Zulfia Waris on launch of ABP Studios: “We’ll be looking at international partners”

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ABP Network recently unveiled the launch of its Mumbai based content and production company, ABP Studios. The studio offers a diversity of services such as IP Creation, production, co-production of fiction & non-fiction content across various platforms, Licensing & Syndication services, Brand Solutions, Second Screen and Interactive content. BizAsiaLive.com’s Raj Baddhan caught up with Zulfia Waris, Business Head, ABP Studios about the company’s plan.

ABP Studios has finally made its launch, tell us mote about this venture?
ABP Studios is a classic content and production studio with a team of experts in their field. This company will enable ABP Network to foray into the entertainment spear and garner long-term value for the network. We offer a diversity of services such as IP Creation, production, co-production of fiction & non-fiction content across various platforms, Licensing & Syndication services, Brand Solutions, Second Screen and Interactive content.

The studio will identify, curate, and nurture stories from different regions that connect & unify a country as diverse as India.

With your experience of over two decades in building brands, how excited are you about the launch of ABP Studios?
In India, a studio isn’t a brand, but it’s a service. Normally, production houses create content and give the IP to their clients. This is something we wish to change, as we want to own our content.

We are heavily investing in our content and while also looking into co-productions opportunities. Our vision is to create content that transcends borders, and gives greater appeal to local Indian stories. Over the years, we hope to have our stamp on such content and be recognised as a leading content player in the market.

We wish to celebrate the grey because that in turn will encourage originality and disruptive thought – which in our opinion is crucial in a world that has become increasingly polarised.

Having worked in content creation for the last two decades, I am thrilled to be a part of this new division. What excites me the most is that, this time, I’m at the helm of both the business and creative content frontiers.

The slogan has also been cleverly chosen as ‘Stories Beyond Black & White’ – What’s your reasoning behind this?
While entertainment is the backbone of any piece of content – we wanted ours to have a distinctive voice, which inspired, opened minds, was inclusive and more importantly did not force a binary perspective. We wanted to tell stories that were layered, stayed clear of stereotypes – urged viewers to delve deeper to focus on what lies between the lines. This gave birth to our fundamental motto of “stories beyond black and white”. We wish to celebrate the grey because that in turn will encourage originality and disruptive thought – which in our opinion is crucial in a world that has become increasingly polarised.

Prior to this, you’ve worked with many entertainment brands, how will it be different at ABP Studios?
At ABP Studio, I will be doing exactly what I’ve been doing for the past 20 years, which is to create entertaining content.

Before ABP Studios, I have worked solely on the creative spear of the entertainment business, but this is my first stint working in both the creative and business aspects. This really excites me as this gives me complete control of my content – how it needs to be expressed, distributed, marketed and monetized.

Tell us about the distribution method of your ABP Studios content in international territories?
We will be looking at international partners and distributors who will be distributing our content globally. This will be done not just on one platform but on multiple platforms.

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