[caption id="attachment_104480" align="alignnone" width="700"]Sudhanshu Vats, Group CEO - Viacom18 & Gaurav Gandhi, COO - Viacom18 Digital Ventures Sudhanshu Vats, Group CEO - Viacom18 & Gaurav Gandhi, COO - Viacom18 Digital Ventures[/caption]

Viacom18, one of India’s growing media and entertainment companies, has launched its digital VOD platform VOOT. VOOT will be an advertising led VOD platform and will be available for free on iOS, Android and web.

In a major move aimed at curating the largest repository of kids’ characters in the Indian OTT space, VOOT will house popular characters from across networks - from Nick characters like Dora, Spongebob, Motu Patlu to external popular characters like Chhota Bheem and Pokemon. In another first for an Indian OTT player, VOOT has launched with the repository of original content. VOOT Originals will roll out shows in both long and short formats across genres like comedy and drama. Furthermore, Viacom18 will move its entire content library, including COLORS, MTV and Nick, to be digitally available only on VOOT.

Commenting on the launch, Sudhanshu Vats, Group CEO, Viacom18, said, “India is at the cusp of a digital boom with over 400 million internet users and  200 million+ smart phone users spending significant amount of time online with entertainment and allied content being the prime driver. As more people move towards consuming content online, it is time for Viacom18 to move into the world of connected screens. Hence VOOT.”

VOOT’s target audience strategy is in line with Viacom18’s strategy – it is a one stop destination for tots to adults.

With digital advertising led video-on-demand category set to develop into a ~$1 billion business opportunity, Viacom18 has lined up an aggressive mix of business, content and marketing strategies. “From a business standpoint, we are following the advertising led VOD model. As the market matures in the next 12-24 months, we will be evaluating both freemium and subscription led models,” explained Gaurav Gandhi, COO, Viacom18 Digital Ventures.

The VOOT bouquet of offerings will include fresh, new content mix, keeping in mind the varied demands of the consumer base. VOOT has planned six originals through its launch phase, and is all set to introduce India’s first mockumentary – Badman. Written and directed by Soumik Sen and co-written by stand-up comedian Anubhav Pal; this 4-part film has Gulshan Grover playing himself. Soadies, a comic spin off of the ever popular Roadies, was also unveiled at the launch. With Baba Sehgal in the lead role, the web sit-com produced by Frames has all his trademark antics to laugh your guts out.

The OTT platform will offer a personalised experience and intuitive product features to engage the always on generation. With VOOT Viacom18 continues to enrich the lives of every Indian with something for everyone.

VOOT will be available for free on iOS, Android and web and delivered over mobile and WiFi networks.

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