GMM pumping B20m into Change 2561
Churning out content amid competition
GMM Grammy Plc (GMM) is investing 20 million baht to expand its new subsidiary, Change 2561, by increasing content volume to diversify its media portfolio to survive in a dire media environment.
The company is also urging the broadcast regulator to support digital TV media operators by reducing regulatory costs.
"We still believe good quality content can attract audiences on every platform," said Saithip Montrikul Na Audhaya, chief executive of Change 2561 Co, a joint venture of GMM and ThaiBev subsidiary Adelfos.
She said the National Broadcasting and Telecommunications Commission (NBTC) should help reduce high digital TV costs as too many channels compete to attract valuable advertisers.
Reducing the cost of digital TVs not only helps operators but also saves jobs in the media, freeing up capital to produce quality content and attract more viewers, that will in turn increase ad revenue.
"The government should support local content, as is done in South Korea. This creates jobs and the media can be exported to other countries. Such support also increases the quality of content," said Mrs Saithip.
She is concerned the economic and political situation makes advertisers reluctant to spend, adopting a "wait and see" policy for 2019.
Under the plan, Change 2561 will expand more carefully than in the past six months. With 20 million baht, it can produce more content on multiple platforms to serve changing viewer attitudes with content that is not exclusive to GMM, she said.
The company will increase staff from five to 60 people and outsource content to an external production team.
"We will focus on creating content based on true stories to inspire and encourage people," said Mrs Saithip.
She is also vice-chairman of the board for GMM Channel Holding. Previously, Mrs Saithip was chief executive for media business with GMM Grammy.
"My previous role was focused on channel management, but in my new role, I will focus more on content creation. I always have believed content is king," she said.
The company has five business segments -- soap operas and series, TV programmes, show business, on-ground activities and online content.
Soap operas and series make up the majority of revenue (50%). In 2019, GMM25 will produce 11 titles -- five titles for GMM25, ONE31 will receive its first-ever series, PPTV is to receive three and AMARIN TV two. The channel also has the Club Friday Show, which features a variety of celebrity love stories.
The show business segment is expected to contribute 25% of total revenue. Four big concerts are planned -- Si Yak Pak Whan Concert Episode 2562, J-Jetarin, Nadech content and Off Pongsak.
The other 25% will come from on-ground activities and online content that earns revenue from sponsors and advertisers.
Change 2561 has 10 online programmes on its Facebook page, Twitter, Instagram and YouTube among other platforms, such as Pee Any Pee Chod Tua Tor Tau and Christina's Diary.
"Online audiences need shorter, more colourful content that grabs their attention within the first two minutes," said Mrs Saithip.
The company expects 577 million baht in revenue next year.