Buying Drama: New Buyers on the Hunt, While Established Ones Expand

The recent ATF Plugged-In Series 2022 looking at the genre of drama, saw a gathering of noteworthy buyers, from newcomers like the Sarawak Media Group (SMG), and VROTT from India to industry veteran Kanal7 of Turkey.

The session allowed audiences to get to know more of SMG, having launched in 2018. Their Senior Content Development & Acquisition Executive, Ryan Lee, disclosed that the platform is keen to acquire docs, travel, food, comedy, and costume dramas, having already acquired content that mirrors some of Netflix’s top dramas, alluding to the quality of content it is committed to. As well, Ryan has also shopped for products from Turkey, Thailand, Japan, and Singapore’s Mediacorp. He noted that currently, based on demand and audience profile, animation will not be a focus.

Victoria de Kerdrel, APAC Consultant at K7 Media (right) brought out some of the latest intelligence from drama buyers: (L—R) Ryan Lee, Senior Content Development & Acquisition Executive at Sarawak Media Group (SMG); Krishi Dutt, Director of VROTT; and Yeşim Sezdirmez, Deputy General Manager of Kanal7

Further insights followed, as Krishi Dutt, Director of VROTT also divulged information on his expanding platform, as well as content that is currently holding strong in India. Setting the scene, Krishi recapped that demand is immense for crime, thriller, and psychological horror content, while family drama is a staple across the board.

The parent company, VR Films & Studios Ltd, which is listed on the Bombay Stock Exchange, launched VROTT in January 2022, branding the new platform as that which makes the World speak its local language. VROTT premiered exclusive global content dubbed in local languages like Hindi, Tamil, and Telugu. This strategy is with a mission etched in the race to capture the next 100 million SVOD subscribers.

Krishi noted that the coming months will be exciting ones, especially after disclosing that VROTT has been shopping around for titles from Europe, Turkey, UK, Korean and more.

Turning to Turkey, Yeşim Sezdirmez, Deputy General Manager of Kanal7 unveiled that the platform, having a strong female-oriented tilt, is keen to hunt and gather more dramas from the East – with strong family values by sellers from Korea, China, India, and Thailand – and more feature films from the West. The intention is to become more versatile, to enrich their offering.

According to Yeşim, content that continue to work in Turkey include drama – crime dramas dominate daytime slots, while psychological dramas are trending big now. As well, period dramas reflecting Turkish history remains a staple. This, in addition to being open to co-productions.


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