The Chennai-based start-up is in talks to raise $5 million
A Chennai Angels-backed start-up, which is in talks to pick up venture capital funding, is looking to disrupt the Indian movie industry with a streaming service that is targeted at NRIs (non-resident Indians) in the U.S, Europe and Australia.
ReelBox, which has picked up angel funding from the Chennai Angels network and is in talks with several venture capital funds to pick up $5 million over the next six months, allows its users to stream a vast quantity of local language movies for a small fee. “The way we operate is a little different. We don’t spend vast quantities of money on buying content. In our service, the film producers maintain the rights to the film at all times… they just use us as a service and reap the benefits,” Karthik Vaithianathan, Founder & CEO, told this correspondent.
“I go to each producer, get his physical reel, digitize it, and put it on the cloud, and then give it back to him. It allows him a wider reach while allowing him to keep the rights to it,” he added.
ReelBox’s set-up is simple: its technology is similar to what U.S streaming giant Netflix uses. Users have to plug in a device into their TVs. They then will be able to stream ReelBox’s database of movies for a per-film fee, which usually ranges from $1 to $10, depending on how new or old the movie is.
Though ReelBox’s catalogue currently contains only Kannada movies, Mr. Vaithanathan expects to launch 1,500 Tamil movie titles by the end of this June. He hopes to bring the ReelBox service to the Indian market within a year, which is when it will really start challenging the film distribution industry.
“We’re in talks with Tamil movie producers and film-makers. I don’t see ReelBox going after the super-hits… we’re talking about revolutionising the medium and lower-end,” he said.