the barriers facing female-identifying artists that looked at the Institute’s extensive applicant and acceptance data. The findings of the study led to the launch of the Women at Sundance program, which helped the festival reach its gender parity goals and became the basis for ReFrame, an industry-wide advocacy group for women in media that was co-founded by Putnam.

Putnam also oversaw the expansion of Sundance Institute’s global footprint, bringing Sundance to artists and audiences beyond Utah with festivals in London and Hong Kong and Lab programs not only in cities across the U.S. but in Mexico, East Africa, the Middle East and beyond. In 2018, the Institute launched Sundance Co//ab, a digital platform offering courses, classes, and community events. By 2020, the platform was home to one million users from over 150 countries.

This year’s Sundance was also the most attended in the festival’s history, reaching people in all 50 states and 120 countries and over 600,000 audience views.

“As a fierce supporter of independent creators, Keri has been instrumental in seeing the Institute through a decade of transformation, while keeping a laser-focus on Sundance’s mission of preserving, discovering, incubating and encouraging independent artistry in all forms,” founder and president of Sundance Institute Robert Redford said in a statement. “We cannot overstate her impact, and we thank Keri for her invaluable service in support of independent artists.”

“Under Keri’s leadership, Sundance forged new partnerships across the industry and beyond,” board chair Pat Mitchell said in a statement. “She helped build a diverse, world-class team, and invested in leadership at all levels, from staff to the Board.  As a result, the Institute is stronger than ever, and poised to leverage this exciting moment to continue its invaluable work on behalf of independent artists in the US and around the world. We are grateful that Keri will be staying on in her role through the end of our fiscal year.”

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www.thewrap.com | 3/25/21 6:30 PM
Nutanix and CLC Africa Partner to Provide Digital Skills Across East Africa
Nutanix and Computer Learning Centre (CLC AFRICA) have joined forces to provide access to technical and sales skills across Kenya, Tanzania, Uganda, Ethiopia and Rwanda. The partnership is expected to help provide access to valuable certified digital training to a region where demand for hyper-converged and cloud solutions is growing. “As legacy environments come to […] www.itnewsafrica.com | 3/24/21 12:18 PM
‘Gordon Hemingway & The Realm of Cthulhu’ Coming to Netflix From Director Stefon Bristol and Producer Spike Lee

Spike Lee is sticking with Netflix after Da 5 Bloods. The filmmaker will produce Gordon Hemingway & The Realm of Cthulhu, a Netflix movie directed by Stefon Bristol. The flick follows a “roguish Black American gunslinger” dealing with an ancient evil in East Africa in 1928, and based on that title, one has to assume H.P. Lovecraft’s Cthulhu Mythos plays […]

The post ‘Gordon Hemingway & The Realm of Cthulhu’ Coming to Netflix From Director Stefon Bristol and Producer Spike Lee appeared first on /Film.

www.slashfilm.com | 2/23/21 11:00 PM
Spike Lee to Produce ‘Gordon Hemingway & the Realm of Cthulu’ From Stefon Bristol

Spike Lee will produce the next film from director Stefon Bristol that’s set up at Netflix, a period fantasy called “Gordon Hemingway & the Realm of Cthulu.”

Bristol’s directorial debut was Netflix’s “See You Yesterday” from 2019, a time travel adventure movie that premiered at Tribeca and won an Independent Spirit Award for Best First Screenplay.

Bristol’s new feature comes from an original screenplay by Hank Woon, with revisions by both Woon and Fredrica Bailey. The film is set in East Africa in 1928 and follows the roguish Black American gunslinger Gordon Hemingway, who teams up with the elite warrior Princess Zenebé of Ethiopia to rescue their kidnapped regent from an ancient evil.

Also Read: Spike Lee to Direct Musical About Invention of Viagra for eOne

“Gordon Hemingway & the Realm of Cthulu” will be produced by Spike Lee, Lloyd Levin and Beatriz Levin. Lloyd Levin and Beatriz Levin initially optioned the spec screenplay from Woon and brought the film to Bristol and Lee.

“Gordon Hemingway” will also have visual effects from the team at Goodbye Kansas. The co-producers on the film are Oliver Oftedal and Tom Olsson for Goodbye Kansas’ production arm Infinite Entertainment.

Bristol’s first film, “See You Yesterday,” was watched by 18 million households in its first four weeks on Netflix. Lee last directed “Da 5 Bloods,” which was nominated for three SAG Awards, and he’s next set to direct a musical about the invention of Viagra for eOne.

Stefon Bristol is represented by UTA and Ellipsis Entertainment Group. Bailey is represented by UTA and Lighthouse Management. Woon is represented by APA.

Related stories from TheWrap:

'TheWrap-Up' Podcast: Spike Lee and Delroy Lindo From 'Da 5 Bloods'

Every Black Director Nominated for an Oscar, From John Singleton to Spike Lee (Photos)

Spike Lee's 'Da 5 Bloods' Wins Best Film and Director From National Board of Review

www.thewrap.com | 2/23/21 9:00 PM
Huawei Mobile Services Expands Ad Exchange Across Africa
Huawei Mobile Services (HMS) is set to expand its advertising business across the MEA (Middle East, Africa, and Pakistan) region. Huawei Ads is a supply-side and demand-side, real-time advertising marketplace where media companies transact ad impressions with accountability. These ads reach users of Huawei devices, third-party apps, and Huawei apps such as AppGallery, Browser, Assistant, Music, […] www.itnewsafrica.com | 2/22/21 7:30 AM