The Indian entertainment sector has been registering a ‘blockbuster growth’, thanks to a buoyant economy. But steps need to be taken to sustain this growth. This formed the basis of discussion in the session on ‘Blockbuster growth - Indian entertainment, what will make the boom bigger?’
The session was moderated by Amit Khanna, Chairman, Reliance Entertainment, while the panelists included AP Parigi, MD and CEO, ENIL, and Director, BClockbuster CL; Peter Mukerjea, Chairman, INX Group; Yash Chopra, Chairman, FICCI Entertainment Committee and Yashraj Films; and, PricewaterhouseCoopers’ Smita Jha.
The session began with a short presentation on the entertainment industry by Timmy Kandhari, Executive Director and leader, Entertainment Practice, PWC.
Mukerjea opened the discussion sharing his optimism about the way the media and entertainment industry was growing. He said, “It is very encouraging to see that we are slated to grow and are on the right track. However, consumer behaviour patterns are very diverse and there was still much to be done. We still have only 50 per cent people who have a TV set, and 65 per cent of the population is under the age of 35 years. So, there is immense scope and opportunity waiting to be tapped.” He further said that the Government must form analogies to distribution and help the industry flourish.
Parigi spoke about out-of-home adverting and entertainment. Sharing his concerns and recommendations, he said, “The Government and forums like FICCI need to take media policies to the next level. We also need to substantiate and sustain this growth. The Indian entertainment industry has a huge potential and we must prepare ourselves to sustain this growth in the years to come.” According to him, this growth could be boosted and sustained through “high-end technology support”. “Further, we must have skilled human capital, for which the Government must make media and entertainment curriculum mainstream,” Parigi said, adding financial institutions in India must step in and help the industry grow rather than foreign companies coming into the country and funding the industry.
Parigi was also concerned about the slow growth of OOH advertising as a medium and urged the gathering to make it more digitised to help boost the industry. Commenting on the growing mobile music and ring tone download business, he said, “The mobile ring tone business is bigger than both the music and radio industry put together. It is a strong medium and growing faster than other traditional mediums.”
PWC’s Smita Jha also highlighted the low media penetration in India and recommended ways how the Government could help the industry grow faster – by increasing literacy in the country to boost print media and grow Internet access to boost online and IPTV India.
The session ended on an optimistic note with Yash Chopra talking about how the platforms and definitions of blockbuster films had changed. Pointing out that the whole landscape of a hit film had changed, Chopra said, “Earlier, a film was considered to be a hit based on the number of weeks it had run and did business in theaters. However, now there are different ways of revenue generation, now a film does business only in the first four weeks, while the rest is attained by various other marketing techniques like distribution rights, in-film branding, television rights, etc. Thus, now the platform of measurement has changed and I feel this is in favour of the industry.”
Also unveiled and discussed in the session was the FICCI-PWC report on the media and entertainment industry. The theme for the report this year is ‘Sustaining Growth’, and the report has five broad segments, including television, radio, print media and emerging media.
According to the report television saw a huge growth in 2007, with the main focus on general entertainment channels. Implementation of CAS and new advertisers along with mergers and acquisitions in the industry had led to this growth. Television industry is expected to have a 22 per cent cumulative growth to become a $600 billion industry by 2012.
Key Trends of FICCI-PWC report
1. Slated growth in Animation films
2. Mobile Music – 230 million mobile phone owners in India
3. Private sports leagues on a high
Key Themes of FICCI-PWC report
1. Migration to digital formats
2. Consolidation and integration
3. Intellectual property management
4. Continued content fragmentation
5. Media consumption will grow