21 Oct 2017
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Viacom18 will build a suite of different offerings under the brand Voot: Sudhanshu Vats

MUMBAI: Upping its digital play, Viacom18 will build a portfolio of different offerings under the brand Voot.

This will enable Viacom18 to follow a multi-pronged strategy to grow its over-the-top (OTT) business. Besides, Voot, which depends on advertisements for its revenue, will adopt different business models.

Sudhanshu-Vats“As we go forward, in our digital we will build a portfolio, a suite of different offerings under the brand Voot where you will have offerings which are advertising-led video-on-demand (AVOD) and there will be other offerings. So, there will either be segmented offerings or there could be other business models as well which will come forward as we go along,” Viacom18 CEO Sudhanshu Vats told CNBC-TV18 in an interview.

Voot has close to 25 million users and about 40 minutes of usage per user per day. “This is arguably one of the highest in this space,” Vats said, adding that “the start has been fantastic”.

Vats admitted that the ad revenue market has seen a softness in the second half of FY17. “FY17 has turned out to be a tale of two halves for all of us at media and I think because of deceleration of advertising, the second half has not grown as well as we would have liked to. The good news however is, that slowly but surely January, February, March are recovering. So, March was a better month. There is recovery as we come into it, but not complete recovery,” Vats said in the interview.

Vats expects this fiscal to be better than FY17. “If you look at FY17, we have introduced 10 new channels. We have introduced five HD feeds of our existing channels which is three regional and Vh1 and Comedy Central. We have also deepened and widened our presence in regional through Colors Super which has got launched and we have introduced MTV Beats which is a 24×7 channel both in HD and SD. Finally, we have made an entry into Hindi movies through a Hindi movie channel called Rishtey Cineplex. So, we have made a lot of investment, we have made investments in other areas as well. So, we will continue to make investments and grow as we go forward,” he said.