Indian Content: Occupying the centre stage

If Indian content industry is able to maintain its rate of expansion, it would not be wrong to expect that in a few years, the focus may soon shift to what India wants to see and also what it wants the world to see, says Ajay Mago, Publisher, Om Books International.

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Having attended several international book fairs over the past two decades and observing the increase in the number of visitors/participants from India confirms the fact that the demand for content from India has grown tremendously.

Each year publishers work with their Teams to develop the content throughout the year and target to sell the same to their customers overseas. Several contracts for Translation rights are carried on in the international book fairs along with orders for co-editions.Simultaneous to that lots of new staff is getting trained up for editorial jobs, Illustrated content development and creativity.

Popularity of Indian content…

Indian publishing is the key enabler for education attainment, continuous learning, and recreation, a promoter of Indian culture, values and excellence.Considering the key stakeholders in the publishing industry, India is dominated by educational book publishing with a small share of trade book publishing but it is remarkable to see the book exports for trade books growing tremendously.

What’s trending…

India is a land of storytellers but for a very long time, there was no representation of all kinds of stories. Stories that were not picked up earlier, subjects that were ignored or avoided, now there is a space for them.

The emergence of the OTT platform marks a new revolution and serves as evidence of the increasing popularity of Indian content. This platform has given India the opportunity to showcase its content on a global scale, promoting cultural exchange. The vastness and potential of the Indian market has captured the attention of global content production and delivery players, and Indian content is also receiving positive feedback worldwide. For instance, according to Amazon Prime, 20% of viewers for Indian Amazon Originals are from outside the country. Additionally, Netflix’s adaptation of ‘Chotta Bheem’ as ‘Mighty Little Bheem’ has gained a significant viewership, particularly in Colombia, Argentina, Chile, and the US, making it the second most-watched original series globally in the kids’ genre after

Other trending superhits…

In 2020, the re-telecast of “Ramayan” set a world record by becoming the most viewed entertainment program globally, surpassing even the final episodes of popular TV series “Game of Thrones” and “Big Bang Theory.” Despite airing again after 33 years, the show was watched by 7.7 crore people across the globe, showcasing the enduring relevance of Indian content across all boundaries.

India’s creative output continues to impress audiences worldwide, as evidenced by two historic wins at the 2023 Oscars for RRR’s “Naatu Naatu” and “The Elephant Whisperers,” along with a recent Golden Globe award. The Indian Hindi novel “Tomb of Sand” also made history by winning the International Booker Prize last year, and Tamil writer Perumal Murugan’s “Pyre” has now made it to the longlist of the 2023 International Booker Prize. These achievements demonstrate how Indian content is once again taking center stage, with global audiences eager to find more about our ideas, history, stories, and teachings.

Role of Indian languages…

The emergence of these trends and findings is not coincidental. Several factors are working in favour of the widespread popularity of Indian content. The diversity of Indian languages is attracting global media and entertainment ventures. Furthermore, with the rapid digital transformation and increased internet penetration, regional content is gaining more attention than ever before.

Regional content is transcending territorial boundaries, technical constraints, and platform limitations, contributing to its increasing share on various digital platforms. The availability of content in various regional languages is also attracting more and more new internet users. This trend is fueling the growth of the Indian Dubbing Industry as well.

If India can sustain this growth rate, it’s reasonable to expect that, in a few years, the focus may shift to what India wants to see and what it wants the world to see.

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