The Indian Media and Entertainment (M&E) sector grew at 13.4 per cent, more than the nominal GDP of 10 per cent, to reach Rs 1.67 trillion ($23.9 billion) in 2018 as against 2017, according a report. It is expected to cross ₹2.35 trillion ($33.6 billion) by 2021, growing at an annual rate of 11.6%.

In a report by EY-FICCI called ‘A billion screens of opportunity’ it been stated that, while television retained its position as the largest segment, the growth is expected to come from digital in 2019 overtaking the film entertainment sector.

Ashish Pherwani, Partner and Media & Entertainment Leader, EY India, said, “The growth of digital infrastructure is further enabling Indians to fulfil the need for personal content consumption, across languages and genre. There is a large shift in consumer behaviour from mass produced content to specific content defined to audience segments. The sector has an opportunity to serve a billion screens in India and globally.”

The report, released at 20th edition of FICCI Frames, said the sector continues to grow at a rate faster than the GDP and this reflects the fact that the disposal incomes are increasing.

India has the second highest number of internet users after China with over 570 million internet subscribers growing at 13% annually.

The report estimates that approximately 2.5 million consumers in India are only digital and do not use the traditional media. The customer base is expected to grow to 5 million by 2021. Traditional media companies spent 2018 building their customer data through second-screen interactive propositions, polls, house-to-house surveys,and integration of third-party data .

Digital consumption will grow, and monetization avenues will see great innovation to cater to the new Indian customer segments, the report added.

Telco bundling will drive consumption for a majority of Indian OTT audience.

Advertising growth outpaced subscription growth and is expected to comprise 52% of the total pie by 2021, as per the report.

Uday Shankar, Vice President, FICCI and Chair, FICCI Media and Entertainment Division, said, “The sector’s incumbents need to innovate, transform and increase their relevance to mass and individual consumers.”