Zee Media: The success story of India's Largest Media Company

Zee Media: The success story of India's Largest Media Company
Zee Media

Company Profile is an initiative by StartupTalky to publish verified information on different startups and organizations. The content in this post has been approved by Zee Media.

What is life without media and entertainment? Our lives would become so mundane if we didn't have a pinch of entertainment and news to ponder over what is happening around the world.

The media and entertainment industry is sure booming and with all the right sense to the given latest technological advances and trends. It is not something that the industry would change so much but, it is up to the people and the way they watch these media channels.

In this article, we are going to read all about Zee Media, which is India's leading entertainment and news network. A part of the multibillion-dollar Essel Group, Zee Media.

To know more about the company, let's explore their startup story and growth, founders and team, investors, the challenges faced by them, business and revenue model, competitors, and their plans.

Zee Media - Company Highlights

Startup Name Zee Media
Headquarters Noida, Uttar Pradesh
Sector Broadcast Media Production and Distribution
Founder Subhash Chandra
Founded 2004
Revenue Rs 242.81 crore Q3(FY22)
Total Funding Raised Rs 230 crore
Parent Organisation Essel Group
Website www.zeenews.com

Zee Media - About

Zee Media Corporation Limited (ZMCL) formerly known as Zee News Limited is the news broadcasting company of the Essel Group. It is one of the leading media and entertainment companies that has a very strong presence in the news and regional entertainment channels. The majority of the content that the company airs on satellite television channels uplinked from India is news, current affairs, and regional entertainment shows.

The company has a wide variety of news channels under the brand name Zee which includes the English news channel WION. Zee Media also operates the ZEE5 distribution platform.

Zee Media - Industry

Zee Media belongs to the Entertainment and media industry. As per authentic reports, India Media and Entertainment industry is estimated to reach $30.9 bn by 2024.

Zee Media - Startup story and Growth

The company was initially incorporated as Zee Sports Ltd, founded by the Essel Group (also known as Zee Group) in 1999. The Group was originally founded as the Messrs Ramgopal Indraprasad in 1926 by Jagannath Goenka. His grandson Subhash Chandra later expanded the company and renamed it Essel Group.

Zee Sports Ltd was reincorporated as Zee News Ltd. on 27th May 2004. Later after nine years, the name was changed to Zee Media Corporation Limited.

Zee Media had partnered with Dainik Bhasker Group to publish its newspaper known as the Daily News & Analysis, but to insufficient profit, the publication of the newspaper was stopped. Additionally, the company operates the Zee Institute of Media Arts (ZIMA), which is owned by Zee Learn, the Essel Group's educational division.

Formerly known as Zee News Limited, the Zee Media Corporation was a division of Zee Telefilms Ltd, later renamed Zee Entertainment Enterprises. In 2006, it was separated from the Essel Group as a standalone business.

It was in 1992 when the Essel Group started taking a lot of stake in the entertainment industry, also the year when it incorporated Zee Telefilms Ltd.

Fast forward to 2006, Zee Telefilms Ltd was divided into three entities by Essel: Zee News Ltd, the group's news broadcasting division; Wire & Wireless India Ltd (later called Siti Networks), the cable division; and Zee Telefilms Ltd, the direct consumer broadcasting division. Zee Telefilms Ltd was renamed Zee Entertainment Enterprises Ltd less than a year after it was founded.

Zee Media - Key People

Zee Media was founded by the Essel Group. The group was founded by Subhash Chandra Goel

Subhash Chandra Goel

Subhash Chandra- Chairman of the Essel Group
Subhash Chandra- Chairman of the Essel Group

Subhash Chandra, the grandson of Jagannath Goenka is the person who started the Essel Group. He is the Chairman of the Essel Group, and also the Chairman of Zee media but resigned in 2016. He is a member of Parliament, Rajya Sabha.

Subhash was born in Haryana. He never got to complete his schooling because of a lack of money. He started his career by joining the family business of commission agents and supplying rice to the Food Corporation of India.

Subhash has won awards like International Emmy Directorate Award (2011), and Canada India Foundation, Chanchlani Global Indian Award (2016).

Jawahar Goel

Jawahar Goel-Chairman of Essel Group

Jawahar Goel is the younger brother of Subash Chandra Goel, the chairman of the Essel Group. Jawahar is the editor-in-chief of the Zee Media network. He is also the Chairman of the media network's 'Editorial Governing Council'. Besides this, Goel played as the Managing Director of Dish TV but has recently stepped down from the role. He has worked with companies like the London Stock Exchange Group, Systematix Shares & Stocks, and more.

Zee Media - Mission and Vision

The company's mission is to become the world's global media company. Its vision is mainly about Customer Focus, Excellence, Integrity, Creativity, and Growth Driven.

