'YouTube will continue to be catalyst for creative revolution in this country'

In part two of his first-ever interview in his new role, Sanjay Gupta, Country Manager Google India, gives us more insight about YouTube, ad market growth and his journey so far

e4m by Nawal Ahuja & Naziya Alvi Rahman
Published: Nov 19, 2020 8:35 AM  | 11 min read
Sanjay Gupta

Today, we bring you the second part of the two-part interview with Sanjay Gupta, country manager and vice president sales and operations at Google India. In his first-ever interview since he took up the new role, Gupta speaks to exchange4media about the unrivalled position that YouTube continues to hold despite immense competition in the OTT space. With COVID hitting the Indian economy, Gupta discusses the silver lining for the advertising industry in the backdrop of a drastic increase in screen-time. He also addresses the perception of Google being the tech behemoth and its share in the digital advertising market. To conclude, he discusses with us the challenges of settling in a new role in the times of Corona. Below are edited excerpts:- 

Q: With over 40 OTTs been launched in the last few years, how do you make sure YouTube continues to be a leading brand?

YouTube is in a very interesting place at the moment. Two things YouTube has done brilliantly in this country. First is the diversity of content that is unmanned in India compared to any other platform. Secondly, the democratization of content creation is the real big issue globally and even more in India. What I mean by diversity is that if you look at TV content today, it is fundamentally entertainment content and now in some way, topped up with the news. What we have learnt over the years and if you look at YouTube consumption online in India started with entertainment to begin with like Bollywood Music and some shows.

But what it moved into in a very interesting space was “experiences”. On YouTube, you realize there is a multifacetedness of the talent in this country. You will see therefore the amount, width and depth of content experiences. Things which have never been explored are done through YouTube.

The third piece of content is education and learning because that is what Indians desire. YouTube has created a pool of content of entertainment, experiences and education which makes them have a diverse set of content. No one in the market today has all of it.

Content creation has been a prerogative of a very few in this country. What YouTube has done, however, is saying if you can use a mobile, you think you are creative and can create content I’ll help you make money out of that. Today we have 2.5k creators in India who have one million followers. So, the funnel of content creators has changed from almost hundreds to million in the last 10-15 years.

The content strategy that we have is very different from what others do. We want to play in the area of creating millions of content creators and unleash the creativity of this content enabling it by providing technology and tools for them to create that content. The vision we see for the future of content is billions of creators and the best of technology being deployed. YouTube should continue to be the catalyst for a creative revolution in this country.

 Q: Short videos have been a big hit in recent times and are giving similar yet quicker content-creating opportunities like YouTube the common man. What is your view on short videos?

We have just launched YouTube shorts in India. This is the first country in the world to launch shorts. It also showcases the focus on India and how we want to solve for India differently. It is in the same philosophy that enables creativity to be unleashed. We are doubling down to provide young creators with easy tools and we will see Google continue with its ongoing strategy.

Q: Advertising industry was hit immensely by COVID but to a certain extent the slowdown began even before. How do you see the overall ad market growth in India in the next three years?

Before I answer that, I want to discuss two big attitudinal shifts that have taken place in the society in the last few years. And COVID has accentuated them further. There is a big attitudinal shift in the society in the way mobile is perceived. Now, it is your personal screen. Secondly, how much is it used to make payments. As of last month, the number of mobile banking transactions through UPI was reported to be seven crore a day.

So far the content consumption of India had not grown for over two decades. Given that the number of screens has gone up dramatically from 20 crores to 65 crores on the back of 45 crore smartphones, the amount of consumption growth that you will see on content using mobile phones will just keep growing. This will be true for everyone be it Hotstar, Netflix or YouTube. We will see the consumption grow from 3 ½ hours per day per consumer on an average put together will go 7 to 8 hours depending on how much data capacity can be increased through 4G or 5G because it will be individual streaming.

The business models can now be many including subscription as a business model. So, though the TV industry had been built on 70% advertising and roughly 30-40% on a subscription, in digital that 40% was missing. So both advertisements were limited and subscription was missing fully. Now, due to these changes of consumption and payment, the market is going to explode on subscription plus advertising put together in a very dramatic way. Different companies will have different strategies around them.

From an advertising industry point of view what it does is if you get a lot of consumers to come on digital to consume any content it will equally target consumers. During COVID, people’s concern on cash has gone up and everyone wants to conserve their money.

