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“We’re exploring other regions for opportunities”: Why Quartz expanded into Africa

Global business news and insights publisher, Quartz, has launched a new membership program focusing solely on tech and innovation in Africa.

Expanding on one of its successful flagship products, the Quartz Africa Weekly, the new membership will grant access to exclusive Quartz Africa content and the newly created Quartz Africa Member Brief, a members-only newsletter that provides a deep dive into the startups, innovators, and sectors that are driving Africa’s technological boom. 

Quartz Africa is one of the publisher’s most successful sub-brands with 90,000+ weekly readers. To convert more into paying subscribers, Quartz has introduced a more affordable membership tier ($60 annually, half the price of the normal $10 monthly subscription). The move follows internal surveys which indicated that the majority of readers wanted an Africa-only product and were willing to pay for it. 

Quartz Editor-in-Chief, Katherine Bell, told WNIP, “We launched Quartz Africa in 2015, because we saw that there was so much experimentation, innovation, and problem-solving happening in Africa that wasn’t being covered in global business media. We saw an opportunity to fill a need for in-depth reporting on startups and other companies doing unique things in their sectors. 

“We’ve built a loyal and very engaged audience of entrepreneurs, investors, and other professionals with interests in Africa on the continent, in the diaspora, and around the world. The increasing readership we’ve seen on our Africa coverage over time, in particular on stories about emerging technologies and industries, led to this membership and product launch.”

We’ve also seen high engagement with the weekly company profile email we send to Quartz global members, and so we’ve incorporated company profiles into the new Quartz Africa membership.

Quartz Editor-in-Chief, Katherine Bell

Quartz Africa editorial coverage

Speaking to WNIP, Quartz Africa Editor Ciku Kimeria adds that the editorial team will be spread across the continent in order to provide in-depth coverage, “We have a full-time staff of four. An editor based between Nairobi, Kenya and Dakar, Senegal. Two tech/general reporters based in Lagos, Nigeria and Nairobi. And, a climate change reporter based in Cairo, Egypt.”

Quartz Africa Editor, Ciku Kimeria

“In addition to this, we work with a team of approximately 20 freelancers spread out across Addis, Abidjan, Harare, Kampala, Dar es Salaam, Johannesburg, and Douala to name a few locations.

“Similar to other Quartz projects, any other global staff member can also work on the Brief, if there is a particular African startup in their beat that they would love to cover.”

Africa is a rich continent filled with people and companies doing incredible work that are impacting industries on a national and global level. But, you don’t always see it being covered in the news. We have built Quartz Africa to be a leading resource on innovation, technology, business, and startups on the continent. We’re excited to begin this new chapter of storytelling within Quartz.

Quartz Africa Editor, Ciku Kimeria

Bell adds, “Quartz Africa is our second geographically based membership, after Quartz Japan, which is published in both English and Japanese and has 4,400 members. With half our reporters already living outside the U.S., being a truly global newsroom is crucial to our mission to make business—and capitalism itself—better.”

We’re exploring other regions for opportunities to build new email-based memberships, both global news translated and curated for a specific regional audience, like Quartz Japan, and focused on emerging industries in a particular region, like Quartz Africa.

Quartz Editor-in-Chief, Katherine Bell