Hotstar receives US$153MN cash injection | VOD | News | Rapid TV News
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Indian video streaming platform Hotstar has received US$153 million (INR 10.66 billion) in extra funding from its parent company Star India and Star US Holdings.

Hotstar logo 4 March 19The cash injection comes ahead of the start of this season’s IPL T20 cricket extravaganza, for which Hotstar holds the streaming rights. Together with its broadcast channels, Star India is eyeing over 300 million viewers during IPL 2019.

In addition, the over-the-top (OTT) platform has launched its branded Hotstar Specials, a raft of original digital content, including the **Indian versions of UK hits Criminal Justice and The Office produced in partnership with Applause Entertainment. In total, Hotstar has tied up with 15 filmmakers, including Bollywood royalty Salman Khan and Shekhar Kapur for its Specials series.

This latest round of funding comes just seven months after Hotstar’s operator, Novi Digital Entertainment, received INR 5.16 billion from Star US. In 2017, Star India had also injected INR 12.33 billion ($192.04 million) into the digital video platform, reported business intelligence platform

India’s video-on-demand (VOD) market is getting increasingly crowded, with further competition added earlier this week when Google rolled out its paid streaming service YouTube Premium. Hotstar remains market leader with 350 million downloads and over 150 million monthly active users. It vies for prominence with Netflix, Amazon Prime Video, MX Player, ZEE5, Eros Now, Voot and ALTBalaji, among other over-the-top (OTT) platforms.

India’s online video services are expected to add 25 million subscriptions over the next five years, exceeding 35 million subscriptions by the end of 2022, according to research from IHS Markit.