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TracePlay to launch in Congo with Africell

TracePlayModern Times Group (MTG)-owned music and urban lifestyle broadcaster Trace has struck an agreement to launch its subscription video-on-demand service TracePlay in the Democratic Republic of Congo with local mobile player Africell.

Under the deal between the pair, Africell will launch TracePlay by the end of this year, targeting its 3G mobile subscribers and data users.

TracePlay provides 10 live TV channels, 30 radio services and about 2,000 series episodes, films, documentaries and other content.

In addition to the launch of Trace Play in the country, the deal will also see Trace take control of Africa Media-owned FM radio station AfriRadio, by November.

According to Trace, it will maintain the musical format of the station, which will be rebranded Trace FM, and continue to broadcast it in Kinshasha, Lubumbashi and Matadi. The service, which will be dedicated to Congolese and international urban music, reached about 20 million people across the country, according to the company.

“We are proud to have been chosen by Africell to continue developing their FM radio and to offer to their 3G subscribers the TracePlay platform. This partnership is exemplary of the convergence between a media group and a mobile operator, both of which have put at the center of their priorities a range of services close to the expectations of Congolese people and especially Congolese youth, who constitute more than 60% of the population,” said Olivier Laouchez, CEO, co-founder and chairman of Trace.

“This strategic alliance with Trace demonstrates that Africell is the most dynamic mobile operator and the closest to the Congolese who are all passionate about music and TV programs. With Trace, Africell teamed up with the leading and favorite music brand of the Congolese. In DRC, our alliance with Trace will energize the mobile industry as well as the radio and music industries and will benefit the Congolese people,” said Omar Khodr, director-general of Africell DRG.