Welcome to the wonderful world of Disney in India.
The Walt Disney Company has an 85 year heritage of creativity and innovation, and for generations, the Disney name has come to represent trust, decency, optimism and quality.
Disney, together with its subsidiaries and affiliates, is a leading diversified international family entertainment and media enterprise with five business segments:
- Media Networks - Walt Disney Television International (India), Disney-ABC International Television (Asia Pacific), ESPN
- Disney Interactive Media Group (formerly Walt Disney Internet Group) - Disney Online and Disney Interactive Studios
- Studio Entertainment - Walt Disney Studios Motion Picture International, Walt Disney Studios Home Entertainment, Disney Music Group, Disney Theatrical Group
- Disney Consumer Products - Consumer Products, Publishing
- Parks and Resorts
Disney is a Dow 30 Company, had annual revenues of over US$37billion in its most recent fiscal year, and a market capitalization of US$36.22billion as of April 29th, 2009. Worldwide, The Walt Disney Company has approximately 137,000 employees.
In 2007 and 2008, BusinessWeek magazine named Disney as the World's Most Innovative Entertainment/Media Company. Disney was ranked #9 in its Best 100 Global Brands study (by Interbrand) in 2007 and 2008, and # 1 in the media entertainment category. Recently, Fortune magazine named Disney as ˇ°America's Most Admired Companyˇ± in the entertainment sector for the fourth consecutive year.
Our goal is to create the world's best family entertainment and apply innovative technologies to raise the level of the consumer experience in a way that differentiates Disney. We call this value dynamic the Disney Difference.
Across all of our businesses, Disney is focused on three strategic priorities:
- Creating quality and innovative content that continues to differentiate Disney as best-in-class;
- Deploying cutting edge technologies to showcase our content for early competitive advantage while enhancing the customer experience; and
- Expanding and adding depth to our global presence, particularly in emerging markets
Disney's international business is a significant contributor to the company's bottom line and its growth is a key strategic priority for the company going forward. Given the global presence of business units already in place, the power of the Disney brand, and the emergence of new economies and technologies, the company is ideally positioned to develop new creative products and drive growth outside of the United States.
India has been identified as a priority for The Walt Disney Company. The Disney brand resonates with Indian families and audiences through the core values that permeate throughout its content. Local teams are working to deliver a mix of international content and locally relevant, rich storytelling, while introducing Disney characters to a new generation.
The Disney office in India opened in July 2004 and employs around 161 permanent staff. Four out of five lines of businesses are operational in India, and they fall under the integrated, emerging markets structure spearheaded by Mahesh Samat, MD of Walt Disney Company (India).
Television is a key brand driver for Disney in India. Starting as the first fully languaged channel from day one, Disney Channel (DC) and Jetix have consistently been leading networks for kids 4-14 in Cable & Satellite (C&S) programming. Since launch in December 2004, the network is driven by the success of key Disney Channel franchises and its localization strategy. Targeted at tweens aged 8-12 years, Disney Channel programming is available in English and Hindi. Jetix, the 24-hour basic cable channel, is home for Disney animation and live action heroes – including Storm Hawks, Vicky and Vetaal and Hero – Bhakti ki Shakti. Targeted at kids aged 4-9 years, Jetix programming is available in Hindi, English, Tamil and Telugu.
The combined reach of Disney channels is over 50 million homes with Star Den as the exclusive distribution partner. Through the terrestrial network, Disney Channel reaches over 122 million homes. Over the years, the channels won 23 awards including Best Children's Channel won by DC (two years in a row) at the Indian Television Academy awards.
Disney's portfolio of kids' channels seeks to strengthen connections with kids and their families by developing creative local content that reflects the lives and faces of the Indian market. The localization strategy includes production of Disney Channel original Indian content, local languages, local acquisitions, plus production of short-form original content to create the local environment. Outside of the US, India is one of the largest markets Disney has invested in for local production – exhibited through six locally produced original programs/ series since September 2006.
In July 2006, The Walt Disney Company acquired Hungama TV, a 24-hour Hindi language and top rated Indian children's television channel, firmly establishing Disney's commitment to localization in a rapidly growing media market, where local content development is key.
Disney India is also focused on localizing its international franchises by making them relevant while engaging its audiences in their stories and characters.
Disney Channel audiences in India tasted a local flavor of Disney Channel's Original Movie (DCOM) - High School Musical and High School Musical 2, through inspired-by and re-recorded tracks by popular Bollywood musicians and singers. DC also launched one of the India's largest inter-school dance competition - My School Rocks (MSR), by roping in well known Bollywood choreographers such as Saroj Khan (MSR) and Shaimak Davar (MSR2).
