At UnPluggd, we celebrate entrepreneurship. We bring in people who have built great companies and entrepreneurs who have a lot to share.
Introducing to you, Radhakrishnan – founder of iStream.
iStream offered video content and iStream had raised $5 mn from Saif partners last year. The company bagged rights to stream cricket matches and television programs as well and unfortunately, shutdown last week.
My team was heartbroken. They just couldn’t rationalise the situation. Neither could I.
We were by far the undisputed leader in the premium online video space in India.. Our numbers were soaring – in March we crossed 6 million unique users; and over 12 million video views. We had marquee brands advertising with us. And more!
All this, in just over a year.
And now we are forced to shut istream.com down – something we built with so much passion, emotion and honest sweat.
I don’t have all the answers as to why it had to end this way.
We had built a great technology and product team backed by a solid digital media team. We had millions of passionate users coming in every month, and rising by the hour. We had top brands endorsing our product –giving us premium ad dollars.
While one could debate the best business model for a digital media product like ours – whether India is an ad driven digital economy; or whether the market is ripe for experimenting with a subscription model, the fact remains that online video is a capital intensive business, requiring patience and cash flows. This is not unique to us or India, that is how it has been everywhere.
For a product that was doing amazingly well, it must have been a difficult decision to shutdown the company. Were they playing in wrong market? What are some of the key learning Radha had, running iStream?
What are your questions for Radha? Ask them here.
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