MUMBAI: The Hispanic population has always been associated with entertainment and merrymaking. Much of the Spanish-speaking areas are also big television addicts. Given that Spanish is the second most widely spoken languages of the world, there is also a bustling TV market that caters to the vast Spanish regions.
That doesn’t deter them from experimenting with newer content. Hispanics have also been bitten by the Bollywood bug due to its affinity for fun and frolic in several of its movies. Catering to this demand is Zee Entertainment Enterprises Limited (ZEEL) channel Zee Mundo. Launched in September 2016 for the Hispanic market in the US and then for the Latin American market in 2017, it is the first pay-TV channel that shows Bollywood entirely dubbed in Spanish with over 200 movies on display and two series.
It recently underwent a revamp of its website to include a video-on-demand (VOD) catalogue.
Hispanics are among the fastest-growing ethnic groups in the US and are the country’s youngest demographic, with a median age nearly a decade younger than the population at large. There are 11 million Hispanic pay subscribers in the US.
The popularity of the platform is covering 12 countries. ZEEL content business evangelist & president strategy - international business Rajeev Kheror says, “Zee Mundo has 3 million subscribers in the Americas including Mexico, Central America, Colombia, Peru, Chile and US Hispanic. It will be launching in Argentina soon. The Facebook fan following is more than 400k with a total reach of 7MM. Furthermore, the launch of its website carrying exclusive content has doubled its page views three months after it launched.”
Adding to this, ZEEL head of business, US Hispanic & Latin America Javier Lopez Casella says, “The website zeemundo.com is the first to exhibit movies in streaming. We have 3MM subs in 12 countries, launching soon in Colombia, Chile and Argentina. Within 3 months of the launch, we have 300k page viewers.”
ZEE Mundo has access to the entire library of Zee movies and series and plans to premiere two top recent Bollywood movie hits per month exclusively dubbed in Spanish and in HD. To add on, Kheror says that it has launched a new property named Zee Mundo Specials including breathtaking Bollywood show business, red carpet, facts of celebrity life, award events and concerts.
“Zee Mundo has 100 per cent of rights for all digital platforms: catch up, VOD, OTT and TV everywhere. It is unique in the market, second window of Bollywood and has content that has never seen in Spanish in Pay,” added Casella.
Both romance and action movies are the most watched as well as the internationally awarded epic stories like Jodha Akbar. However, the most interesting fact is that Spaniards are in love with Shah Rukh Khan. “Shah Rukh Khan leads the list of talent favoured by all Spanish-speaking Americas followed by top talents such as Aishwarya Rai, Deepika Padukone, Ashkay Kumar and Kareena Kapoor,” shares Kheror.
The expansion for Mundo in the Americas consists of spreading awareness among the consumers to know about the latest of Bollywood content and celebrities through local media in key markets, movie bloggers and influencers. Kheror adds that they will be generating engagement involving the consumer (Bollywood dance contest, become a Bollywood movie critic), educating the consumer of similarities between the Bollywood culture and Latin Americas through ZEEMILITUDES (Zeemilarities in English) campaign, by launching ‘positive acceptance campaign’ of the Spanish word Si (yes) = Zee, by promoting and showcasing celebrity and off-air content via zeemundo.com, partnering with local sites to generate brand and channel awareness and by participating in Bollywood-driven (for example dance and movie showings) and Indian influenced (Holi, the festival of colors) programmes.”
In the content bouquet of Zee Mundo, movies and shows of different genres like romance, drama, action, comedy, suspense, thriller and more are available. Surprisingly, Zee Mundo has a classic collection of both old and new Bollywood movies including Badlapur, NH10, Don, Shamitabh, Chennai Express, Laksh, Khoobsurat, Naach, Main Prem ki Deewani Hoon, Vivah, Mausam and many more.
Last year, a notable exception was the Spanish-language Netflix series Narcos that went raging through the world. Many critics and fans appear to have embraced the Spanish stars speaking in their own language instead of English.