Digital graphic story telling startup Graphic India has raised funding of $5 million from investors at its parent Liquid Comics, and other investors including Start Media, 3One4 Capital, Backflip Studios’s co-founder Julian Farrior, and Zodius Capital‘s founder Neeraj Bhargava.
The Bangalore-based company creates digital graphic characters and comics which represents India, such as mythic heroes, bollywood heroes like Baahubali, and Amitabh Bacchan amongst others. The startup will use the fresh capital to launch graphic characters for international markets as well and will expand its business with original mobile content, TV/film distribution and virtual reality content.
Liquid Comics, previously known as Virgin Comics, had launched Graphic India in 2011 as its new digital platform to promote comic books and showcase young artists and writers in India. Graphic India is currently producing animation on TV and digital platforms with partners including Disney, Amazon Prime Video, Cartoon Network, Rovio, Viacom18 and others. The company previously raised funding of $2.8 million in March 2015, to develop its comics and superheroes characters that are Indian.
It says on its website that, “in the same way that America created superheroes and Japan created anime, Graphic India is tapping into the creativity of India to launch a new wave of enduring characters and mythic heroes to captivate the imaginations of youths in India and around the world.”
Shashi adds: Liquid Comics had started off with immense promise but has not been able to attract mainstream appeal as Marvel and DC Comics’ characters. It published comic books such as Devi, created by Shekhar Kapur and actress Priyanka Chopra serving as the model for the character.
Ramayan 3392 AD was a reimagination of the epic in a post-apocalyptic world in the future. Meanwhile, they also roped in legendary comic book writer Grant Morrisson to create 18 Days, a retelling of the Mahabharata.
The Sadhu was created by Gotham Chopra and was set in Bengal following the great Bengal famine and the beginning of the freedom struggle follows the adventures of British soldier by the name of James Jensen. The Sadhu was slated to be adapted for a movie in 2014.
As such, Liquid Comics and Graphic India does have a roster of very compelling characters which could rival Marvel and DC’s characters (I love Batman, but there have been just too many movies of the caped crusader). Graphic India should certainly pitch more of its characters to streaming services such as Netflix and Amazon Prime Video.