Cashing in on the fast growing DVD market, BBC Worldwide, the commercial arm of the British Broadcasting Corporation (BBC), has decided to launch its DVDs in India. It is likely to rope in music company Saregama as its partner for the venture.
BBC Worldwide holds the DVD rights for all its drama and comedy series including Yes Minister, Yes Prime Minister, collections of Shakespeare, the Sherlock Holmes series and several classics and drama series.
Currently, the domestic DVD market (sale and rental) is estimated to be around Rs 700 crore and is dominated by Moser Baer, Ultra, Shemaroo Entertainment and T-Series among others.
According to a Ficci-PricewaterhouseCoopers report, the home video market is expected to grow at a compound annual growth rate of 31 per cent to Rs 2,500 crore by 2011.
Explaining the rationale behind BBC Worldwide’s foray into the DVD business in India, John Smith, chief executive, BBC Worldwide said: “We have a large collection of DVDs in the UK and when the media industry is booming in India, it makes sense for us to be here.”
Smith said his company also wants to set up a production house that would also produce content for various television channels.
According to sources, through the Saregama-BBC Worldwide tie-up, BBC will bring in a large collection of English language classics at competitive price points, while Saregama’s collections will be available in the UK.
BBC Worldwide is also looking at expanding its brand portfolio across media platforms such as television, direct-to-home, print, online and radio.
Said Smith, “We are looking to bring in two more of our channels (BBC Knowledge & BBC Lifestyle) to India on the DTH platforms. Our radio tie-up with the Mid Day group and the print venture with Bennett Coleman are doing well. We plan to launch Lonely Planet Publications in India soon.”
On the proposed launch of its new media initiatives, Smith said its new website, bbc.com and video clip service, Kangaroo, would soon be launched for international markets. Both these online properties would be advertiser-funded and cater to international consumers.