The Cheetah Girls One World became the first DCOM to be shot in India in 2008.
Last year, Disney Channel India localized a globally successful theme that connects with the audience through their own idioms. In India, this philosophy came alive as "Break Time Masti Time" – an innovative short form production that mirrors fun, laughter and antics of 14 year olds during their school breaks. This is the Indian rendition of the format pioneered in Disney Channel Italy as Quelli Dell'Intervallo a.k.a. "As the Bell Rings".
Disney-ABC International Television (Asia Pacific) is the international television distribution arm of The Walt Disney Company that licenses quality feature films, critically acclaimed network television series, reality and scripted TV formats, ABC news programming, kids animation and prestigious specials such as the Academy Awards to video-on-demand, mobile, pay-per-view, pay and free-to-air platforms across Asia Pacific.
Disney-ABC International Television was the first U.S. studio to establish a TV distribution office in India and has the largest on-ground presence in Asia Pacific than any other US studio – headquartered in Hong Kong with liaison offices in Mumbai, Sydney, and Seoul and liaison persons in Beijing. The division provides programming to 160 broadcasters across 35 territories in the region and licenses 30,000 hours of programming globally.
Dedicated to bringing the very best in film and television entertainment to the small screen, Disney-ABC International Television represents some of the hottest US shows including three of the top ten scripted series of the 2007-08 US Fall TV season to-date: Grey's Anatomy (#1), Desperate Housewives (#3), Lost (#5) . available on STAR India and STAR MOVIES. The division also boasts the No.1 comedy Samantha Who? and the No.2 drama Private Practice. Other hits under its portfolio include the multi award-winning series Ugly Betty and Brothers& Sisters as well as Eli Stone, Dirty Sexy Money, Ghost Whisperer, Dirt, Reaper, and the five-time Emmy-winning reality series The Amazing Race.
Disney-ABC International Television works closely with Indian broadcasters to provide dubbed content in local languages that appeal to local audiences. For the first time, select network series. are available in Hindi through the SAB Channel. Movies from Walt Disney Pictures, Pixar, Touchstone Pictures and Miramax Films are also available in five languages in India including Tamil, Telugu, Malayalam, Hindi and English on STAR MOVIES, Zee Studio, FILMY, MAX, Sun's network of channels, Ten Sports and Star Gold. Current and library titles include box office hits Pirates of the Caribbean, Ratatouille, Cars, National Treasure, Kill Bill, Cold Mountain, Cinderella Man and many more.
Reality formats continue to expand their international reach with a focus on localizing content wherever possible. An Indian version of the reality makeover show, Extreme Makeover produced by Sony Entertainment Television was launched in 2008. Hosted by Mona Singh, it was the first ever makeover show adapted for an Indian audience.
ESPN STAR Sports (ESS)-ESPN's joint venture with STAR . offers 14 customized television feeds and transmits in English, Hindi, Korean, Cantonese, and Mandarin to 24 countries throughout Asia. ESS also produces five local editions of SportsCenter, customized for viewers in India, Taiwan, Hong Kong, Malaysia and Southeast Asia, and maintains espnstar.com for sports fans across Asia.
Disney Interactive Media Group (DIMG) combines cutting-edge technology with fantastic storytelling, and is a leading, trusted provider of digital kids and family entertainment in the areas of mobile and internet.
The Disney Interactive Media Group (DIMG) has mobile content distribution agreements with 47 carriers and distributors in 16 markets in the Asia Pacific region, including: India, Japan, China, Hong Kong, Taiwan, Korea, Singapore, Thailand, the Philippines, Australia, New Zealand, Malaysia, Indonesia and Macau. In this region, there are more than 1.2 billion mobile consumers that have access to Disney Mobile content via carrier or aggregator/distributor relationships. In many of these markets, Disney is ranked as the top branded content provider.
Disney Mobile Theater, a wide variety of Disney-branded mobile entertainment . such as ringtones, ringbacks, wall papers, themes, animations, video shorts and games . is available via India's top carriers, such as Airtel, Vodafone, Reliance and Tata reaching more than 210 million mobile phone subscribers and representing more than 70% percent of India's mobile market and 85 percent of the data market.
DIMG provides digital content for Disney's international franchises while also creating a range of localized content for Disney's local stories and characters including its first local animation film, Roadside Romeo. DIMG plays an integral role in the availability and delivery of the products ideally suited and tailored for the local market. In its localization efforts, DIMG launched games with local flavor e.g. Disney Cricket, Mickey Mouse Rickshaw Rush, Donald Ganga Kinare, Donald 20-20 and Mickey's Coaching Camp.
DIMG also continues to innovate on the Interactive Voice Response System (IVRS) through content that delivers on Disney's core values while increasing its reach across the country.
