Category — Entertainment Business

Warburg Pincus Invests in India’s Movie Theaters

New York City-based private equity firm Warburg Pincus, LLC., has acquired a 14% stake in PVR Limited, India’s largest cinema chain headquartered in Gurgaon, for about $120 million. The stake was bought from PVR’s existing investors, private equity firm Multiples Alternate Asset Management and PVR’s founders, including chairman and managing director Ajay Bijli.

“The Indian film and entertainment market is expanding rapidly and we look forward to supporting Ajay and the entire management team during the next phase of growth,” said Vishal Mahadevia, Warburg Pincus India managing director and co-head.

PVR Cinema

The Hollywood Reporter quotes a report by consultancy firm PricewaterCoopers, that says box-office revenue in India is estimated to reach $2.74 billion in 2020, up from $1.64 billion in 2015, growing at an average annual rate of 10.9 percent, even though India still remains a market with low screen penetration.


January 24, 2017   No Comments

Disney Focuses on Core Strengths in India

In India, Disney is aligning its business to its international organizational set up, and will focus on its Hollywood films and consumer products business.

In  India Hollywood movies are popular, and Disney’s consumer products segment has significant potential with the country’s character licensing market pegged at $600 million and growing at a pace of 15% to 18% annually. Characters such as Mickey Mouse, Iron Man, Darth Vader, Anna and Elsa among others appeal to the Indian audience.

Disney Logo

Jungle Book” was India’s highest grossing Hollywood film last year, and Disney has a multi-year output deal with Star India to broadcast some of its biggest global hits across Star India’s TV network in multiple languages. Apart from box office ticket sales of these movies when they are released in India, the success of these movies is also ensuring that Disney can generate additional revenues via these TV deals, reports Forbes.


January 7, 2017   No Comments

NBA To Open a Training Facility in India

The National Basketball Association announced plans to open a training facility for top prospects in India — NBA Academy India will focus on instruction for athletes ages 14 to 18 and will be located in the National Capital Region. It is scheduled to begin operation in April 2017 and will provide academic education through a school partnership, reports ESPN.

“Our mission with this academy is to develop and grow basketball in India,” NBA vice president of international basketball operations Brooks Meek said. “It’s focused on improving the level of the players on the national team and to really give a vision to Indian kids that there’s a chance and a pathway for them in basketball.”


By February 2017, representatives from NBA will select the first 24 male scholarship athletes from a series of scouting camps which they plan to hold across the country. The league will also select coaches, scouts and consultants to staff the academy.  Once the facility begins operations, top female athletes will be enrolled to train at the academy too.

“The strategy is a holistic approach,” Meek said. “This is off-court and on-court education, all of the things we feel that we want to have a direct impact on influencing the 360-degree development of an elite basketball player.”

December 22, 2016   No Comments

Amazon Video and Netflix Vie for India Market

With 460 million Internet users, India is a huge market that is driven by a strong demand for viewing locally generated content. According to KPMG India, U.S. and western programming commands a 0.5 percent viewership share on Indian television, compared to over 60 percent for domestic entertainment. Likewise, Hollywood and foreign films manage a less than 10 percent share at the box office, though this pie is showing signs of gradual growth. India is a market where local content rules.

Amazon upped the ante by offering its Prime Video at an introductory annual subscription of $7.50, at par with Netflix’s basic monthly fees, and similar to Netflix, Prime Video is offered for a free 30-day trial to new subscribers. It is also available free to Amazon’s existing Prime shopping service subscribers. This pricing takes on various other competitors such as ErosNow, owned by film major Eros International, which charges between 75 cents-$1.50 per month and Hotstar, from Fox’s Star India network, which charges about $3 per month for its premium service, says the Hollywood Reporter.

Bollywood Posters

Price is one factor to be considered, for sure. However, the actual competition exists in content creation, which according to Mumbai-based entertainment industry analyst Jehil Thakkar “is going to be the real differentiator between all OTT [over-the-top content which is the delivery of audio, video, and other media over the Internet without the involvement of a multiple-system operator in the control or distribution of the content] platforms.”

Netflix has so far announced its first Indian original, Sacred Games, which will be produced by Phantom Films, co-founded by film-maker Anurag Kashyap. Phantom has also been signed by Amazon to produce two shows, Stardust and The Family Man. Bollywood banner Excel Entertainment is producing three Amazon shows: Mirzapur, Powerplay and Made in Heaven. Amazon’s recent pacts include new titles from Dharma Productions, Vishesh Films and T-Series, among others.

Netflix initially acquired some Indian arthouse films and a few Bollywood and regional language fare. It recently announced a coup — a licensing pact with Bollywood star Shah Rukh Khan‘s banner Red Chillies Entertainment, giving it global rights to its recent Dear Zindagi and titles such as Happy New Year and Om Shanti Om.

December 17, 2016   No Comments

Netflix Strikes Deal with Bollywood’s Shahrukh Khan

Netflix announced a deal with Bollywood icon Shah Rukh Khan‘s Red Chillies Entertainment banner to license its catalog and new films globally.

Under this agreement, all members of Netflix will gain access to exclusive video-on-demand subscription to films made under Red Chillies banner as well as new films that will hit Indian theaters in the next three years reports Gizmodo.

SRK Movie
Netflix Chief Content Officer Ted Sarandos said, “Shah Rukh Khan is the most sought-after actor in the Indian film industry, and has played a huge role in bringing Indian cinema to the world stage. His moniker “King Khan” speaks to his status as a cultural icon and to the incredible popularity of his films among audiences worldwide.”

Khan said, “Red Chillies is surging ahead in global entertainment, and for the first time our great stories are going global on Netflix all at once and crossing all geographical barriers, waiting to be discovered over the world.”

December 16, 2016   No Comments