Online movie and event ticketing platform BookMyShow (BMS), owned and operated by Mumbai-based Bigtree Entertainment, is looking to generate additional revenue through content and native advertising. The portal received Rs 550 crore worth of funding last month and is now valued at Rs 3,000 crore.
Says Ashish Hemrajani, CEO, BookMyShow, “The funding is raised from a long-term prospective, which, in our business, is three-four years. The funding will enable us to invest in data analytics and building contextual entertainment content such as videos, trailers and reviews. We are looking to generate three-four revenue streams in the next four years.”
BookMyShow is now putting out 500 pieces of original content every month for the past two months. It includes film reviews, news and features on the film industry, etc. It has also redesigned its website with a magazine-style approach. “The movie discovery process is very magazine-like. At times, a user just wants to browse through the movies that are playing before making any decision,” says Hemrajani. “The new design also helps us in maximising the real estate on the web, along with bringing out the creatives that we get from our partners, production houses or event organisers.”
Post the re-designed website going live, the company claims its bounce rate has reduced by approximately 60%, while the average time spent by a user on the website has gone up by approximately 20%.
“Content is not an easy game to play. But as of now it looks like BookMyShow has a plan and might be looking at creating a differentiated positioning compared to the traditional attempts that have been made by players in the space,” says Ajay Shah, partner, media and entertainment and transaction advisory services, EY.
The content piece, coupled with the advertising platform launched last year, is aimed at making advertising a significant revenue source. BMS is looking to increase advertising revenue through branded content and native ads and expects it to contribute 10% to the overall revenue.
While BMS has been the market leader in the online movie and live-event ticketing space, competition is fast catching up with Alibaba-backed Paytm tying up with top multiplex chains like PVR, INOX and Cinepolis. With this, the movie ticketing aggregator is facing competition on its premium revenue-generating screens. “BookMyShow was the first mover and had a great run. With Paytm coming in, the space will get more competitive,” says Shah of EY. Also, cashbacks and discounts offered by Paytm could create strong competitive pressure among aggregators, as today the model is of charging a convenience fees.
Clearly, the move towards content indicates BMS’ focus on maintaining its competitive advantage as ancillary platforms like mobile wallets are eating away into its ticketing-based business model.