The Giant Grows

06 Jul 2018

The Giant Grows

India’s TV industry keeps the faith

By Lulu SV Mendoza

The Indian television industry is again reiterated as being the most consistently performing sector of the Indian M&E Industry. According to Chaitanya Chinchlikar, Vice President of Whistling Woods International, it is presently over 4 times the size of the Indian Film industry and is the largest employer in the M&E space.

That India’s TV pipeline has almost 1,500 MSOs, 60,000+ LCOs, 6 DTH operators, 2 IPTV Operators and over 850 channels, is evidence alone.

However, on the value headroom front, the average subscription rate for Cable TV / DTH in India is US$3—4 per TV per month, compared to $60—100 in US / UK / Europe, per TV per month.

Yet, the potential feeds the faith of a ginormous future. It’s been a great ride so far for folks like GoQuest Media Ventures, touted to be the largest independent distributor of Indian content. Their vision is to eventually be the largest market place for worldwide content. No one as yet has discounted this vision, as India sits closer to the dream than most territories.

So far, GoQuest Media Ventures’ most lucrative buys have been a selection of Indian and various foreign language dramas for the African market, telenovelas and Indian dramas, non- scripted shows like My Dance Crew for worldwide distribution, curating the best content into these market, we are confident that our portfolio of programming will be a staple for worldwide audiences.

With over 75% of viewership of GEC / Movies, Indians still prefer fiction / escapism on TV, says Chinchlikar, noting that the ones that don’t, are not watching TV anymore and have switched to OTT.

GoQuest’s future buys will see drama continuing to dominate. “Taste and favourites will not change drastically, but will continue to evolve mainly because now content is available for everyone; for example, Netflix’s original series, Stranger Things.

“Over the coming months we hope to buy a selection of scripted dramas from Europe and non-fiction content from Latin America and Southeast Asia,” said GoQuest’s Head Sales & Acquisition, Jimmy George.

Jimmy George
Head Sales & Acquisition
GoQuest Media Ventures

As a game changer, Jimmy noted that we may see non-fiction and scripted content coming out from new markets rather than traditional markets.

“For example, if until now the Netherlands was a market for new content, than we may see Belgium doing more in this space. Interactive content on Digital Platform is also catching on,” Jimmy noted.

Originals, exclusives and big data for bespoke viewing, Jimmy is confident that this will continue, as we are now seeing formats being drafted on findings and big data.

“Originals and exclusives have increased manifold on OTT, as these high-end productions help the platforms to attract new subscribers. Big data will play a very big role as the digital medium keeps exploding and providing the minutest detail/information of audience behavior and watching patterns,” Jimmy continued.

The remaining bits of 2018 has got Jimmy excited with the anticipation of the entrance of large OTT players into the non-fiction space, including someone like YouTube undertaking original non-fiction.

“We are also excited about launching GoQuest Digital – our digital content production arm in India,” explained Jimmy. “This initiative will work directly with different brands and create brand integrated stories based on various non-scripted formats. The produced content will be distributed via a variety of OTT and consumer media platforms,” Jimmy enlightened.

The company is also partnering in the OTT platform, with Lattu Kids, which aims to be the largest edutainment platform for kids aged 2—8 years old, being one of the more significant handshake. Even a beta app was launched a few months ago, with the full version being available by the end of May. While only available in India at the moment, Lattu Kids is currently accessible on iOS, Android, Ola Play, and Amazon Firestick, with more such platform partnerships in the pipeline this year.

Kids’ content and animation in particular has been all the rage. For GoQuest, such is a sure bet. As it is, broadcasters are willing to pay over double for good quality Indian animated content as compared to daily soaps / Hindi general entertainment content, even though this segment gets only 5.6% of the viewership, as compared to 28.4% for Hindi GECs, says Whistling Woods’ Chinchlikar.

Also the fact that this segment continues to be under-indexed doesn’t bother broadcasters as this content has long-tail revenue. It offers repeat viewing value, multi-language dubbing value and merchandising value.

For more on India’s kids’ animation, visit the ATF Kids’ Summit 2018 in Hyderabad!

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