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Last Updated : Sep 06, 2019 06:22 PM IST | Source:

Russell Peters returns to India, as live events become popular entertainment option

Of the total number of tickets platforms like BookMyShow or Paytm sell in a month, 28 percent is for live entertainment and the rest is movies

Maryam Farooqui @farooqui_maryam
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Todays L/H

Are you a fan of comedy superstar Russell Peters? Do you want to catch his show? Well, the wait is over as he is coming back to India and you won't have to go too far to catch him live in action.

It is ZEEL’s (Zee Entertainment Enterprise Limited) out-of-home vertical Zee Live, which is getting Peters to India again through their intellectual property Supermoon.

Supermoon aims to get global acts in the space of music and comedy to India.


Russell Peters coming back to India

Earlier this year, Peters had performed in Bangalore, Delhi and Mumbai. In the second phase of Supermoon, he is scheduled to perform in Pune, Ahmedabad and Hyderabad in October.

As many as 20,000 people had turned up to be a part of 'Peters Deported World Tour', and Zee Live amplified the experience by featuring the show on both Zee5 (their over-the-top platform) and Zee’s broadcast network.

According to Swaroop Banerjee, COO, Zee Live, the show didn't stop at 20,000 people. It reached 40 million through Zee’s assets like Zee5 and Zee’s broadcast network.

Zee Live creates live original content, including live events in the comedy and music space, owns that content and then disseminates it on their OTT platform as well as broadcast channels.

Banerjee also said that Zee5 is helping them have their own Zee Live universe.

But are people stepping out of their homes in the search for entertainment, that goes beyond movies?

The answer is yes.

Banerjee takes us a few years back. “In 2014- 2015, the IP (intellectual property) and event size was around Rs 5,000 crore. It took 15 years to reach that size. But now the industry is already going to touch Rs 10,000 crore next year. Comedy and music have become such a large part of it,” he said.

Banerjee also said that out of the total number of tickets platforms like BookMyShow or Paytm sell in a month, 28 percent is for live entertainment and the rest is movies. This means, around “four to five million people are buying tickets for live experiences,” he said.

“12 years back, Sunburn (a commercial electronic dance music festival held in India) had 700 to 800 people, Supersonic (a yearly music festival) got 7,000 people. Cut to today, there are about 26 music festivals – Sunburn gets three lakh people; Supersonic gets a lakh and half. 70-80 international acts are coming to India. Katy Perry (American singer) is performing in November and there are bigger acts also coming up. So, those five million tickets are going out between sports, music and comedy,” said Banerjee.

Live events getting the moolah

With more people buying tickets for live events, now a large part of the revenue for out-of-home entertainment events is coming from ticketing.

“Back in the day, for older IPs, the ticketing revenue would be 30-35 percent, and the dependency of the IP would be brand sponsorships. That has gone down drastically. Today, Zee Live is 65 percent ticket-buying, and 35-40 percent sponsorship. The trend is changing across India,” said Banerjee.

Banerjee also said that the other part of the revenue for live events is corporate buying.

Demand high in both metros and smaller towns

Banerjee pointed out that both metro and Tier II cities are consuming live events.

“We are taking our culture and education festival to our regional audiences because we have the broadcast power to take it to the regional audiences. The only difference is that we dropped the ticket prices. So, the average ticket price sees a 30-40 percent drop in smaller market,” he said.

For the Russell Peters show, tickets in Pune are available for Rs 1,200 to Rs 7,500. In Ahmedabad and Hyderabad, people can buy tickets for Rs 1,200 to Rs 5,000.

For the last edition, tickets were available for Rs 1,700- Rs 5,000 in Bengaluru, Rs 999 onwards in Mumbai and for Rs 1,500 in Delhi.

According to an EY 2019 report, India’s GDP growth is expected to be higher in smaller cities.

“This will result in increased spending on entertainment in those cities and a chance for Indian event companies to create low-cost and high-volume properties for these markets. Concerts, sports and personal events will drive this growth,” the report said.

Supermoon to offer more live events

It looks like Zee Live’s Supermoon will be a big contributor in the live entertainment space.

“We are launching two global artists under Supermoon music in October and December. We are launching an act of 11 cities with an artist, who is very dear to India. After that, we are dropping an international act in the Hip-hop and R&B space,” said Banerjee.

"In the January to March quarter, Zee Live will launch Supermoon Superstar act, one of the top 10 acts in the world. We are also looking at a festival with an all-girls line-up because the female audience is as large as the male. In fact, in many places, the female audience is larger,” he added.

Live entertainment beyond music and comedy

There is more to out-of-home entertainment than music and comedy.

Zee Live has also organized food, culture and education festivals through its IPs like 'Arth- a culture fest', and 'Zee Educare'.

The Zee Educare festival this year saw around 6,000 to 7,000 students, who wanted to know about alternate career options. Experts like Youtuber Prajakta Kohli, celebrity chef Saransh Goila and institutes that represent such courses were also present to guide the students.

In addition, Zee Live has plans to launch kids products, which they will be announcing soon.

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First Published on Sep 3, 2019 05:03 pm
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