Digital provides now at scale the opportunity to target. Therefore, you don’t need to target every consumer who is watching a show every night or a match or a TV show. You can now decide that you want to talk to only 10% of them and do it effectively.

This will allow for an explosion of consumption of content but also an explosion in advertising revenues driven by digital. The forced change because of the ongoing environment the small and medium enterprises are adopting the technologies faster than big companies. Both the adoption of technology and the ability to target will put SMEs online in a very dramatic fashion. When I look back at a 3 to 5-year trend, I see the advertising businesses growing dramatically much faster than the last 5 to 10 years on the back of these fundamental shifts of consumption, payments through subscription models that will emerge and the fact that people can target consumers and conserve cash. Advertising even in the short term in the next 2 or 3 quarters will look tough and dire but with these fundamental changes advertising, is set to grow dramatically.

How much will COVID-led slowdown affect the projected growth numbers?

The reality is that our per capita income decreased last quarter when GDP came down and that hurts the spending ability and marketing money. Even though incomes came down, a lot of expenditure on travel or buying also reduced. Still, the ability to spend on the things that I desire has still not come down dramatically. So consumers may not eat in a restaurant, but if they want to order good cheese on Amazon, they would. The spending won’t down in some of the core areas people care about.

The second big change is retail. People use to buy stuff from their next-door grocery store and now the growth of e-commerce for these items has grown in the last 6 months. The businesses, which are now growing, are those that are spending marketing money. The businesses that are not growing are the ones that weren’t spending marketing money earlier.

New markets are emerging like fintech, e-commerce, ad tech. There are players in ed-tech who are now creating products that have never existed before. They all have the potential to become over a billion dollars businesses.

Given the trajectory of your growth, perhaps you are likely to become 2X of the size of most media companies. That kind of enormous size and power concentrated in one company sometimes become a concern for other businesses. How is Google India dealing with the rise in power and keeping away from competition?

The real business for us is the advertising business and the other business approach is the Cloud business which is from our point of view. In both these businesses, our share of the total market is still very small. So digital is only around 25%-30% of the total market and we have a share of that digital market.

We are a small share of the total advertising market. Similarly, when you look at Cloud there are much bigger technology companies in India, which are much bigger. So I think our share in the market in both the advertising and the technology cloud front where we are enabling businesses to transform is a very small share of the total. So from an Indian perspective, I don’t see that we are so big at this moment.  

But we are an important part of consumers’ life and people deeply care about us. When COVID happened, one of the big things we did was getting the right information to the consumers on what COVID means to them. A lot of time was spent on providing the right information and getting it through in different languages and adapting to mobile and audio formats. We did a partnership with Vodafone where people could call a number and learn more about COVID. In those few months, we got close to 4 billion queries in India on COVID.

 We also did a very big thing on Google maps on enabling food shelters in the country. There were many food shelters but people did not know how to go out and find it. We worked in partnership with many state governments to ensure that Google Maps had the location for it. In hundreds of cities, centres were created and thousands of people could use Google Maps to get there. Google Pay alone for the PM care fund collected over Rs 120 crore on the back of many people donating.

For me, the most important thing, because we are an important part of the consumer’s life, is ensuring that we are doing something meaningful and valuable so that we are helping the society and being responsible in everything we do. This is where our mission also comes in play to make the internet available for a billion Indians. Revenue and business will follow if we are doing the right things so that the consumer’s affinity remains.

You will soon complete your first year at Google. How did you navigate your new role in a pandemic year? What has your journey been like this year?

This has been a unique year for me, to be honest. I joined in January and we went on work from home early March in India at Google. Eight weeks, when I could physically travel, I went to all the offices in India in Mumbai, Gurgaon, Bangalore and Hyderabad. To get deep into an organization you need to know people well and understand the business well. I must say that the silver lining for me is that COVID accelerated my learning curve. The good thing was that since we went digital, the physical world couldn’t constrain me. Given things went digital, I could meet people not only in India but anywhere in the world at the click of a button. We formed cross-functional teams in India for the response team to COVID and we were meeting every day virtually. Therefore, the engagement and depth of engagement that happened with people in India and abroad went up dramatically. That is quite contradictory to the expectations even I had at that time where I had thought it will take me much longer to learn about people and the business.

However, I’m still in a learning phase but I’m blessed that I’m able to engage very deeply and people at Google have welcomed and embraced me in a very positive way. It has been a 10-month journey of huge learnings and in some way, using the power of technology in a small way through Google to help the society has been impactful. We took Google Readalong deeper in the world on the back of COVID and GPay because people needed it more during this time.

