Netflix reaches 125 mn subscribers; revenue jumps 40% to $3.7 bn: Reports

Netflix's earnings and subscriber growth beat even its own forecast and investor expectations, vows to get even more aggressive on content front

exchange4media News Service 18-April-2018

Netflix Inc. has reported a very encouraging subscriber growth that exceeded even its own forecast, for the first quarter, according to media reports. 

The video-streaming giant added 7.41 million subscribers in the first quarter, including 5.46 million internationally, says a report in The Wall Street Journal. 

The company also expects to increase subscribers in the current quarter. Netflix forecast a net addition of 6.2 million users, further reads the report. Also, it will spend more than $10 billion on content and marketing this year versus $1.3 billion on technology. 
Netflix currently has 118.9 million total paid subscriptions and 125 million total memberships. The international segment now accounts for 55% of overall subscriptions and 50% of revenue.

In its domestic market, Netflix has sought deals with corporate partners, namely Comcast Corp, T-Mobile and European pay-TV operator Sky to bring more subscribers on board.

The company has also been investing heavily in its content to retain and also continue the robust subscriber growth. Netflix expects to spend up to $8 billion on content this year. It will have 700 original shows and movies this year, including 80 series specific to local, non-English-speaking markets, says the WSJ report

Overall for the first quarter, Netflix reported a profit of $290 million, up from $178 million a year earlier. Revenue jumped 40% to $3.7 billion.

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Facebook accused of hiding inflated ad metrics for a year

The accusation has been made by a group of digital marketers in a lawsuit filed in the US court

exchange4media News Service 8 minutes ago

facebook logo

Facebook has been accused of intentionally obfuscating the problem of overstated average watch times on paid video ads for more than a year. The charge has been made by a group of digital marketers who filed a lawsuit in the US, according to media reports. 

The lawsuit followed a report in a leading journal in September 2016 that claimed that the social media giant had been miscalculating the average time users spent on paid video ads by 60 to 80 per cent. Responding to the report, Facebook at that time had said that the problem was there for nearly a month and that it had been fixed. 

But the digital markers claimed in the court that that Facebook knew of the problem for much longer than a month and did nothing for more than a year.
Facebook, has, however denied the allegations. A media report quoted a Facebook spokesperson as saying that the lawsuit is without merit and that they have filed a motion to dismiss these “claims of fraud.”

The spokesperson was quoted as saying, “Suggestions that we in any way tried to hide this issue from our partners are false. We told our customers about the error when we discovered it—and updated our help center to explain the issue.”


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Magzter: 50 million downloads and counting

Magzter brings together more than 10,500 trusted sources of content from more than 50 countries

exchange4media News Service 13 hours ago


Magzter, the digital magazine news-stand, has now crossed 50 million downloads, which is a phenomenal achievement by any yardstick. This humongous feat has become possible due to Magzter's consistent efforts in introducing innovative new features every month to attract new users across the globe.

In addition to Magzter's iOS and Android apps, Magzter also powers more than 7,000 magazine apps of renowned publishers on App Store and Google Play. Magzter's catalog of 10,500+ magazines from 4,000+ publishers is undoubtedly the largest and most diverse collection, which spreads across 40+ categories and 60+ languages.

While a recent study revealed that fake news spreads 70% quicker on social media, it has become extremely difficult for the common man to identify and neglect such misleading information.

Magzter brings together more than 10,500 trusted sources of content from more than 50 countries including the USA, UK, Canada, India, Singapore, Australia, South Africa, Spain, Mexico, Philippines, and Turkey, thereby acting as the one-stop solution for keeping people updated on all the latest happenings across the globe.

Magzter ensures that its users get timely information on their favorite topics from the most renowned and dependable sources, which ultimately saves the time and energy of users. Magzter started curating articles from best-selling magazines couple of years back, and it became an instant hit among the readers. Soon after launching articles, Magzter introduced ezRead 2.0, which presented magazine pages in responsive layouts that are automatically optimized for any size screen – smartphones as well as tablets. Magzter GOLD, the 'All-You-Can-Read' subscription model which offers unlimited access to 5,000+ magazines and premium articles at one low price, has been attracting thousands of new readers every month.

