TheNFAPost Podcast
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Xfinite and Eros Now, a leading over-the-top (OTT) South Asian entertainment platform owned by global entertainment company Eros STX Global Corporation, announced it has deepened its partnership with Xfinite’s Mzaalo platform, a gamified video streaming service on track to have 10M users by year-end.

The partnership further establishes Eros Now’s footprint in advertising video on-demand (AVOD), a still-developing segment of the India streaming market that has significant growth potential, while allowing Eros Now to continue building its core subscription video on-demand (SVOD) service.

Xfinite partnership also adds to the 25 premium linear TV feeds and VOD platforms and plans to expand further to reach 200 content partners.

This agreement, given Xfinite’s innovative business model, also puts ErosSTX in a leadership position regarding digital asset growth and the use of blockchain technology. Algorand will serve as the foundational blockchain infrastructure as Xfinite selected the scalable blockchain in order to accommodate its accelerating adoption.

Commenting on the announcement, Eros Now CEO Ali Hussein says one of its strategic imperatives is to fully monetise the Eros Now platform.

“A key aspect of our strategy is to expand into ad-supported streaming and this partnership with Mzaalo does just that. We have an opportunity to monetize the more than 224 million Eros Now registered users who are fans of our content offering but are also price conscious,” said Ali Hussein.

He also said Mzaalo joins the company’s already-substantial ecosystem of Eros Now distribution partners, including Bharti Airtel, Vodafone Idea, BSNL, Tata Sky, Apple, Amazon and Roku – just to highlight a few.

“The Mzaalo agreement is purposefully structured to provide ErosSTX with an appropriate mix of fixed and guaranteed cash payments and variable revenue participation as Mzaalo scales. We are excited about the growth opportunity this new partnership represents,” said Ali Hussein.

Xfinite Global Plc CEO Swaneet Singh said Xfinite aims to revolutionize digital media by bringing forth innovations to customer experience, data driven engagement, and ecosystem economics for the benefit of the community.

“We offer a blockchain-based solution, powered by Algorand, to ensure transparency and re-establish trust in the digital world. We are extremely excited to be partnering with ErosSTX as part of our journey,” said Swaneet Singh.

Algorand COO Sean Ford said Eros has a visionary understanding of how blockchain can be leveraged for new opportunities in the media space.

“Broad blockchain adoption can only be achieved through the creation of products that are tangible and inclusive for any consumer, no matter what region they are in or what their background may be,” said Sean Ford.

With major partnerships with organizations that have millions of users, Algorand COO Sean Ford said Alground is excited to support Mzaalo’s new applications and welcome them to the Algorand community.

Mzaalo is a decentralised application (“dApp”) built on Algorand blockchain technology which operates a gamified streaming service offering more than 15,000 hours of premium content, as well as new mechanisms for engaging with content and other consumers.

The Mzaalo dApp provides consumers with free access to premium content including films, original series, short form content from Eros Now and other media platforms, as well as a range of interactive features. Mzaalo consumers are rewarded for their engagement via enhanced social engagement features and innovative incentivisation mechanisms including a digital token – the XET token.

Xfinite is an entertainment platform built around the digital token, XET, an Algorand Standard Asset. The XET token serves as the native currency of the Xfinite ecosystem and functions as a unique value exchange and governance mechanism for all stakeholders including users, brands and influencers, and content producers.

The XET token will offer its holders many benefits including unique value exchange and the ability to tap into economic incentives the Xfinite platform has to offer. Mzaalo, Xfinite’s first entertainment application, provides consumers with free access to premium content including films, original series, short form content from Eros Now and other media platforms, as well as a range of interactive features. Mzaalo consumers can earn rewards for their engagement that can be spent across fan tokens, merchandise, games and charitable giving through over 500 brand partners.

By “tokenizing” attention and engagement, consumers will be rewarded for their increased viewership and brands and influencers are given new ways to engage with their audiences. In this new ecosystem, consumers are treated equitably as partners in the relationship, and brands and influencers can vastly increase their ROI through hyper-targeted and measurable user engagement. The ErosSTX partnership with Mzaalo is the first of its kind anywhere in the OTT space globally.

India and emerging markets worldwide are characterised by a crowded digital marketing space which is growing exponentially as brands shift away from traditional media such as print and television to capture the digital growth. In 2020, India had nearly 700 million internet users across the country.

This figure was projected to grow to over 974 million users by 2025, indicating a big market potential in internet services for the South Asian country. India is now on the cusp of a massive revolution with digital marketing making inroads and brands looking to go beyond urban markets. The tokenization approach offered by Mzaalo to monetizing engagement is uniquely suited to the Indian digital consumer who currently has a plethora of content choices available.

About Eros STX Global Corporation:
Eros STX Global Corporation, (“ErosSTX”) (NYSE: ESGC) is a global entertainment company that acquires, co-produces and distributes films, digital content & music across multiple formats such as theatrical, television and OTT digital media streaming to consumers around the world. Eros International Plc changed its name to Eros STX Global Corporation pursuant to the July 2020 merger with STX Entertainment, merging two international media and entertainment groups. The combination of one of the largest Indian OTT players and premier studios with one of Hollywood’s fastest-growing independent media companies, has created an entertainment powerhouse with a presence in over 150 countries. ErosSTX delivers star-driven premium feature film and episodic content across a multitude of platforms at the intersection of the world’s most dynamic and fastest-growing global markets, including US, India, Middle East, Asia and China. The company also owns the rapidly growing OTT platform Eros Now which has rights to over 12,000 films across Hindi and regional languages, and had over 19 million premium paid subscribers as of March 31, 2021. For further information, please visit ErosSTX.com.

About Eros Now:
Eros Now, a division of Eros STX Global Corporation, is the world’s leading Indian OTT platform with over 19 million premium paid subscribers and 224 million registered users from over 150 countries across the world. It offers endless entertainment hosting one of the largest movie libraries (over 12,000 digital titles), as well as premium original episodic series, music videos, unmatched in quantity and quality. Eros Now also has a deep library of short-form content, totalling over 4,400 short-form videos including trailers, original short exclusive interviews, and marketing shorts. Eros Now was named as the ‘Best OTT Platform of the Year 2019’ at the British Asian Media Awards. The platform has also won awards for original content and marketing at the SCREENXX 2020. To access Eros Now please go to: www.erosnow.com or download the application.

About Xfinite:
Xfinite is a blockchain-based platform designed to re-establish trust between consumers, content creators, and publishers. Through the use of viewer-based rewards, the Xfinite ecosystem helps the media and entertainment industry combat advertising fraud by increasing transparency and creating a new habit of engagement. Xfinite has established various partnerships with global corporations in order to drive innovation and create new use cases for blockchain technology. Recent partnerships include those with: Dailyhunt, which has 280 million active users; SpiceJet which annually flies +60 million passengers across India; and Eros Now which has 36.2M paying subscribers and 216M registered users.

About Algorand:
Algorand Inc. built the world’s first open-source, permissionless, pure proof-of-stake blockchain protocol for the next generation of financial products. This blockchain, the Algorand protocol, is the brainchild of Turing Award-winning cryptographer Silvio Micali. A technology company dedicated to removing friction from financial exchange, Algorand Inc. is powering the DeFi evolution by enabling the creation and exchange of value, building new financial tools and services, bringing assets on-chain and providing responsible privacy models. For more information, visit www.algorand.com

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