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VBS 2018: Media & entertainment industry leaders address pressing issues on Day 1

For more insights stay tuned for the updates from the second day of VBS

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GOA: Rapid advance in technology and infrastructure, entry of disruptive forces and changes in consumption habits have led the Indian media and entertainment industry to major conversion. The interesting developments are attracting international players to invest in the market, with traditional domestic players adopting new strategies for growth. Where the industry is heading in the next few years is something everyone wants to know.

To seek answers for several concerning questions, Indiantelevision.com brought together industry doyens on the first day of the Video and Broadband Summit. The conference dedicated to industry issues has been supported by esteemed broadcasters, technology companies as well industry bodies. All the speakers agreed that the VBS platform is the perfect stage to discuss relevant issues as well as to gain new insights while sharing their experience.

Indiantelevision.com founder and CEO Anil Wanvari set the tone for the day with his welcome speech. He spoke about how demonetisation and GST put pressure on business in last couple of years. He also highlighted how the burgeoning OTT industry is throwing new challenges to traditional TV, cable and DTH operators along with the new tariff order that is likely to reshape the trajectory of the sector. He also added how a disruptive force like Jio FTTH is fueling the transformation.

The first session moderated by Anil Wanvari was about the future of digital delivery platforms where Tata Sky chief content officer Arun Unni, PwC India partner Raman Kalra and One Take Media founder and CEO Anil Khera participated. As the influence of video and broadband has become unmistakable now, Tata Sky recently rolled out a broadband service. While he was asked about how it stands out, Unni said customer centric nature of the business makes their service different. While broadband and telco players are throwing a challenge for distribution, Khera thinks India still has potential for DTH and cable growth owing to almost  90 mn households still unpenetrated by TV. Kalra said while pay-TV and OTT platforms will stay together, there will be a constant battle among players to stay relevant to consumers with proper content.

In a fireside chat with Anil Wanvari, COAI director general Rajan Mathews spoke about various issues in the telecom industry. He said consumer choices are changing rapidly today, hence the model which is working at present, may get disrupted in future. He also spoke about the high cost of utilizing satellites in the country despite them being produced and launched at very low cost. Talking about 5G, he said it will take a while to be rolled out and added that it would be focusing on education, health, traffic management, smart cities and agriculture.

Anil Khera who has now ventured into the value-added service space after spending considerable time in the DTH industry, explained the importance of this vertical and how DTH players are utilizing it.

Another engaging session where audience also took an active part in the discussion, was about monetising TV in times of transition. ZEEL chief growth officer Ashish Sehgal, KMPG India media and entertainment partner and head  Girish Menon and TAM India CEO LV Krishnan spoke on the issue. “Only thing TV can't do is engagement which digital platforms allow but you cannot build your brand without TV,” Sehgal made a very important comment.

The eventful day ended with a fireside chat between Viacom18 COO Raj Nayak and Anil Wanvari. Nayak shared glimpses of his inspirational journey in the industry and Viacom18 where he was the brainchild of several successful endeavors. Talking about the future, he said it will belong to those who can create content which is compelling. Moreover, he also said content cost is not going down but it's going up across broadcasters. Giving the example of Netflix’s change of fortune with House of Cards, he added that for changing the trajectory of the business, delivering two-three golden nuggets every year are enough.

For more insights stay tuned for the updates from the second day of video and broadband summit 2018!

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