Star injects fresh funding of Rs 1066 cr into Hotstar

MUMBAI: Video on demand (VoD) platform Hotstar has received fresh round of fund infusion from its parent company Star India and Star US Holdings. The two companies have together pumped in Rs 1066 crore ($153 million) into Novi Digital Entertainment, which runs Hotstar.

The fresh round of funding comes as Hotstar scales up its content and technology. On the content side, the platform has launched a new label Hotstar Specials under which it will come out with original digital content. Hotstar has also been ramping up its platform by aggressively acquiring third party content.

The fund infusion was reported by business intelligence platform paper.vc. As per the platform, Star India has invested Rs 832 crore while the remaining Rs 234 crore has come from Star US holdings.

It is pertinent to note that the fund infusion has come nearly seven months after Novi Digital received Rs 516 crore from Star US. In 2017, Star India had injected Rs 1233 crore ($192.04 million) into Hotstar.

Novi Digital had posted a posted a loss of Rs 489 crore for the fiscal ended March 2017, which is a 20% increase over the previous fiscal’s loss of Rs 408.9 crore.

The company’s revenue from operations increased 81.4% to Rs 321 crore from Rs 178.5 crore in FY16. Subscription saw a four-fold increase to Rs 129.4 crore from Rs 24.17 crore while ad revenue was up 24% to Rs 168 crore. The revenue from licensing of content rights stood at Rs 23 crore compared to Rs 19.2 crore in FY16.

In FY16, the company’s content cost stood at Rs 165.9 crore while advertising and the promotional cost was at Rs 154.6 crore. The expenditure for technical services was Rs 147.5 crore.