Sony's Uday Sodhi upbeat about VoD platform Liv Sports

MUMBAI: Multi Screen Media’s (MSM) sports Video On Demand (VOD) platform Liv Sports is set to take audiences to a whole new frontier. Liv Sports is a VOD service that offers sports content from Sony Entertainment Network.

India now has 300 million internet users, up from 200 million a year ago, with a little more than 50 per cent having access to mobile Internet, which makes India a big market for online content consumption.

With the on-going Cricket World Cup, various VOD platforms are coming up with innovative shows to build interest. Speaking about Liv Sports’ plan for the World Cup, Sony Entertainment Network executive vice-president and head digital Uday Sodhi tells, “We are in the process of packaging and will release them in phases. Our exclusive package will include articles from journalists, news coverage, and result analysis through innovative graphics and text.”

Commenting on the catalog of Liv Sports Sodhi says, “We have streamed Australian Open live and reached more than a million viewers. We are also streaming Indian School and College Basketball League, which is not aired on television. Moreover, we also streamed Syed Modi International Badminton Grand Prix. We are moving ahead and will invade into new territory whenever we get an opportunity.”

Responding to the marketing strategy to popularise the portal, Sodhi asserts, “As of now there is no such campaign coming out, we are promoting the portal on our network. But soon when there is an opportunity we will opt for aggressive advertising.”

Though digital platform is growing with time there is no clear revenue model for the portals. When quizzed about the revenue model of the digital platform, Sodhi says, “Advertisers are showing significant interest on the digital platform, and the fact that it is the fastest growing media, I think good content will rope in big endorsements. There will be creative banners, pre-rolls, exit rolls and also in the middle of the event there may be banners. There is always a room from creative innovations to grab attention.”

“Television is a medium to consume content at home and that will continue to grow. We are seeing modern infrastructure like 4k and HD on TV. Digital platform is for consumption of content on the go and that will grow independently. Both may be a medium of communication but individually different in their mode of operation,” says Sodhi, when asked about digital media’s impact on television.

“We are a six to eight months old venture and we aspire to be the digital destination of quality sports. With digital platforms we can reach to new audiences and that is a good sign. Bandwidth will increase and more and more people will use internet on their mobile, which increases our possibility of growing bigger. And the main factor is time spent in front of screen. We don’t expect people to sit and watch TV full time so more screens are essential and digital is one of them,” he concludes.

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