Magzter has also been conducting exciting contests to motivate more readers to take up digital reading. Such innovative strategies from Magzter have been instrumental in crossing the 50 million download mark. With its latest GPS-based offering – Smart Reading Zone, which provides unlimited access to thousands of best-selling magazines and curated premium articles for any location instantly, Magzter is increasingly becoming the preferred digital reading partner of hundreds of airports, hotels, restaurants, malls, clubs, libraries, corporates, educational institutions, and other commercial entities. By encouraging millions of people to read digitally, Magzter has so far saved 221,000+ trees and other natural resources, thereby playing an active role in fostering green revolution.

Speaking on the development, Girish Ramdas, CEO, Magzter Inc. said, "At Magzter, it has been a dream journey so far for us and I would like to extend my heartfelt thanks to our publishers, users and other strategic partners, who have been offering their unflinching support to us over the years. Kudos to the team at Magzter for giving their best every single day, without which this feat could not have been achieved! There are more than 1.5 Billion readers who still consume print magazines globally and we believe Magzter will be their reading destination of choice as they look for digital reading options.”.

Vijay Radhakrishnan, President, Magzter Inc. added, “We are ecstatic to know that we are trusted by over 50 million users across the world to fulfill their reading needs. This feat has increased our responsibility and we will continue to push our boundaries to take Magzter to new audiences and geographies. We are quite confident that we will the hit the 100 million user mark soon.”


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Meet Agrahyah - The First Voice Agency

The Mumbai-based agency was founded in 2017 by Sreeraman Thiagarajan, Rushabh Vasa and Uppal Shah

Venkata Susmita Biswas 1 hour ago

Sreeraman Thiagarajan Of Agrahyah Technologies

Digital agencies and social media agencies, move over. There’s a new kid on the block, it’s a voice agency. Yes, you read that right, a Voice Agency. Agrahyah Technologies Pvt Ltd, a first-of-its-kind voice agency, is a Mumbai-based software and content company that is building a suite of products and content in Indian vernacular languages on voice platforms. 

The company’s game plan is to be a first-mover in the voice space helping brands become first-movers to gain competitive advantage. 

Sreeraman Thiagarajan, Co-founder of Agrahyah Technologies, says it is time that “brands should be chalking out a clear voice strategy.” According to him brands need to take voice seriously because “unlike flashy, new, nice to have technologies like VR and AR, voice is a need to have; since consumers are increasingly using voice to interact with computer, home appliances, and even automobiles, it is time for brands to be there to welcome their customers.” 

He adds that people born in digital era are impatient; “they can now talk at 150 words per minute to voice assistants in comparison to typing 40 words per minute on a touch screen.” Not just that, around 28 per cent of search on Google is voice and it is growing at north of 200 per cent. 

Brands need to start thinking on the lines of how to exploit the potential of voice; where voice can help them win. Among the strategies brands must tap into “sustainable content plans like podcasts, streaming or even regular updates,” he explains. 

Thiagarajan’s philosophy for voice is simple, be where the consumer is. “Decades ago, brands had agencies to help them craft communication based on consumer insights. Ten years ago, brands warranted a digital agency to help them be present on web, mobile and social media. Now, it is time to have an agency that will help brands to be on voice assistant platforms like Amazon Alexa and Google Assistant.” 

Thiagarajan says that while technology companies like TCS and Mphasis are also in the business of providing voice solutions, Agrahyah is well-poised to understand the brand’s needs and accordingly craft solutions. “Traditional tech companies offer technology solutions but have low sense of brand; digital agencies offer content but lack technology prowess. We put them all together to create India’s first Voice Agency.” He adds, “Our in-house subject experts strike a perfect balance between product design, voice user interface, technology and sustainable content (audio, podcasts, text) to address brand’s objectives." 

For brands, a voice strategy is broadly of two types - a brand can be made available on voice assistants like Alexa and Google Assistant or a voice assistant can be integrated within an app, or a connected device (even includes a microwave or washing machine). “Over the next 6 to 12 months, we will see both these types of use cases growing equally. More and more people are using voice as an UI, purchasing smart assistants, getting habituated to getting things done without lifting a finger,” he said.  

