Following the success of gaming and content around it in matured markets around the globe, India too is catching up. However still a niche, gaming is beginning to show signs of emerging as a big sector in the country.
Tencent’s PUBG Mobile can be considered as one of the catalysts which infused quite the craze for multiplayer gaming in the country for the first time, albeit on mobile. However, as gaming becomes a much clearer idea for the masses, the scope for fresh gaming content is also presenting further opportunities.
CHNO Media is one of the companies attempting to fill in the gaps. It is a gaming content and talent start up which is working with streamers and gamers and bringing them under one umbrella.
“The idea is very simple; we want the gaming content to be spread across the universe of your usual content creator and to be consumed and to be understood by a larger audience than what it is currently being used as.” Says CHNO Gaming founder Anshu Patni Singhi.
As per FICCI EY report, digital media in India grew by 42 per cent to reach Rs. 169 billion in 2018. Estimates are that, video consumption has been growing at 500 per cent per annum and most of it is coming from mobile handsets.
The report further states that smartphone users reached 340 million in the past year and is predicted to touch 925 million by 2023. The revised data plans have made people consume more video content. The digital subscriptions have also grown by 262 per cent to reach Rs. 14 billion in 2018 and are expected to hit Rs 20 billion by 2020. Over 500 million Indians are expected to have watched videos online by 2020.
CHNO has been actively collaborating with known gamers and streamers from the country with around 25 names to their kitty. According to the Singhi, the company is focusing more on the casual side of gaming, from the likes of Candy Crush to fantasy sports. Esports being one of the buzzwords, is not being left behind by the company either.
Apart from the evident rise of OTTs, live streamed videos are making waves as more and more publishers lean into the genre. “I also truly believe that the entire cycle of content is now at a point wherein it is looking for new avenues so five years back how content ecosystem was kind of brought to light through the comedy creators. Now the next wave is going to come through live music, live streaming, short form content and more.”
Streaming games has been an integral part of the ecosystem since a long time now. With Twitch, YouTube and Facebook being preferred platforms, the streamers also work as influencers for specific gaming or related brands. The rise of international names like Tyler “Ninja” Blevins of Fortnite fame and world’s leading YouTube star Felix Arvid Ulf Kjellberg aka PewDiePie further strengthens the belief that there is a huge space for online gaming content.
Says Singhi, “So the idea was that through content you bring more opportunities to the talent, you create more interactions for the publishers, you take these gaming brands at different stratas and finally you create very objectified, very targeted content pieces for the target audiences that they are reaching out to.”
The company is largely divided into two blocks, one is talent management and the other is content creation. They represent the content creator Karan Talwar aka BollywoodGandu and also recently launched the country’s first podcast dedicated to gaming, featuring Kartkya Bhel who is the first ever FIFA player to win an international championship.
The narrative of the company’s content is rather casual, in tandem to its global counterparts. “It’s not a very strong hard core narrative. That’s just the position that we have chosen because we feel the larger audience needs to understand,” says the founder.
Singhi has been earlier associated with entertainment content ecosystem for the last 14 years and used to run the content business for a company called Kwan Entertainment which dealt in celebrity management. Furthermore, she has also worked with Reliance Broadcast as a brand head for IPs.
We have already established that India is a content hungry nation and with the boom of digital, it is seemingly reaching a phase where the supply is meeting the demand. CHNO’s path should lead to some very happening places given they fill the gaps in the gaming content ecosystem in the country.