Disney's online presence includes www.disney.in, www.jetixtv.com and www.hungamatv.com featuring games, videos, applications and other experiential content that are popular among kids and their families.
The Walt Disney Studios is the foundation on which Disney was built, and at its heart are world-renowned animated features and live-action motion pictures. Walt Disney Studios Motion Pictures International (WDSMPI) serves as the studio's international distribution and marketing arm.
WDSMPI distributes and markets motion pictures theatrically under Walt Disney Pictures - which includes Walt Disney Animation Studios, Pixar Animation Studios and DisneyToon Studios - Touchstone Pictures, Hollywood Pictures and Miramax Films.
In India, UTV handles the sales and distribution of all Walt Disney Studios. Hollywood produced films. Disney continues to handle its marketing directly through its India team.
WDSMPI has delivered many blockbusters over the years, including Pirates of the Caribbean: Dead Man's Chest in 2006, Ratatouille and Pirates of the Caribbean: At World's End in 2007, Enchanted and Wall-E in 2008.
In June 2007, WDSMPI teamed up with leading Bollywood studio Yash Raj Films to jointly produce Disney's first local movie, Roadside Romeo. A full length animation film made for Indian audiences, Roadside Romeo received critical acclaim for its quality of animation when it released in October 2008. Roadside Romeo gave Bollywood fans a taste of world class animation with complete Hindi movie masala magic.
Through the company's increased strategic investment in UTV, Disney continues to participate in the broader Bollywood opportunity to a greater degree.
WDSMP, India also extended its winning streak in animation - owning five of the top ten all-time slots, led by Disney/ Pixar's "The Incredibles" which created history by being the first-ever Hollywood film to be dubbed by a top Bollywood talent - Shahrukh Khan.
WDSHE is a leading player in the Indian home entertainment marketplace. WDSHE distributes the full range of DVD products produced, developed or acquired by the Studio group. The popularity of Disney titles among Indian families can also be gauged by the successes of The Lion King, Jungle Book, Incredibles and Pirates of the Caribbean 2 as the highest selling DVDs of all time in India.
Disney Consumer Products (DCP) plays a critical role in allowing Indian audiences to bring a piece of the Disney magic home through a wide range of creative and locally-appealing products. Globally focused on innovation, creativity and quality, and building strong relationships with key retailers, DCP continues to lead the global market in character merchandising with US$23 billion in retail sales (fiscal year 2008).
The division is comprised of 6 lines of businesses: Disney Fashion and Home, Toys, Consumer Electronics, Stationery, Food, Health and Beauty (FHB), Publishing and Retail Sales and Marketing (RSM).
DCP is showing significant momentum as it focuses on broadening its distribution reach by expanding product reach beyond large cities through existing licensees, focusing on 'direct to retail' relationships. DCP works with over 100 licensees across categories and has established new retail relationships which are delivering a broad range of products covering publishing, stationery, games, consumer electronics, toys, apparel and accessories to discerning consumers across the country.
DCP is bringing uniquely designed retail environments through the "store-in-store" concept to prominent retail outlets such as Lifestyle stores in Mumbai, Sapphire in Bangalore and Big Bazaar corners across India.
Disney Publishing Worldwide (DPW) is the largest publisher for children globally, reaching children in 14 Asian countries and regions in 10 different languages. Disney Publishing has an extensive presence in India providing a vast range of products for children across the country.
Over 300 titles have been published through 10 licensees in India. Disney books feature popular and classic Disney stories and characters including Mickey Mouse, Winnie the Pooh, the Princesses, That's So Raven, Lizzie McGuire, and Power Rangers. These products are available in different formats - storybooks, activity books, colouring books, sticker books, junior novels, and comics.
DPW has also delivered on localizing its content to increase reach while also being relevant to Indian consumers. Disney Adventures, the first international magazine for children in India targeting children 8-14 years, features over 35% local content. In 2008, through its licensee Popular Prakashan, DPW released around eight titles in two local languages . Hindi and Marathi. DPW launched a series of books to increase interactivity with the Indian characters of Roadside Romeo.
With Parragon India, Disney Publishing launched a Disney catalogue, detailing the new range of Disney books with an array of titles presenting popular animation characters and movie tie-in books in more vibrant and reader-friendly formats for young and young adult readers.
Disney is committed to brightening the lives of children by contributing to the wellness of families and children through public service initiatives, community outreach and volunteerism. Disney Outreach is actively delivering on this mission through hospital work, special events, and recognising bravery and excellence in youngsters.
Employees in India devote over 5000 hours of service for community welfare initiatives each year. India employees have pledged to brighten up 25 hospitals across the country as part of this year's initiative.