Voice is category agnostic. “Increasingly, white goods, auto makers, set top boxes, bulbs, and security cameras are all being made voice assistant compatible; they pair with voice assistants just out of the box to give a seamless experience to consumers,” Thiagarajan pointed out. 

But there is one impediment to the growth of voice - language. “Though voice assistants are Hinglish compliant and are getting Hindi updates, we are a land of diversity. Audience speaking only Dravidian languages and not English must have to wait for voice assistants to speak their languages,” says Thiagarajan.  

Agrahyah is one of Amazon’s preferred partners for Alexa Skills Development. The company has “built Alexa Skills for enterprise brands and have built products it fully owns (Hindi Jokes, Better Heart, etc.)”. The company is also working closely with Google to create simple solutions for otherwise complex interfaces which will be launched very soon.

“Our experience has been an exciting learning curve, we realised how creating a VUI (voice user interface) is more complex than just coding scripts,” Thiagarajan confesses.  

Founded in 2017 by Thiagarajan, former VP digital at Public India, along with Rushabh Vasa and Uppal Shah. The bootstrapped firm currently has six clients - Abbott Healthcare, Danone, Puranik Builders, Digene, and Appu Series. 

Principal Correspondent, exchange4media, Mumbai Susmita is a digital marketing reporter at exchange4media. She writes on latest developments in the ever-changing world of digital media and in-depth stories on all things advertising.


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Sakal Media, Amazon enter exclusive partnership this festive season

This is the first time in Sakal’s 87-year-old history that regional Diwali editions will be launched exclusively through Amazon

exchange4media News Service 21 hours ago

sakal media group logo

Sakal Media Group (SMG) has signed an exclusive agreement with the e-commerce giant, which will help the group expand their readership base throughout the world. Subscription-based purchases can be made exclusively through and also Sakal Publication website (


“Digital media is a large driver of change. And through this festival period, we are exploring how the emerging potential of e-commerce can be utilised to expand the reach of Diwali Ank, which has been traditionally limited to our readers that we can reach through traditional channels. Through this exclusive deal with a giant like Amazon, we will be able to reach out to Marathi readers across India and the world. The idea is also about disseminating good people stories and this opens scope to look at podcasts and other digital formats which we would like to explore,” said Pradeep Dwivedi, CEO of Sakal Media Group.


Emphasising from the reach point of the view for advertisers, Dwivedi added, “The advertisers and the media buying agencies recognise the kind of evolved relationship we have with our readers in Maharashtra and beyond. This partnership on our offerings further widens our reach and opens up doors to promote products and brands in wider geographies.”


The regional languages press in India has an age-old tradition of publishing special issues during the festive season. Leading Marathi publishers have  brought out Diwali Ank for over a century and Sakal has been an important leader of this tradition. Sakal Publications publishes a total of 19 Diwali Issues across Maharashtra, which include six major offerings:


Shabdadeep: This a leading thought-product in Diwali Ank. The 2018 edition explores the theme, ‘Idea of India’ and includes travel stories and experiences. The festive issue will feature memories of eminent personalities from the background of art, culture, and literature. Stories and poems are also an additional attraction in this.


Saptahik Sakal: Running successfully for over three-and-half decades, this year’s theme explores travel to learn, and it includes experiences of people from various age groups.


Agrowon: It’s an extended part of Agrowon, the world’s first agricultural daily. The Diwali edition will celebrate stories of farmers, who have successfully established farm practices to overcome issues of farm labourers.


Tanishka: This is a magazine targeted towards women and has been successful for the past 12 years. The Diwali theme explores women and her purse. Women from various parts of Maharashtra and across professional spectrum will be featured through stories. There will also be success stories of farm widows, Kashmiri half widows, etc. TV and film personality, Ekta Kapoor will be interviewed for the 2018 special issue.


