Indian Media Giant Zee, Swedish Streaming Firm Voddler Team Up

Subhash Chandra

The companies will partner on a Zee TV streaming service that will target India, the U.S. and Indonesia starting next year.

LONDON – Indian media giant Zee Entertainment Enterprises has teamed with Voddler, a European cloud-based video streaming operator. The partners said Tuesday they have inked a strategic partnership to deliver premium streaming content to key markets, initially targeting India, the U.S. and Indonesia.

The deal will see Voddler, based in Stockholm, build and operate a global online streaming service for Zee’s premium content, to be branded and marketed by Zee.

The deal was announced by Indian media entrepreneur and Zee chairman Subhash Chandra and Voddler CEO Marcus Backlund.

From its core market of India, Zee already delivers content to more than 670 million viewers in 168 countries worldwide.

The partnership with tech innovator Voddler focuses on growing that footprint online, using on Zee’s library of more than 100,000 hours of television and film programming.

"Zee turned 20 years this fall. As we now step into our third decade, we are transforming ourselves from a broadcaster to a narrowcaster that will cater to every screen," said Chandra. "Voddler’s solution, with its innovative streaming technology and almost limitless cloud solution, enables us to execute on that strategy fast and efficiently."

Said Backlund: "We’re thrilled to partner with Zee to offer their premium series and movies to fans globally."

The first part of the partnership will be a pilot VOD service, built and operated by Voddler and featuring Zee premium content, offered globally for both online and offline viewing and due for release in early 2014.

Under the agreement, Zee has also an option to invest $5 million in Voddler. Other financial details were not disclosed.