We did a lot of innovation on YouTube be it on learning or on shorts only for India. Using the power of technology, we can solve for India in the areas of language, payments, learning and education and just getting more credible information going through.

Google has a unique culture and I’m learning through my time here. It is an organization, which has a very high level of equity and every person can make a difference in Google. Everyone is a boss in some way in Google and everyone can make a difference in the area they are working on. It is huge empowerment and ability to make a difference in the area that you own and drive.

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FAST & Freemium: Why more & more advertisers are streaming towards Connected TV

These platforms, say experts, provide access to massive amounts of user data, enabling precise targeting and cost-effective advertising campaigns

By Shantanu David | Mar 24, 2023 8:27 AM   |   4 min read

connected TV

Even the most traditional advertisers are now dipping their toes into streaming, while more adventurous brands are already making a splash. And with the introduction of subscriptions with ads on streaming platforms like Netflix, Disney Plus, as well as Jio’s push towards freemium TV, the Connected Television (CTV) landscape is evolving with each new login and the following reams of data, and terms like FAST and Freemium are creating more buzz than an old cable TV’s antenna.

Swati Kardak, Group Account Manager, Media Planning & Buying, SoCheers, believes that with IPL in their kitty and now rolling out of freemium TV, Jio has already got the ball rolling for them. “This is a big boon for advertisers and brands as FAST (Free, ad-supported TV), will open up opportunities for advertisers to widen their addressable audience size. It will also work as a magnet to attract more audiences to the streaming platform and ensure a long-term client relationship.”

Meanwhile, “As subscription plans with ads are introduced, advertisers and brands have a unique opportunity to reach a large and engaged audience. These platforms provide access to massive amounts of user data, enabling precise targeting and cost-effective advertising campaigns,” says Keerthi R Kumar, Business Head-South, FoxyMoron.

According to the recently launched Gateway to Open Internet report, published by The Trade Desk and Kantar, 33% of consumers perceive ads on OTT/CTV as more premium than those on YouTube and other user-generated content platforms, making CTV/OTT a particularly attractive avenue for brands.

Additionally, 44% of consumers expect to significantly increase their usage of CTV/OTT in the next six months. The surge in popularity of Connected TVs also allows advertisers to reach a subset population of cord-cutters that they cannot reach on linear TV.

Tejinder Gill, General Manager, The Trade Desk, says that to capitalize on this fast-growing ad opportunity on OTT, brands will need to invest in data-driven advertising tools on platforms like The Trade Desk to help them to more effectively target and engage consumers across the multiple OTT platforms that consumers engage with today.

In Kardak’s opinion, Freemium will bring about a major cord-cutting change and a huge shift towards Freemium is most likely going to come from the traditional TV audience as they will be able to avail entertainment for free. “Therefore, brands and advertisers will have to be very mindful about picking the right content on FAST for their ad placement. In comparison, the audience on FAST is likely to be more massy, so, brands who have products or services catering to a larger audience should look at partnering with them,” she says.

The abundance of content and vast user base on platforms like Netflix and Disney Plus provide advertisers with the opportunity to target affluent audiences. With the introduction of ad-supported tiers, advertisers can leverage high-quality content to reach their desired target audience.

“AVOD and Freemium models offer precision targeting, real-time optimization, and measurement, leading to a shift in advertising budgets from traditional TV to OTT. As competition increases, advertisers must understand each platform's audience, engagement patterns, and results to make informed decisions that align with their business objectives,” says Kardak.

Vikas Mangla, Founder, Digital ROI, points out that by parsing through the consumer data available through viewership on these platforms, advertisers can develop new ad formats that engage viewers and do not disrupt their viewing experience. “Interactive ads, sponsored content, and native advertising are some of the ad formats that can help advertisers achieve this. For instance, Voot offers non-intrusive ad formats like sponsored content and integrated ads that blend seamlessly with the content,” he says.

Advertisers and publishers also need to analyze the collectible data to gain insights into their audience's behavior and preferences. This can help them optimize their ad campaigns, improve their targeting, and measure their ad campaign's effectiveness.

“For example, MX Player uses data analytics to track viewer behavior and preferences to create personalized recommendations for each viewer. Advertisers can also use data analytics to track ad performance and optimize their campaigns accordingly,” says Mangla, adding that publishers can leverage the popularity of streaming TV by creating content that resonates with their audience.