Premier: Apart from the inside news and the popular views from the glitzy world of the Indian film industry, the editorial feature for the Diwali ank is 100 years of the censor board. There’s also a special story on the making of the award-winning 1982 movie, Gandhi, to commemorate Mahatma Gandhi’s 150th birth anniversary.


Sarkarnama: This is a new addition to Sakal’s Diwali Ank. Sakarnama is the most popular Marathi political web portal and its first ever print version is in the form of Diwali Ank. The key attraction is a survey analysing voters for 2019. There is also a special feature on tomorrow’s influential young leaders. The magazine touches upon political news and experiences of the popular leaders.


The products are available on the following links:



Saptahik Sakal:







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YouTube goes down across the globe for around 1 hour

During the outage, YouTube users were not able to login, upload or watch content on the platform.

exchange4media News Service 21 hours ago


YouTube suffered an outage on Wednesday morning, with the users seeing error messages while trying to login. The video platform, however, rectified the problem soon and was back up within around an hour.

According to reports, during the outage the users were not able to login, upload or watch content on the platform.

YouTube did not give any reason for the problem but did acknowledge the outage with a tweet, apolozising for the problem and thanking users for their patience.

Following the sudden crash of the Google-owned site, #YouTubeDOWN soon became one of the top trends on Twitter India then.  


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Myntra-Jabong CMO and CSO to exit end of this year

Ananth Narayanan, CEO of Myntra-Jabong will continue to head Jabong, and Manohar Kamath, CXO & Chief of Myntra Fashion Brands will take over as interim Head of Categories

exchange4media News Service 1 day ago

Gunjan soni Myntra Jabong

According to media reports, in an email circulated within the organisation by Ananth Narayanan, CEO of Myntra-Jabong, it said that the Chief Marketing Officer of Myntra and Head of Jabong, Gunjan Soni, and Chief Strategy Officer and Head of Categories of Myntra, Ananya Tripathi, have decided to leave the organisation. Both will continue to work till the end of this year. 

Narayanan wrote in the email, “Gunjan has played a key role in firmly positioning the brand Myntra as the leading destination for fashion and lifestyle. Ananya has played a key role in strategy and made five successful acquisitions, including Jabong.” 

Narayanan will continue to head Jabong, working closely with the teams on a daily basis. Manohar Kamath, CXO & Chief of Myntra Fashion Brands will take over as interim Head of Categories along with his current portfolio.

According to sources in the media report, Soni is going to work at Singapore-based online fashion company Zalora as its CEO, whereas Tripathi will join a global investment firm KKR as an operating partner.

Only a few months ago, retail giant Walmart invested $16 billion in Flipkart, the parent company of Myntra and Jabong. Walmart recently transferred four of its senior leaders to Flipkart Group, including Walmart’s M&A Head Emily McNeal who joins as Senior Vice President and Group Chief Financial Officer. Earlier this year, Myntra announced its plans to launch 100 stores in the next two years while continuing to push their in-house brands. 


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NDTV and Airtel launch live channel for smartphones

Available on the Airtel TV app, NDTV Hop will offer Airtel users exclusive content ranging from Bollywood movies, news, pop culture, fashion, technology, auto and online shopping

exchange4media News Service 1 day ago


Mobile phone giant Airtel and television network NDTV have collaborated to launch a live channel, NDTV Hop, which will cater specifically to smartphones. The channel, which is available on the Airtel TV app, will offer users exclusive content ranging from Bollywood movies, news, pop culture, fashion, technology, auto and online shopping.

The app will be available on both iOS and Android on:

Speaking about the collaboration, media reports quoted Sameer Batra, Chief Executive, Content and Apps, Bharti Airtel, as saying that their deep understanding of customer’s content consumption preferences coupled with NDTV's expertise is sure to create an enjoyable experience for users.

“We are delighted to join hands with NDTV to launch the world’s first live channel for smartphones. Today’s tech-savvy millennial wants to consume digital content on the go and our tie-up with NDTV is aimed at facilitating just that," he reportedly said.

Suparna Singh, Group Chief Executive Officer, reportedly said that the  partnership with Airtel would allow them to "use to dream potential the possibilities of digital and telecom technology."

