‘Streaming will get to 100-200 million subscribers, however the journey is just not as rose-tinted.’


IMAGE: Pratik Gandhi in Scam 1992.

Sameer Nair is the person liable for bringing Kaun Banega Crorepati and the saas-bahu serials to Indian tv screens.

As chief govt officer of Aditya Birla Group’s Applause Entertainment, he’s now bringing among the most profitable reveals — Criminal Justice (BBC Studios India), Scam 1992 (Studio Next) — on-line.

The Rs 246 crore (Rs 2.46 billion) Applause has had an unbelievable 5 years, hitting each scale and selection in a tricky enterprise. In dialog with Vanita Kohli-Khandekar/Business Standard, Nair speaks in regards to the journey.


What have the 5 years been like?

The plan was that the streaming enterprise was going to develop due to connectivity, gadgets, and the cash being put behind it.

Our assumption was that even when the enterprise grows, there’s content material to drive it as a result of broadcasters have been pushed by saas-bahu reveals for the previous few years.

We have by no means had our HBO Showtime moments, by no means created The Sopranos and The Wire type of reveals.

That is how Netflix and HBO had been constructed.

India will want to create that content material.

We had this chance of investing that cash and licensing content material.

Five years on, numerous these assumptions have performed out.

The huge milestone was the primary take care of Hotstar (Criminal Justice Season 1, adopted by Hostages), City of Dreams (Kukunoor Movies), and The Office Season 1 (BBC Studios India).

Then we did reveals with MX Player, Amazon Prime Video, and Netflix.

The subsequent milestone was with SonyLIV.

We did 4 reveals with it, together with the award-winning Scam 1992.

We have launched 40 reveals to date. There are 15 in-production and we’ve got produced eight motion pictures.

25sameer nair

Photograph: Kind courtesy Sumit Patel/wikimedia commons

What is Applause’s position?

We are the studio, the initiator.

We would possibly determine to adapt a global present, a e book, or anyone has pitched an thought.

On this foundation, we’d green-light growth, writing, casting, getting a director, and proceed with manufacturing. The remaining present (with all episodes) is post-produced and edited.

We present the over-the-top platforms a screener and two episodes. If they prefer it, we licence it to them.

Content manufacturing in India often works on fee foundation. How does possession of mental property change something?

The undeniable fact that we put our capital, took the danger means we had been ready to make a great high quality product the best way we needed to. The platform is shopping for off the shelf.

It would not have to undergo the 18-month journey of writing, casting, and placing all of it collectively.

From a long-term possession perspective, we get to do the following seasons.

When we’re licensing, we’re not restricted by the ten/15 per cent margin.

We will value it primarily based on what the market can settle for — not irregular revenue/loss.

Our philosophy is construct a model, a list of IP, franchisable merchandise and films, and get wealthy slowly.

My actual pleasure comes from making an honest revenue after which having a number of seasons of the present that work for the platform.

Our enterprise is repeat orders.

My purchasers are the identical eight to 10 platforms.

The subsequent few years?

The first 5 years had been the honeymoon interval.

Streaming will get to 100-200 million subscribers, however the journey is just not as rose-tinted.

If streaming has to be the identical dimension as TV, it has to be disciplined.

Our plan is to make investments and reinvest about Rs 3,000 crore (Rs 3 billion) in content material.

Any epiphanies?

The unique assumption was that content material cannot get scale as a result of it’s a artistic enterprise. We set out to attempt to create scale by way of a hub-and-spoke mannequin like a studio.

What are you able to convey from TV to streaming?

Film-making was at all times a ardour mission. It would not have a launch date.

In TV, nothing can shift.

We have introduced numerous that self-discipline in how we finances, calendarise, and plan. The making of a 10-episode collection could be very completely different from making 250 each day soaps.

The different advantage of TV was many occasions if a present didn’t decide up within the first month, we ploughed on regardless and it picked up.

In streaming, we launch a present and really shortly it’s, ‘this labored’ or ‘it did not.’

I do not know if there’s sufficient backing of recent and completely different content material that’s occurring.

: .