That being said, as Gill points out, “Another important consideration is frequency capping which is important to ensure consumers are not seeing the same ad multiple times across the different OTT platforms that they are engaging with. This is where programmatic media buying platforms offer value in helping brands preserve a positive ad experience.”

In conclusion, experts agree that the Indian market presents a significant opportunity for advertisers and publishers to reach a large and engaged audience base through FAST and Freemium. By adopting a data-driven approach, using new ad formats, programmatic advertising, data analytics, and content marketing, they can create more effective ad campaigns, engage viewers, and increase their revenue.


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Mark Zuckerberg announces new WhatsApp app for Windows

The app will enable group video calls with up to 8 people and audio calls with up to 32 people

By exchange4media Staff | Mar 23, 2023 3:25 PM   |   1 min read


Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg has announced a new WhatsApp app for Windows, which will enable group video calls with up to 8 people and audio calls with up to 32 people - all from your desktop.

Making the announceemnt on Facebook, he wrote, “Launching a new WhatsApp desktop app for Windows. Now you can make E2E encrypted video calls with up to 8 people and audio calls with up to 32 people.”

“The new Windows desktop app loads faster and is built with an interface familiar to WhatsApp and Windows users. You can host group video calls with up to 8 people and audio calls with up to 32 people. We’ll continue to increase these limits over time so you can always stay connected with friends, family and work colleagues.

Since introducing new multi-device capabilities, we’ve listened to feedback and made improvements including faster device linking and better syncing across devices, as well as new features such as link previews and stickers.

As we continue to increase the number of devices which support WhatsApp, we’ve just introduced a new WhatsApp beta experience for Android tablets. We’re also launching a new, faster app for Mac desktops that is currently in the early stages of beta,” he wrote further.

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MarTech can brilliantly answer the ROI question: Hareesh Tibrewala

The Joint CEO of Mirum India spoke to e4m Editor Naziya Alvi Rahman on a host of questions with respect to the India MarTech Report 2023 that will be unveiled at the e4m Pitch CMO Summit today

By Naziya Alvi Rahman | Mar 23, 2023 2:41 PM   |   1 min read


Hareesh Tibrewala spoke to e4m on a host of issues related to MarTech while delving deep into the India MarTech Report. He started by addressing the roadblocks in the implementation of MarTech in the country.

He also explained the point about MarTech explorers in terms of the sectors, which is invested in this marketing technique.

Tibrewala further spoke about how martech was critical in the role of a marketer and how it could be extremely significant for calculating ROI.

The conversation also veered toward the importance of MarTech in the cookie-less world and the advent of Web3.

Watch the entire conversation here.

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Google opens up access to Bard

In a blogpost, Google said that Bard could provide tips or explain several posts

By exchange4media Staff | Mar 23, 2023 1:07 PM   |   1 min read


Google has said that it is opening up access to Bard, the ChatGPT competitor, as per media reports.

The tech major will be expanding the access to Bard in more countries and languages.

In a blogpost, Google said that Bard could provide tips or explain several posts.

Google unveiled Bard in February. Alphabet CEO Sundar Pichai announced the soft launch of the AI to "trusted testers". 

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MarTech no longer only about marketing, it needs to drive sales: Mirum India report

The survey for the report shows 88% of respondents expect to increase spending on MarTech over the next 3 years

By exchange4media Staff | Mar 23, 2023 12:43 PM   |   2 min read


Mirum India, a Wunderman Thompson company, has put together a report on the emerging MarTech landscape in India.

The report captures how MarTech solutions are being utilized by brands to effectively communicate their brand messages to the right set of audiences at the right time.

The report highlights that while the global spend on MarTech solutions is around 25% of the total marketing budget, in India, majority organizations spend less than 15%, indicating significant potential for growth. With MarTech spending set to increase across company sizes and sectors, 88% of respondents expect to increase their MarTech spending over the next three years. The report also emphasizes the need for brands and organizations to work with growth partners as preferred by MarTech HEROES, focusing on ROI, and delivering value to the brands.

The report will be unveiled on March 24, 2023, at the e4m Pitch CMO Summit in Mumbai. The summit will see India's most reputed brands and top management coming under one roof to interact and share insights on their game-changing success stories.