"We know younger users want great content on the small screen. This is original content for them, not replicated or ported from other platforms. It’s very exciting to be rolling this out at this time in India,” Singh reportedly said. 


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Look at everything from data privacy lens to act responsibly: CVL Srinivas

WPP held its first ever 'Date with Data' meet in Mumbai on Tuesday to decode issues including user privacy, case studies, data mining, and insights leading to award winning creatives

exchange4media News Service 1 day ago

date with data

WPP brought together industry leaders to discuss the data conundrum at its first 'Date with Data' meet held in Mumbai on Tuesday. Among the major themes discussed during the day were data protection, using data in various innovative ways, tapping into consumer data for e-commerce, and leveraging data to derive creative inspiration. 
In his opening remarks, WPP India Country Manager, CVL Srinivas said that the community needs to act responsibly with regard to data. “The European General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) mandates that data is not leveraged without explicit consumer consent. GDPR puts the consumer in the driver's seat of control, enabling when, where and by whom, his or her data can be leveraged. When GDPR went live, businesses all over Europe had to re-engineer the way they handled data, to regain consent from every individual, in order for that data to be used in marketing, analytics or insights,” he said. 
“In India, we have an advantage where actually, on the ground floor of this change, if we can get our fundamentals right, we'll be better prepared. Let's discuss how we should look at everything in data from a data privacy, or “DP” lens, so that we all can act responsibly," he said, setting the agenda for the day.

Expressing concerns over what the implementation of data protection regulations could mean for marketers in India, Shuvadip Banerjee, VP Marketing Services, ITC Limited, said, “We do not know how much of our ‘golden records’ will remain golden.” Siddharth Banerjee, EVP, Marketing, Vodafone, also noted that the enriched data which has been very useful to marketers in drawing insights might take a hit. “The era of the Wild Wild West is over,” he said alluding to the impunity with which consumer data has been used so far. Banerjee said that rewarding customers to share their data would be one way to extract data in the future. 

In a panel discussion on ‘Connected Commerce’, Kashyap Vadapalli, CMO, Pepperfry, and Sanjay Suri, CTO, Nykaa, shared innovative and counter-intuitive case studies of tapping into consumer data collected online to actually shape offline activities like deciding where to locate stores and warehouses. Another person who truly wowed the audience was Vikas Agnihotri, Country Director, India Sales, Google. Agnihotri listed numerous examples of using online data to inform offline business activities. Google has worked with the government to zero in on locations for the next 30 airports based on tickets searched online and where those searches are originating from. Google is also working with Big Bazaar to decide the locations of the retailers next 9000 stores. Interestingly, Google’s data mining has shown that Big Bazaar does not need 9000 stores, but can actually make do with 6600 strategically placed stores for maximum ROI.

Later in the day, a panel comprising Gauravjeet Singh, Head Media, South Asia, Unilever; Vasuta Agarwal, VP and GM, South Asia, InMobi; Rahul Gautam, VP Marketing, Ford India; Karthik Sharma, CEO South Asia, Wavemaker and moderator Sunder Muthuraman, CEO and Global Chief Client Officer, Kantar Analytics, discussed audience planning and the most appropriate and effective ways to use a Data Management Platform. The panel concurred that every marketer needs a DMP which could either reside with the marketer, with the agency or a partner like InMobi, but there is no two ways about having a DMP. 

Finally, after a day loaded with the discussion on the science and math of data, it was the turn of the creative minds in the room to throw light on how they use data to kindle creativity. Kainaz Karmakar, CCO, Ogilvy West, noted that a mere data point about the how likelihood of a child dying due to diarrhoea or a respiratory disease is connected to hand washing habits, leading her and her team to design a huge campaign for ITC Savlon. The campaign went on to win the Grand Prix for Creative Effectiveness at the Cannes Lions Festival of Creativity. 

Aditya Swamy, Head - Agency Partnerships, Google, noted that while data is being used to inform creativity, it is the coupling of data with environmental data that can really sway a campaign and take it to the next level. 

