Blacktag Is Redefining Content Consumpton
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Blacktag offers high-quality, one-of-a-kind content that serves the dynamic interests of its audience. After meeting through mutual friends in 2019, founders Akin Adebowale and Ousman Sahko Sow launched the global-targeted app to celebrate the creativity of creators by monetizing their art and connecting them with brands from around the world.
The team behind Blacktag, from left: Front row: Arie Esiri, development executive; Ousman Sahko, co-founder and president; Akin Adebowale, co-founder and CEO; Jasmine Cogdell, VP of marketing. Back row: Michel-Le Davis, director of talent; Peter Jallah, account manager; Chenda Bunkasem, VP of product; Melissa Tropnas, director of content; Jamier Boatman- Harrell, associate creative director; Kya Gibson, creator programming lead; Chike Achebe, general counsel; Ashley Champ, chief of staff. (Not pictured: Jayde Stuckey, senior social strategist; Kiara Holley, art director; Taj Francois, senior editor.) PHOTO BY TYRA MITCHELL
The platform’s content includes Bag Talk, a series hosted by TikTok comedian Boman Martinez-Reid (who boasts 1.5 million followers) that promotes financial literacy. Supersonic, a live performance series, showcases musicians performing among graphic visuals. Brooklyn-based writer and pop culture critic Myles E. Johnson and astrologist Matthew Dunigan co-host What’s Your Sign?, which provides astrological and tarot readings for public figures like fashion designer Brandon Blackwood.
“We’re constantly seeking new creative works to license each quarter as well as supporting creators with co-production efforts toward their own creative projects,” the founders tell EDITION. “Our goal is to have 24 hours of programming within the platform, so the more we grow the more we can elevate and amplify Black creativity across the globe.”
Blacktag’s CEO Akin Adebowale and president and chief content officer Ousman Sahko Sow use their mutual business mindset to help bolster the spotlight of creators worldwide. PHOTO BY GREGORY HERMANN
The platform is available in the iOS and Android stores and plans to expand to applications like Roku, Amazon Fire TV Stick and Apple TV.
Blacktag is funded by a $3.75 million investment from Creative Artists Agency (CAA) and New Enterprise Associates (NEA) to not only provide partnerships with artists like Issa Rae and Common but also pay trendsetters for their artistry.
“[Adebowale and Sow’s] vision will make a tremendous impact by creating opportunities for Black artists and creators to monetize their work while providing artistic freedom,” says Michael Blank, the head of consumer investments at CAA.
Adebowale, a creative director, and Sow, a commercial film director, combined their respective expertise in content marketing and advertising media to further their vision.
PHOTO BY GREGORY HERMANN
“We’re a global solution to what we see as a problem within entertainment and marketing. Currently, there is no specific modern platform that is successfully trying to celebrate creators and bring brands and audiences together specifically around this notion of Black alternative content,” says Sow.
Blacktag incentivizes creators to design content that speaks to an unfiltered audience base. “Our content is a reflection of the vast perspectives and voices that exist within the Black community,” the founders explain. “The goal for Blacktag is to create a space where Black creators can discuss and create content that moves our community forward.”