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Why Zee Has Partnered With Airtel After Removing Its Content From Jio

| Published on August 21, 2018

After a disagreement over price, Zee Entertainment has removed all its content from Jio within a week of posting it and has moved into a strategic alliance with Bharti Airtel.

The New Partnership


Also Read: Sunil Mittal Finally Reveals What Made Him Complain Jio For Airtel’s Loss

As part of this alliance, Zee and Airtel will work on creating exclusive video content for Airtel’s video-on-demand app Airtel TV and ZEE’s app ZEE5.

Over 50 million Airtel TV app users will get access to ZEE5 content including ZEE5 Originals, movies, TV shows, plays and more under a bundled subscription offer with Airtel TV’s plan.

“It’s a larger partnership and a win-win for both of us,” Punit Goenka MD, ZEE told ET. “Airtel brings a huge consumer base, which today, potentially, is not even exposed to the OTT world or even some of the new age youth audience which is not available to the TV.”

“The Jio exit and Airtel deal are independent of each other. We have been in talks with Airtel for long,” Goenka said. “This doesn’t mean that we don’t want a deal with Jio. I would love to offer our content on Jio, provided we get a fair value. But going ahead, we will ask for consumer insights also to be part of the deal.”

The USP of this Deal


In the current scenario, the biggest benefit that Goenka is eyeing is the consumer data and insights from Airtel. As part of the deal, Airtel will share the user database and provide insights on geographical and other behavioral demographics which will, in turn, help Zee to understand, what kind of content works best for which segment.

Consumer Data was one of the key negotiation points of this deal, keeping in mind the long-term partnership and mutual goals. “It is very critical in today’s time because that’s the way we will understand our consumers’ behavior and how they are reacting to the content. We are not just pure content suppliers. It’s a strategic alliance and therefore it has to be treated in that manner,” Goenka added.

On why consumer data is so important, Tarun Katial, CEO, ZEE5, said that it will allow the company to have a full understanding of the consumer. “We will have their profile, their usage pattern etc which will help us in creating better content for them, better targeting and personalization. We want to use content, data, and technology as three pillars in this deal.”


Gopal Vittal, MD — India & South Asia at Bharti Airtel said that the partnership is a natural fit. “Exclusive content from ZEE brings that extra element of differentiation to our digital play while providing this content better discoverability across our large user base.”

Well, however the content shifts between brands, one thing that we can’t ignore is that brands are really working hard towards providing their users great viewing experiences. It’s definitely a golden time for consumers. especially with factors like demographics being considered for developing content, it will allow the user to watch content as per his preferred choices.

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