Thanks to Fullscreen, Hollywood and Bollywood are closer than ever.
The Culver City digital media company has entered an exclusive partnership with Indian multichannel network Qyuki to tap into the South Asian country’s growing online video market.
The cross-Pacific alliance gives Qyuki’s content creators access to Fullscreen’s resources, including its video platform to better monetize and distribute content as well as build out their audiences. Qyuki will also have the ability to work with Fullscreen’s global brand partners, such as AT&T Inc., McDonald’s Corp. and General Electric Co., for marketing opportunities with its Indian talent.
Qyuki, which launched in December 2012 to produce videos that cover India’s lifestyle and entertainment scenes, currently posts numbers that are a fraction of Fullscreen’s 55,000 content creators, 450 million subscribers and 4 billion monthly views.
But online video consumption in India has doubled in the last three years, according to comScore. Roughly 60 million viewers are watching 3.7 billion videos each month, and millennials make up more than three-fourths of the country’s online audience.
And Fullscreen is already the second most popular YouTube channel among Indian viewers. (Walt Disney Co.’s Maker Studios ranks third.)
“This partnership will strengthen our global creator network and further empower the next generation of Indian creators with Fullscreen’s global best practices in content creation and monetization,” Fullscreen President Ezra Cooperstein said in a statement.
An alliance with an Indian network would dramatically expand Fullscreen’s footprint by giving it a direct line into the Asia-Pacific region. Qyuki has an exclusive relationship with Universal Music India and multiple production studios in Chennai, Bangalore and Mumbai, including one in Dharavi, Mumbai’s oldest slum and one of the largest in the world.
The deal is the latest in a number that has given multichannel networks, or MCN’s, a toehold in the booming Asian market.
StyleHaul, a Hollywood fashion and beauty MCN led by Chief Executive Stephanie Horbaczewski, set up its first Asian outpost in Singapore in September and is already adding a second staffer.
“For brands, that’s sort of the next area of concentration,” Horbaczewski told the Business Journal last month.
Fullscreen’s Indian partnership comes just months after its acquisition by Otter Media, a joint venture of Chernin Group and AT&T. The deal, estimated to be worth $200 million to $300 million, has fueled rapid growth at the network. It acquired gaming and comedy studio Rooster Teeth in November.
Qyuki was co-founded by Indian film director Shekhar Kapur; composer and music producer A.R. Rahman; and executive Samir Bangara, who had a brief stint as managing director of Disney’s digital division in India.
“We believe we have found a great partner in Fullscreen, which will enable us to not only grow the Indian market rapidly but also present Indian talent at a global scale,” said Bangara, who serves as Qyuki’s managing director, in a statement.
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