In this digital era, the world is no longer what it used to be, and it takes courage and flexibility to embrace that change. Believing in the mantra that an idea can change everything, Sanjay and Anil has founded Silly Monks – A Digital Media and Entertainment Company.
Silly Monks has shown tremendous potential in its growth and is well-placed to be part of new digital revolution in India in the coming years. Started in in September 2013, Silly Monks has approximately 100 million views a month and addresses a social audience of more than 16 million followers across various social media platforms.
Founders behind the plan:
Sanjay Reddy has a vast experience in the corporate as an employee for almost 22 years that include his last assignment as a Business Head for Zee Network South. He was also associated some of the well-known Professional Organizations like, FICCI Entertainment Forum, South CII Hyderabad panel for Media & Entertainment (2010-11), Advertising Club of Hyderabad Governing Body (2010-2013), Mentor edge (IIM Ahmedabad VC body), and Telugu TV Producer Council (TTPC) etc. Into cinema he had tried his hands in production and as well as in acting.
Anil Pallala is an audio engineer with twelve years of experience in music production and radio. He is a musical artist, who does not play, stage, and sing but plays a vital role in the music production. Anil studied at Audio Engineering School in India taking up courses for Recording Arts, Sound Mixing, Mastering, Acoustics, and Electronic Music Producer. Eventually, he worked as an audio engineer in Super Good Films in India from 2002 to 2004.
What we do is different:
Silly Monks was born to provide the best environment for artists, shortfilm & web series makers to create, distribute, and monetize their original content on YouTube and other digital platforms. Their primary goal is to provide talent the support, resources and community that allow them to excel on the digital platform. As talent themselves, they experienced the challenges to be a one person production studio—from singing to make-up, shortfilm making, to producing, to editing, and then to find time to be creative.
The eclectic young team hails from a range of backgrounds, comprising equal parts formal education and street smarts. This helps the company bring an element of uniqueness to its work. With a belief that there is always room for improvement, Silly Monks is constantly establishing (and meeting) rising standards of performance.
There are digital agencies, advertising agencies, media buying agencies and creative agencies. We are none of these; we are all of these. A one-stop-shop for all your digital and creative needs,
whether it be for a brand, a celebrity, a start-up, or a movie.
Revenues and Funding:
Silly Monks bagged INR 4.75crore revenue in 2015-16, and anticipating a growth of 50-percent in the current year with its presence in south India, Mumbai and Los Angeles.
In June 2014, the firm had raised a smaller round from angel investor Korrapati Ranganatha Sai of Vaaraahi Chalana Chitram, who is a well-known producer and has delivered movie hits like Rajamouli’s Eega (Makhi)and Legend.
Recently, the company got a funding of $448,000 (INR 3crore) from Mr. Sreenivasa Reddy Musani, CEO & MD of LeapZen, as its seed capital. “The funds raised will further secure and maximise ROI for our clients, by delivering new digitally-immersive online experiences to a highly connected customer base and help create innovative original content,” Sanjay Reddy, Founder and Managing Director of Silly Monks said.
Opportunities & Challenges
The new media ecosystem has evolved to new levels in recent years, keeping pace with changing consumer behavior and increased access to digital devices. Connectivity and access have continued to provide a tailwind for the growth of various components comprising new media.
The digital media product consumption in this segment is currently pegged at Rs 8,000 crore ($ 1.2 billion) and expected to grow at a CAGR of 33.5 percent to reach a mind-boggling number of Rs 25,500 crore ($ 3.9 billion) by 2020 in India.
As far as multi-channel networks in India are concerned, Culture Machine is one of the market leaders, backed with $18 million in a Series-B funding round from Tiger Global Management, Times Internet and Zodius Capital, and tie-ups with over 500 content creators. The other startups in the space include Ping Network – that has emerged as a leader in the foodtainment space, Qyuki – which is a YouTube-certified MCN backed by stalwarts like Shekhar Kapur, AR Rahman and Samir Bangara, and #fame, previously Famebox Networks – augmented by a $10-million round of funding.
“We are focusing on film-marketing to cope up with the competition, said Sanjay in an interview. He also added that, at Silly Monks, they are transformers, so competition is not a challenge for them and hence are a strong player in the film marketing to music band production to promotion of different brands in the online, market helping various stakeholders, ranging from SME to big film production houses – to musicians to content creators, to grow their digital footprint”.
Silly Monks has many popular digital media properties like MonkStar, which is their platform for independent artists, and over 650 YouTube channels with original content.
Besides being Google and Yahoo partners in India, the startup has also co-produced the Telugu movies ‘OohaluGusagusalade’,‘DikkuluChoodakuRamayya’,‘Tungabhadra’, ‘Raja CheyyiVesthe’, along with their angel investor.
In the immediate short term, encouraged by the largely positive response to the first Telugu web series MuddapappuAvakai produced by Pink Elephant Pictures, under the Silly Monks Network, the company plans to launch six web series properties on its YouTube channel ‘SILLY TUBE’.