The Empire Strikes Back
As if competition from Netflix and Amazon wasn’t enough for the Indian markets – there is a content war brewing locally. While players like Voot and OZee (Zee5 now) were working out their offering, Alt Balaji launched with some interesting shows like Bose, Dev DD and The Test Case which clearly reveal its mettle beyond the saas bahu sagas we otherwise know them for.
Add Hotstar to this mix and it all comes together as a heady mix of content that in a screen neutral world with low attention spans, makes for a compelling media choice.
With all these developments, little wonder that India’s media scene is a global cynosure.
Consider Disney’s gigantic US $ 52 Billion buyout of 21st Century Fox, which reportedly values Star India around US $ 15 Bn. The network bagged the global TV + Digital rights of the IPL outbidding Sony and Facebook for a record US $ 2.55 Bn.
So in one fell swoop Disney becomes the dominant player in India with performing assets in India’s general entertainment space and a pre-eminent sports network. Given Disney’s large sports broadcaster status in the US, with ESPN, the monetisation of the global rights of IPL looks even more assured.
The jewel is firmly back in the crown, but it’s Snow White’s crown now!