YouTube multi-channel network #fame (earlier Famebox Networks), has launched a new Hollywood centric channel called #fame Hollywood. This channel will feature content around celebrities, news scoops and scandals from Hollywood. The platform mentions it will publish ‘numerous’ topical stories everyday.
Note that #fame had raised $10 million in its second round of funding from TO THE NEW Ventures (TTN Ventures), in January this year. The startup had said then it would use the funds to scale up its digital video business, invest in emerging talent, invest in new technology and expand to other countries in Asia. Besides India, the platform plans to expand to six key markets in South-east Asia, including Indonesia, Singapore, Thailand, Malaysia and Philippines. It had previously raised $3 million in funding from TTN Ventures, back when it began operations in beta in early 2014.
The company claims that it currently produces more than 150 videos a month, which it plans to ramp up to over 1,000 original videos monthly from 500 content creators, in the next few months. It is currently active on several digital and social platforms including YouTube, Facebook, WeChat, Dailymotion and other content publishers.
#fame YouTube channels:
Over the past year, Fame has launched several web series across various categories like fashion, music, comedy and food segments. Some of them include:
– A show called ‘Hi Tea’ with chef Ajay Chopra, in partnership with the TV channel FoodFood just last month. The show includes different special episodes/segments featuring different #fame talent as guests on the show.
– A tech vertical called #fametech, which aims to be a digital video destination for personal tech content.
– An online stylist hunt called School of Style hosted by Karan Johar.
– Food-oriented web series like Some Like It Hot & WebChef, which is an online talent hunt of amateur chefs.
– A fitness oriented YouTube channel about running hosted by Milind Soman, which was launched in August last year.
– A cricket oriented YouTube series called Out of the box with sports commentator Harsha Bhogle.
Besides this, it also has tie-ups with celebrities like TV star Maria Goretti, child comic star Saloni, celebrity chef Ajay Chopra, and singer Shibani Kashyap among others to develop web series & YouTube channels featuring them.
CAA Kwan partnership:
#fame had also partnered celebrity management firm CAA Kwan in November last year, to co-create digital video content & communities around some of the top Indian celebrity talents. CAA Kwan represents celebrities like Ranbir Kapoor, Deepika Padukone, Farhan Akhtar, Shahid Kapoor, Sonakshi Sinha, Shraddha Kapoor, Jacqueline Fernandez, Yo Yo Honey Singh, and Boman Irani among others.
The YouTube MCN market is still quite nascent in India, although it seems to be picking up. Disney owned Maker Studios, possibly one of the largest YouTube MCNs worldwide, entered India by signing up Indian YouTube channels like All India Bakchod, East India Comedy and Kanan Gill among others, while another large YouTube MCN FullScreen partnered Qyuki to expand into India.
– Earlier in January, Rajshri Entertainment had launched a Marathi food channel called Ruchkar Mejwani across multiple digital platforms including YouTube, Digivive, DailyMotion and VuClip among others.
– The same month, Ping Digital, another YouTube MCN had raised an undisclosed amount in funding from a consortium of angel investors headed by Monisha Advani, co-founder of Hindi film production house Emmay Entertainment.
– The following month, Digital video network Culture Machine raised $18 million in a series B round of funding from Tiger Global Management and existing investors Times Internet and Zodius Capital