Speaking on the report, Hareesh Tibrewala, Joint CEO – Mirum India, said, "The estimated size of the MarTech industry in India is expected to be between $35bn and $50bn by 2026, presenting a sizeable opportunity for businesses. Our latest report highlights how brands are using MarTech solutions to effectively deliver the right brand message to the right customer at the right time, creating fabulous customer experiences and increasing brand loyalty. It is interesting to note that marketers globally spend 25% of their budgets on MarTech solutions, and our report shows the emergence of MarTech EXPLORERS, who are keen to leverage the power of MarTech. This presents an exciting opportunity for businesses to grow and thrive in the ever-evolving digital landscape."

CVL Srinivas, Country Manager – WPP India said, "To succeed in the rapidly evolving tech and data driven world, organizations need good marketing automation tools and diverse skill sets. The report highlights the need for growth partners, preferred by MarTech HEROES, to ensure strong ROI for clients. It brings clarity to the ecosystem and presents an exciting opportunity for businesses to create fantastic customer experiences and increase brand loyalty. At WPP, we've invested heavily in building our tech and data practices, creating a comprehensive ecosystem where value is delivered at every touchpoint."

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Why contextual advertising is making a comeback

As part of e4m TechTalk, Dimpy Yadav, General Manager - Xaxis India, writes contextual advertising is re-emerging for delivering relevant & targeted messages to India’s audiences

By Dimpy Yadav | Mar 23, 2023 9:18 AM   |   4 min read


For years, contextual advertising has taken a back seat in favour of hyper-personalised behavioural targeting. But with tightening regulations and deepening concerns around data privacy, contextual advertising is reasserting its place within India’s marketing ecosystem. And it’s about time too.

Contextual advertisement placement is a proven marketing strategy that dates back to the very origins of the modern industry. In today’s digitised world, this tactic involves showing ads that are directly relevant to the content that a user is viewing or even to the user themselves. They can align contextually with anything from a web page to a geographic location or even the weather.

So why is contextual advertising making a comeback in India in 2023? And how can the nation’s marketers and agencies rise to this new digital challenge?

The right context

It’s been seven years since the Indian government launched its digital India campaign and the nation’s digital economy has grown at a phenomenal rate – 2.4 times faster than the overall economy between 2014 and 2019.

Meanwhile, smartphones have become more affordable, internet infrastructure has expanded, and data has become significantly cheaper. Since the outbreak of COVID-19, the adoption of digital interactions has accelerated even further, with food deliveries, telemedicine, and online gaming surging in first-time usage.

For marketers, digital and mobile media have become more accessible and cost-effective mediums. This year, advertising spending on mobile is expected to comprise 78 per cent of India’s total digital media expenditure. According to eMarketer, mobile ad spending in India grew YoY by 35.9 per cent in 2021 and is forecasted to grow by 28.4 per cent in 2022

India’s digital explosion comes amid a tectonic shift away from the third-party data collection that marketers have relied on for years. Consumers have become more cautious about the data they share online while global regulations around data collection like the European Union’s General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) have constrained brands’ unfettered access to personal data. In this climate, contextual advertising, which leverages the content of the environment instead of the personal data of its visitors, serves as a privacy-friendly alternative.

A loyal audience

One of the key criticisms of social media over recent years is the potential to miss or misuse key contextual information. Although social media gives brands access to massive audiences, campaigns can easily fall flat if they aren’t executed in just the right context. Even the best creative cannot drive engagement when it appears in an irrelevant or inappropriate environment.

But that dependence on its environment is also one of contextual advertising’s greatest strengths. When utilized in partnership with established publications, it capitalizes on the built-in trust and loyalty that those outlets already enjoy with their audiences. When a receptive audience is combined with the modern capabilities of global scale, digital precision, and algorithmic efficiency, the results can be powerful.

Trust in context

Improvements in targeting capabilities and data analysis have also made it possible for advertisers to target audiences through keywords and topics as well as demographics and interests. Marketers can meanwhile be selective about the types of content they want their ads to run alongside, reserving their investments for audiences that are more likely to take an interest in their products and, therefore, more likely to engage with them. For these reasons, they can feel confident that their content will be well received and their investments will be profitable.

Still, marketing based on context may be a difficult transition for industry leaders who are more familiar and comfortable with behavioural targeting. But it’s hard to argue that the shift towards a contextual mindset will be anything short of necessary and more than likely fruitful. Recent research by Integral Ad Science (IAS) revealed that Indian consumers are more likely to positively receive and remember contextually relevant ads.

