GudSho CEO Sriram Manoharan: Starting an OTT platform is technically intensive and expensive
The CEO of Tamil cinema's latest OTT platform, GudSho, talks about how their platform is different from the giants
A study shows that India’s 260 million active OTT users are set to increase to 500 million in less than two years. This rapid increase in subscriber base has resulted in many new OTT players entering the fray, the latest among them, GudSho, launched by a company that has previously helped put systems in place for many other popular OTT platforms. Founder and CEO Sriram Manoharan hopes to be kinder to content, as he believes that other platforms don’t accept all content that comes their way. “In fact, they accept only around 2-3 films for every 100 films they get, and this is often decided by celebrity value and production cost. We, however, want to be an open platform for all good content creators. Where other platforms focus on global and North Indian content, we will focus on the South and fill that gap." The platform will also be premiering original Tamil content. "We already have one series and more will be out soon. We are also zeroing on a couple of good films that will be out exclusively on this platform.”
Sriram also runs a software company called CONTUS and one of their flagship products is an open platform through which they have hosted several OTT platforms. The pandemic and the digital opportunities that have come along with it, seems to have played a part in the company coming up with its own OTT platform. “Only a well-funded corporation can start such a platform as it's a technically intensive product and departments like content creation, acquisition, and marketing are expensive."
The platform will also have the pay-per-view model option. “We have studios for different players on our site and the audience can have the freedom to pick what they want to see. We leave it to the studios to decide whether they want to go pay-per-view or go with a subscription model. There are 400 Tamil channels and not all of them can afford to have their own platform. We are in talks with major players to bring in more studios that would increase our library size."
Sriram believes that the major players have neglected content for the tier 2 and 3 cities for whom, he says, there is no relatable content. "We know that there's a huge market there that would appreciate good technology and content. We hope to come up with a big announcement," concludes Sriram, who shares that the platform has one lakh active members now and hopes to increase it manifold during the next year.