The cancellation of Afro Nation’s debut in Nigeria which boasts the title of the world’s largest Afrobeat festival, had the potential to inject over N1 billion into the local economy this December.
Festivals and music concerts have long been recognised as potent drivers of economic growth, uniting audiences from diverse regions.
The projected turnout for the event was considerable, with an average ticket cost of approximately N23,000.
VIP access tickets were priced at N230,000.
General access tickets stood at N30,000.
A cumulative estimate of the revenue generated from regular ticket sales alone would exceed N1.25 billion when multiplied by the venue’s seat capacity.
The event was set to take place at Tafawa Balewa Square, with a capacity of 55,000. Given the impressive artist lineup, including Burna Boy, Flavour, Seyi Vibez, Black Sherif, and J Hus, an audience of at least 60,000 or more was anticipated.
Moreover, the festival’s timing during the festive season would have stimulated transportation, logistics, and various local businesses, contributing to economic growth.
Apart from music, Afro Nation is renowned for its influence on fashion, food, and art, representing a vibrant cultural melting pot. Attendees were poised to experience the best of Africa and beyond.
What you should know
Afro Nation first held its concert in Ghana (the first country in Africa to host the international festival) around 2019 after signing a 5-year partnership deal with the country’s government.
In its debut year in 2019, approximately 90% of its attendees came from international destinations.
During the four-day festival, a workforce of 150 labourers was daily employed to manage a variety of tasks. This brought a total of 600 workers deployed to manage the event.
Afro Nation once more presented lucrative business opportunities for local real estate firms, hosting festival executives and artists at considerable costs, amounting to thousands of dollars.
However, in 2022 the international festival was halted abruptly due to safety concerns.
On October 31, 2023, Afro Nation announced the regrettable cancellation of its Detty December concert in Lagos, originally scheduled for December 19-20, 2023.
The decision was based on their commitment to upholding high standards and delivering an event of the quality Nigeria deserves.
Afro Nation pledged to refund all purchased tickets, including booking fees, and assured ticketholders that they would receive detailed information about the refund process via email.
Although the festival did not divulge the specific reasons behind the cancellation, speculation has arisen concerning sponsorship challenges or logistical issues.
In a chat with Nairametrics, a concert organizer who simply preferred to go by the name, Opara explained,
‘I know ticketing doesn’t do much. It is usually brand sponsorship and I do not think Afronation had so many of that. Also, shows are very expensive to pull off these days,” Opara stated while speaking on the current reality for most show organisers in the entertainment industry.
This development is a significant setback for the Nigerian entertainment industry and a source of disappointment for eager fans.
Afro Nation has not disclosed any plans for rescheduling the Detty December concert at a later date, leaving prospects uncertain.Follow us on social media