Last but not least, contextual advertising will aid marketers in the desired outcome from their campaign. According to a study conducted by IAS and personal computer manufacturer HP, purchase intent was 14 per cent higher among consumers who viewed the in-context ad. In addition, consumers reported a 5 per cent increase in positivity toward the HP brand after seeing an in-context ad

As third-party personal data is becoming less accessible, contextual advertising is growing more sophisticated, giving marketers the power to meet receptive audiences with relevant content. That’s a fundamentally sound path to success that benefits both brands and consumers alike.

Most significantly of all, it has the potential to transform digital media investments into real-world business outcomes. Although the value of premium publishing has always existed, marketers are now able to prove its success with clarity and maximum return on expenditure.

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Brands can be the real winners as gaming firms hit the jackpot with innovative games

Indian gaming firms received $1.4 billion investment over the past five years. This opens up huge opportunities for advertisers

By Kanchan Srivastava | Mar 23, 2023 8:55 AM   |   4 min read


The Indian gaming ecosystem, which boasts of more than 1,100 startups and a 40 crore-strong gaming communities, is thriving like never before.  With their unique offerings such as NFT-based games, fantasy sports, real-money games and cash prizes, home-grown firms have gained popularity across the globe. Over 86 Indian firms have received $1.4 billion investment over the past five years, including two unicorns and seven soonicorns, according to a latest report of the research firm Tracxn. 

Globally, gaming firms received $20.4B funds over the past five years. Of this, India’s share is roughly 6.8%. The United States (42.2%) Chinese (18.3%) firms got the lion’s share. 

Fantasy sports platform MPL ($150 million), which is a unicorn, is among top 10 funded companies globally over the last 2 years. Games24x7, another Unicorn from India, also received $75 million. 

Soonicorns like Zupee ($72 M), WinZO ($65 M), Hike (NFT gaming, $261 M), JetSynthesys, Octro, EloElo and Games2win also bagged the jackpot. Even four early stage startups-Bombay Play, One World Nation, Studio Sirah, Awon Gamez-have also managed to win their first rounds of funding over the last year. 

Even as the cryptocurrency sector across the world tanked, Venture capitalists have shown keen interests in Indian Web3 gaming startups that offer play-to-earn (P2E) entertainment and use crypto coins and NFTs for transactions. Companies with blockchain-based offerings pocketed $620 mn in 2022. Gurugram-based Rario, Bengaluru-based Lysto.io and Delhi-based Hike are among them, Tracxn data says. Hike pivoted from instant messaging to social, gaming, and crypto in 2021 only. 

“Indian gaming companies have been building local products with capabilities to cater to mobile-gaming markets across the world. Gaming as a category has shown itself to be driven by a highly monetizable audience base: one that tends to spend a lot of time on content and online engagement, is likely to be a trend-setter, has the propensity to spend and is often the chief purchase influencer in his/her family and friend circle,” opines Piyush Kumar, Founder & CEO, Rooter - Gaming and Esports Content platform. 

He further noted, “Indian gaming startups have been quick to encash this opportunity. Gaming content platforms like ours are building scalable, tech-driven, revenue-generating models that have garnered interest from marquee global investors.”

According to Rohit Agarwal, Founder & Director, Alpha Zegus,

“Since gaming is an industry that is completely digitally led, there is an almost infinite reserve of digital content that can be converted into NFTs. Also, the gaming audience is more tech-driven and understands the concept of NFT quite easily. These two factors give the NFT-based gaming industry a big advantage.”

Karan Taurani, senior VP of Elara Capital, echoes the sentiments.  “Indian gaming companies have quickly realized the shift of casual gamers towards real-money games. Web3 gaming is a far more sustainable ecosystem for both players and gaming companies and hence there are huge growth opportunities. Investors know this fact.”

Big opportunity for brands 

Such overwhelming investment in the Indian gaming startups opens up a huge opportunity for advertisers. Most of the gamers are young and have a significant purchasing power. 

The Indian online gaming industry is estimated to grow to more than Rs 15,000 crore in 2023, representing a CAGR of nearly 22%,  as per the latest 'India Online Gaming Report' of GroupM. 

“Most of the potential of this platform is still unutilised”, an advertising executive said. He added, “Gaming platforms offer tremendous scope such as in-app advertising, brand integration, rewards and advergaming. Brands can also reach their target audience through communities, e-sport tournaments, team associations, NFTs and influencers.”

The in-game advertising market globally is estimated to grow at a CAGR of 7% to reach about US$220 billion by 2027, almost two-fold compared to 2020, according to a report of Research and Markets.


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