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Uday Shankar, Mukesh Ambani set the tone for FICCI FRAMES

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MUMBAI: For a meet that is perhaps the largest in the country covering all all media and entertainment platforms, it was heartening to see the the universe of M & E industry gthered under one roof.

FICCI Frames 2016 is up and rolling. ‘Change or Perish’ says the LED backdrop and that’s the theme of the 17th edition.

And Communication and Information Technology Minister Ravi Shankar Prasad, Star India CEO Uday Shankar, Reliance Industries Ltd Chairman and MD Mukesh Ambani FICCI Entertainment wing Chairman Ramesh Sippy, Discovery President J B Perrete, and FICCI Secretary General Deedar Singh showed the way forward.  

Star India CEO Uday Shankar, FICCI Chairman Ramesh Sippy, Minister of Telecom and Information Teachnology, Discovery President JB Perrete, and  Deedar Singh secretary general FICCI were among the dignataries who lit the lamp to mark the beginning of the edition.

“Cable TV continues to struggle, struggling to be relevant in the ever changing scenario. Digitization is still to taste success; and the content is becoming more and more redundant. Overall the M&E sector is the same as it was while the timelines have changed and changed again,”

Those opening lines by Star India CEO Uday Shankar touched many raw nerves, welcomes by loud claps at the inaugural session of the FICCI FRAMES 2016.

But he added that even as there are certain teething issues that the industry is facing, there are great happenings to talk about too. In his un-orthodox manner, he touched on these. “But at the same time there is a disruption happening, there are four young boys who made more headlines than any other content creators. They took on the biggest of the players be it Mark Zukkerberg’s Facebook when their friendly internet’s neutrality came under threat. They had the guts to keep a name that the news channels in India chose not to pronounce wholly. They call them AIB.”

Uday Shankar Mukesh Ambani and Shri Ravishankar Prasad at Ficci Frames 2016

Talking about his own network, he said “the biggest launch in the media and entertainment industry was not a newspaper, nor a TV channel  but an app. Hotstar drove the wave, 5crore times the app was downloaded, more people watched EPL on Hotstar than on TV and this is how India is changing.”

He also spoke about the global success story: “Imagine where Netflix Facebook were 10 years back and see the empire they have made in such a short span. Also remember the best animators are no longer sitting in California, they can now be spotted in Goregaon. Priyanka Chopra is now a global star and now India needs to be a global leader.”

Concluding his remarks, he said: “The whole country today is looking at what Mukesh Ambani is busy with, there is a wave of expectation and the expectation is from Ravi Shankar Prasad (C and IT Minister) too. They are the two stakeholders on whom the digital wave depends. Hope they do the best as that will be the best of media and the entertainment Industry.”

Reliance Industries  Chairman and MD Mukesh Ambani said: “I was here in 2004 when the industry was 2 billion dollars strong, and today it is 18 billion dollars strong. It is a great success and but there are miles to go. I believe the industry will be a 100 billion dollar one in the next decade, which means we have a major task in our hands.”

Referring to the theme of the annual meet, he said: “There could not be a better theme than Change or Perish. To my mind digitization is the key to the industry’s success and that’s why we have JIO which can be called as the world’s largest startup.”

He was confident that with the launch of Jio, India will be among the top ten in the next few years from the current rank of 155 among the top countries using mobile data. “Jio will provide coverage, and wherever you are you will be able to access. Quality will be 40 to 80 times faster than at present. Quantity and capacity currently is 0.15 GB per annum, with capacity of over 10 GB per user per annum  We will be affordable to consumers, and I believe affordability is the key “

India, he said, will leapfrog and be a leader in the digital world. The world is moving from "orality to visuality. Images and videos will rule the digital world. Human beings and our thinking are linear.  Technology is an exponential idea. Exponential changes will create large opportunities," he said.

Sharing his analysis he said, “The world is graduating to a telemedia world. The focus will be on all from all. The telco will focus on content, the broadcaster will invest on technology and producers will have  new delivery platforms. We are all part of a telemedia world. Downloading has now become streaming, linear has become interactive.”

Ambani drew light on the way forward. “Abundance will be a global trend. Data is the new oil of this industry, and intelligent data is the petrol. It is not about technology – it is about humanity, the true power of technology is in the evolution of humanity. All our efforts need to be to make India the leader in 21st century. Together we can make India the leader with more than one-sixth of humanity residing in India.”

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