“I'm sure you will start joining the “data dots” to see a bigger and more beautiful picture emerge at the end of the day," said Srinivas at the start of the sessions. We couldn't agree more. 


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Foodpanda acquires Holachef

Foodpanda will take over Holachef’s business including its kitchens, equipment, as well as bring onboard the company’s employees

exchange4media News Service 1 day ago

foodpanda delivery

Foodpanda has completed the acquisition of Mumbai-based food-tech venture Holachef. Through this collaboration, Foodpanda marks its strategic entry into cloud kitchens and plans to launch its own brand of food products in different categories.


Pranay Jivrajka, CEO of Foodpanda India, said, “At Foodpanda, we are committed to building for unique local tastes and palate choices of the Indian consumer. Through the Ola platform, we also have an unmatched access to over 150 million customers and an understanding of their preferences. We have been able to bring an enhanced experience for millions of customers over the past year. We aim to build India’s largest cloud kitchen network that will be a major step in further elevating the food experience for our customers. I am delighted to welcome the Holachef team on board and look forward to their joining us in our mission of delivering superior food experiences to a billion Indians.”


Saurabh Saxena, Co-founder of Holachef, said, “Our mission with Holachef is to serve incredible food experiences to customers through kitchens with the highest quality & hygiene standards. We are delighted to join hands with Foodpanda, to accelerate our mission. We are thrilled to be part of Foodpanda’s and Ola’s passionate team that is truly changing the food experience for a billion Indians!”


As part of the acquisition, Foodpanda will take over Holachef’s business including its kitchens, equipment, as well as bring onboard the company’s employees. Holachef’s founders are set to join Foodpanda’s leadership team.


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The Maddies 2018 jury meet focuses on impact to select winners

The jury meet on Monday was led by Ajay Srinivasan, Chief Executive, Aditya Birla Capital

exchange4media News Service 2 days ago


The Maddies, exchange4media group's annual awards property that honours the best work in mobile advertising, is back. On Monday, the jury, led by Ajay Srinivasan, Chief Executive, Aditya Birla Capital, screened through 180 entries, on the basis of concept, innovation and execution, to select the winners. But the main focus was impact and the results.


The other members in the jury were Nandan Srinath, Director Response at The Times Group; Kavita Chaturvedi, Head of Marketing & Executive Committee Member, ITC Limited, (Foods Division); Asha Kharga, Chief Marketing Officer, Axis Bank; Gurmit Singh, Dauwau Global; Kaacon Sethi, Chief Corporate Marketing Officer, Dainik Bhaskar Group; Dippak Khurana, Co-founder and CEO, Vserv; Ramakrishnan Laxman, Head of Digital Business, ABP LIVE; Rameet Arora, COO and Head of Digital, HT Digital Streams; Abdul Khan, CEO, 4 Marketing Technology Venture; Anshul Punhani, Chief Marketing Officer-APAC and Gulf, Monster; Navin Khemka, CEO, South Asia, Mediacom; Abraham Alapatt, President & Group Head - Marketing, Service Quality, Value Added Services & Innovation, Thomas Cook; Kedar Teny, Head - Marketing & OAP – Sports, Sony Pictures Networks; and Harshit Desai, Director – Customer & User Experience, Management Consulting, KPMG.

The winners were selected through an extensive selection process. Jury members independently inspected each entry and rated them based on their respective judging criteria.

Talking about the meet, Srinivasan shared that he was fortunate to be with “smart people with great experience and understanding of both the marketing space as well as the mobile marketing space.” He said he was impressed with the entries.


Talking about the entries further, he said, “The entries were a mixed bag; both cutting-edge and some which could have been better. I think we should get a little sharper in defining the entries. Some entries figured in too many categories. So we needed to be sharper with which category the entries were into. It was a very efficient jury process. We were able to easily identify the winners,” he mentioned.

According to Rameet Arora, the quality of entries in the ‘gender equality’ category was truly outstanding, educative and empowering.  
“We had a tough time judging it,” he said. He added, “The conversations in the jury and our ability to separate the wheat from the chaff to pick out the deserving winners were quite fantastic.”

Maddies will be held on October 31.


For more details, click here:


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