The name of Zee Media as mentioned early was known as Zee News Limited. It was in 2013, that the company was renamed.

Zee Media - Business Model

Zee Media operates its business through various channels some of them in regional-based languages to reach every Indian.

The number of channels by Zee Media is:

  • Zee News - 1999 (Hindi)
  • Zee Business - 2005 (Hindi)
  • Zee Rajasthan - 2013 (Hindi)
  • Zee Madhya Pradesh Chhattisgarh - 2013 (Hindi)
  • Zee Hindustan - 2017 (Hindi)
  • Zee Uttar Pradesh Uttarakhand - 2017 (Hindi)
  • Zee Bihar Jharkhand - 2017 (Hindi)
  • Zee Delhi NCR Haryana - 2022 (Hindi)
  • Zee Punjab Haryana Himachal- 2013 (Hindi, Punjabi)
  • WION - 2016 (English)
  • Zee 24 Ghanta - 2007 (Bengali)
  • Zee 24 Taas - 2007 (Marathi)
  • Zee Salaam - 2010 (Urdu)
  • Zee 24 Kalak - 2017 (Gujarati)
  • Zee Kannada News - 2022 (Kannada) Available only on digital platform
  • Zee Malayalam News - 2022 (Malayalam) Available only on digital platform
  • Zee Tamil News - 2022 (Tamil) Available only on digital platform
  • Zee Telugu News - 2022 (Telugu) Available only on digital platform
  • Zee Odisha News - 2022 (Odia) Available only on digital platform

The Zee Media Corporation Limited also has its presence on digital platforms like YouTube, Facebook, and Twitter. The company also has its websites for particular business activities:

Zee Media Corporation
Zee Media Corporation
  • Zee News Website
  • Zee5 Website
  • WION Website
  • India.com

Zee Media - Revenue Model

Recently the Zee company under its flagship company Zee Studios, its movie business was the production house for the movie "The Kashmir Files". The company earned a lot of profit from the success of the movie. The success of the movie alone has about the company a revenue of about Rs 2,000- 2,500 crore.

This fiscal year, Zee studios itself has been a bigger contributor to the company's revenue growth.

Although Zee Media generated its revenue from Zee Studios this year, most of its earnings are from Zee News.

Zee News is one of the oldest channels owned by the Essel Group. It has a wide variety of regional news channels. One of the biggest sources of income it gets is from its own YouTube channel. A channel is monetised on YouTube only when it has a minimum of 1000 subscribers. YouTube pays a channel if the channel crosses over 4000 watch hours. In this case, the Zee News YouTube channel has 21.2 million subscribers with 169.89 million views each month. The total net worth of Zee News Channel itself is estimated to be around $40.77 million.

Zee Media - Challenges and Controversy

Zee Media Corporation Limited goes through many challenges as the company runs news channels, which attracts controversies and challenges. The company was involved in spreading wrong and fake news through its Hindi medium channels called Zee News, which landed the company in many controversies and arguments.

In 2020, Nepal Government banned Zee News for charges of defaming the Nepal government.

Zee Media - Mergers and Acquisition

Zee Media and Sony Merger
Zee Media and Sony Merger

In December 2021, Zee Entertainment Enterprises (ZEEL) merged with Sony Pictures Networks India. The revenue of both companies is around Rs 14,000 crore, which makes the country's second-largest media firm.

Punit Goenka, who is the CEO and managing director of ZEEL, will lead the merged company.

Zee Media - Online and Social Media Presence

Zee Media is very active and has a strong social media presence through platforms like Facebook, YouTube, Twitter, and LinkedIn. Its social media pages of the network have around 77 million followers.

Zee Media - Social Media Campaigns

In 2022, Zee Media Corporation Limited (ZMCL) launched one of the biggest elections campaigns on its opinion poll exercise. This campaign was aimed to create awareness and have an interactive session with its audience to increase engagement. Due to this campaign, the Zee News Channel on YouTube saw a 68% increase in viewership.

The marketing head of Zee Media, Anindya Khare says,

"News viewers had stopped believing in the numerous opinion polls conducted around elections simply because it wasn’t representational enough. Our extensive activity and research helped us with this insight, and at ZEE Media we used our resources to create the biggest opinion poll of the election season, with the largest sample size ever. We have created a comprehensive, genuine, and transparent opinion poll in the history of elections and regained the trust of the viewers.”

Zee Media - Competitors

The company competes with other news channels, such as:

  • Star News
  • Aaj Tak
  • NDTV
  • Network 18
  • Music Broadcast
  • Jain Studios
  • TV18 Broadcast
  • Raj Television
  • Sun TV Network

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