Shemaroo eyes Rs 100 cr in three years from new media

Gokul Krishnamurthy Mumbai | Updated on March 24, 2011

We see a huge opportunity in our content being consumed on new media: Gada, Director, Shemaroo

Shemaroo Entertainment's stall at FICCI Frames is abuzz. Showing throughout the day on the large-screen TVs are 15-minute edits of blockbusters from the company's library. The company is bullish on such innovative ‘snack' content options from its 1,500-plus digital title library being consumed on digital media.

The company has a play in the production, distribution and home video businesses. It went through a tough phase — in tune with the industry as Mr Hiren Gada, Director, Shemaroo reminds us — in 2009 and 2010. Revenues dipped to Rs 104 crore from Rs 146 crore in FY 2008. Things are back on track now, and Shemaroo is looking to close the year ending March 2011 with a topline of over Rs 150 crore. Going forward, it is eyeing revenues of at least Rs 100 crore in the next three years from new media initiatives.

Speaking to Business Line, Mr Gada said, “The rights that we own include perpetual rights to 600 titles, including over 250 Hindi movies. The huge library allows us to leverage content across media. Now that infrastructure is being built for new media, and 3G is being rolled out, we see a huge opportunity in our content being consumed on new media. We are also creating customised content for new media.”

Shemaroo has perpetual rights to several hit movies, including Amitabh Bachchan titles such as Amar Akbar Antony, Namak Halal and Khuda Gawah. On the production side, it recently co-produced the Vidya Balan-starrer Ishqiya. Its direct foray into film making was with Omkara. Its revenue from television rights has grown at a CAGR of 14 per cent in the last four to five years and is growing, according to Mr Gada. New media is going to be an additional thrust area going forward.

“We are confident about new media because of the content we have, and because of the understanding of the content — and of what content in what format gets consumed through what media. We are partnering several 3G roll-outs at a deep level, and have an ongoing relationship with cellular service providers, which helps us do that. Also, we are creating a massive back-end for digital assets,” added Mr Gada.

A team of 60 people is working on the back-end for creation of new media content, and the team size will touch 100 ‘pretty soon'. Be it Bachchan's Don or Chupke Chupke, or the more recent Golmaal, the Shemaroo team is busy creating shorter versions and edits of content from its library's titles to suit Web and mobile access.

The company is rooted in its belief that India is not homogenous. Regional content, therefore, is another thrust area to drive new media content adoption through the Web.

“Regions also become markets in their own right, given India's diversity. Music content being adopted through mobile has shown that there is room for video, and has also shown that regional content is critical. With BWA, IPTV and 3G, we see new media as a very important part of our ecosystem,” surmised Mr Gada.

Published on March 24, 2011

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