Muvizz.com In Talks to Raise $3-5M for Operational Expenses & Content Creation
Muvizz plans to continuously build its library of films across languages and genres so that it be a one stop to watch world cinema- cinema that matters!
Muvizz.com is an Over The Top (OTT) or Video On Demand (VOD) platform offering cult, classic and independent films to cinema lovers around the world.
It offers only a curated list of titles ranging from short films to documentaries to feature films in various languages to its users so that they don’t have to go through thousands of titles to decide which one to watch.
Every week a selected number of titles are released on the platform. The platform will soon start releasing one title a day in future with specific days reserved for Hindi features, non-features like documentaries and shorts, regional cinema and foreign language film. Muvizz plans to continuously build its library of films across languages and genres so that it be a one stop to watch world cinema- cinema that matters!
Edited Excerpts from an interview with Abhayanad Singh, Co-Founder of Muvizz.com
How was it started?
Being an avid movie lover, entrepreneur Mr. Abhayanand Singh came across a problem, he was unable to watch his much awaited “Gangs of Wasseypur” in Singapore. He knew this problem was not only faced by him, but by Indians all across the globe and he had to come up with a solution.
That’s when the idea of movies on demand struck him, he knew that this would not only solve the release issues, but also would be a platform where movie fans like him and many more could relive their favorite cults classic again and again. He jointly founded Muvizz with Piiyush Singh who heads the Indian Operations in January 2015. Bollywood actor Manoj Bajpayee is the brand ambassador of Muvizz and has been associated with the brand since its inception.
What are your unique key features you are offering?
The whole idea is to create a social community of Cinephiles where movies are used as a medium for discussion and debates on its platform. They have “The Critics Corner” wherein viewers can express themselves about the film and also have the option to like and comment as well. Users can create their profiles on Muvizz and they can follow other users similar to popular social media channels which make the content discovery process easier. There is a section called “The Diary” wherein people discuss about social issues using cinema.
How is it difference from existing players from the market?
We think we are the only platform that attempts to offer an experiential platform as against all others that offers a transactional platform. The elements of curation of world cinema and social make us different from everyone else.
Tell us about funding status currently?
Muvizz received angel funding of Rs. 2.2 crores ($350000) from Singapore based investors on October 2015. It is currently in the process of raising USD 3 to 5 million for basic operational expenses as well as creation of original content.
What is the monetization model you are using existingly?
Muvizz.com’s business model is dependent on the number of subscriptions.
What are your traction details as of now?
Muvizz has access to more than 12 million users due to the past success of some original content produced. It is also increasing it catalogue of content by acquiring a lot of world cinema and has already identified 500 such titles. The users will soon have access to the platform using Apple TV, Roku and Samsung smart TV in addition to the existing android and IOS app currently.
What are your future plans for this startup?
We have our very own film festival coming up called Singapore South Asian International Film Festival (SGSAIFF). We also have plans to collaborate with critically acclaimed actors and directors to write blogs for Muvizz.com.
What kind of marketing efforts have you put in?
We have presence on various social media channels through which we conduct our digital marketing. We intend to drive a lot of campaigns in the coming few months like “Be a critic” and various other such ATL and BTL activities.
What kind of challenges you faced initially while setting up this platform?
Piracy remains the biggest challenge for platforms in general. Also, this whole space is in its nascent stage and therefore discovery of new monetization models remain a continuous challenge.
What kind of market size & opportunity are you eyeing?
There are some 300 million smart phone users in India and online video streaming is expected to be a $300 million market currently but growing in double digits month on month. In fact, the industry is now entering a stage wherein it will witness staggering growth due to external factors like the reducing data cost etc. The real opportunity therefore lies in the ability of a platform to identify correctly what the users want to watch. We must not forget that technology is the foundation of this content business.
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