BPO and TV18 have joined hands to set up a media-outsourcing
firm, Source 18. Haresh Chawla, chief executive officer,
TV18 Group, and Amitabh Chaudhary, managing director and
chief executive officer, Infosys BPO, agree that it is
a great partnership and will bring the best of both the
shares with domain-b an exclusive interview
with Chawla and Chaudhary
does this bring to the table for TV 18 and what sort of
investments have you been looking at?
Chawla: I guess it is a massive space in the global media
market. Clearly, media companies are looking at two reasons
why this business is very important to them; one is, that
everybody, including us, is realising that any content
we generate, has to be available on multiple platforms
and multiple devices for us to extract value from it.
And that brings to fore, the issues of being able to process
all that content in time for it to reach the market quickly.
is one stream of increasing, as well as monetising the
content that the media companies are generating. The other
stream is that many media firms have got phenomenal amounts
of archived content that is lying in an envelope format
and is inaccessible to consumers.
whole ability to convert that content and create a long
tail of audio-visual content business is an opportunity.
We believe that there is a massive global opportunity.
Our business, TV18 will bring expertise of understanding
the medium, as well as the knowledge on how to work with
multiple platforms, along with Infosys and their understanding
of how to scale up and handle these processes.
think it is a great partnership for the market, which
is expected to be fairly large in the whole data processing
space, where text content was converted to digital format
and now almost all text content is digital. A similar
thing is likely to happen in the audio-visual space.
does that bring to the table for you as a company and
how much of an initial investment did you make?
Chaudhary: We are delighted to be a partner of TV18, because
we are bringing the best of both worlds together. On one
side, we have the domain expertise of TV18 and media space.
On the other side, it is all about scalability and about
bringing a processed mindset to the media entertainment
see this as a huge opportunity on the demand side. We
have seen an overwhelming response from a number of clients.
Media companies have brought globalisation to the public,
but they have not globalised themselves.
the investments are happening in the front office for
a media company; the back office were never paid any attention
and we can bring the expertise together to make it happen.
investment will basically happen in terms of hiring the
right kind of people who can take Source-18 to the next
level. So we are putting a management team in place; some
of it will come from us and some of it will come from
TV18, in addition to which, we might hire some people
is the spend on marketing, as well as hiring the sales
people; so, the overall spend is not very large. Both
the companies have signed up for the spend and we have
already kind of been at it for certain period of time.
on the feedback from the customers, we are very hopeful
that this will be a unique proposition in the media entertainment
space and we want to be a very large player alongwith
TV18 and we are quite hopeful of our success.
role does Tangerine play?
Chawla: Tangerine is an outfit that is a technology leader
in content repurposing. They have got expertise in the
mobile space, ability to convert audio-visual content
or films, or show episodes into multiple mobile formats
and creating content for the mobile space.
think the purpose of Source-18 is also to be able to address
all the needs of media companies, as they have fairly
specialised needs. So Infosys also brings an understanding
of all other processes that a media company would probably
need in the financial space or inventory management, etc.
brings in the creative and content repurposing understanding,
while Tangerine also comes in with its understanding of
technology and repurposing on the mobile platforms.
are the percentage holdings in the JV? Is it a 50:50 JV
at this point of time?
Chaudhary: No, we have not formally signed any JV; we
have just brought the two companies together to create
a Source-18 outfit. We will be spending money on our resources
and TV18 and Tangerine will be doing on their own.
are going to come up with a joint business plan and are
going to share the cost of the business plan together.
There are certain things, which will be done and will
be housed in TV18 because they are good at it and some
things will be housed in Infosys BPO. We did not want
to go a joint venture way now, because sometimes the objectives
are in conflict. So we have just brought a business plan
together, which we call Source-18. Both parties will share
the cost and benefits of the plan together.
have touched on scalability; you have got one client -
National Geographic. What does the road ahead look like,
in terms of client addition for the rest of 2008? Can
you share with us, any dialogues that you have had in
terms of the number of people?
Chaudhary: We have had dialogues with a number of media
companies and we also have certain media clients, who
are a part of Infosys BPO; so do TV18 and Tangerine.
are trying to see how this coming together of the two
parties will allow us to work certain processes, which
media may not have looked at.
have media clients for whom we do finance and accounting
work or ad generation work. We are trying to see if can
we go to the media
production side and take TV18 there and potentially, they
can pick up some work on that perspective.
TV18 has similar clients, as well as joint ventures of
their own. And we will looking at how to go to their clients
and the joint ventures and pick up work related to the
enterprise side of the business. So we are very hopeful.