American media studio Relativity Media has formed a joint venture with Indian TV channel B4U to launch digital streaming service, distribute local films and even produce them, reports Mint. The joint venture will be headed by B4U chief executive Ishan Saksena and will be overseen by a Board of Directors, to which both companies will appoint two directors. Terms of the deal were not disclosed, but the joint venture will have an investment of approximately $100 million available for projects.
The company plans to set up a digital streaming technology platform called RelaTV in India. The platform will focus on delivering short and long length video content to viewers in India. Relativity has not clarified if this will only be for movies made or distributed by the company, or for other content as well. There are several Indian movie streaming services in India already like Google’s YouTube, Spuul, Reliance Group’s BigFlix, Times Internet’s BoxTV, Eros International’s Eros Now and Hungama Movies. Even in that list only YouTube has managed to become extremely popular, so it’s not clear how RelaTV will break through.
As of now, Relativity Media has digital properties such as entertainment website IAmRogue, its YouTube channel, music artist website ArtistDirect and several other YouTube channels under the name RogueMovieNetwork. Relativity offers content and brand syndication opportunities to channels that are part of RogueMovieNetwork. It also provides access to design and technology team, and advertising campaigns. Relativity will monetize the video’s ad inventory and also work on increasing premium ad pipeline. The company claims the network has access to 6 million unique visitors every month.
– The joint venture will also distribute and market films by Relativity in India, Pakistan, Sri Lanka, Bangladesh, Nepal and Bhutan, starting with the romantic drama The Best of Me in October, that will be co-produced by this joint venture.
– Relativity plans to start shooting Indian version of its movies simultaneously with the American one.
– As part of the JV, Relativity will release a few Bollywood movies in the US.
– Distribute third-party content in India.
– The duo will create a new pay television channel in India focused on Hollywood content in both English and Hindi.