Eros Media World PLC ("ErosMedia", "Eros" or the "Company") (NYSE: EMWP), a global Indian media and entertainment company, today announced that it is entering into the rapidly growing Saudi Arabian market to capitalize on new opportunities and identify synergies with the various Saudi Arabian government initiatives designed to foster growth in the media and entertainment sector. One of the driving forces behind the growth initiative is the General Entertainment Authority (GEA), which was established by the government of Saudi Arabia in 2016 to help drive Vision 2030, a strategic framework to move away from Saudi Arabia's dependence on oil to diversify its economy and develop public service sectors such as health, education, infrastructure, recreation, media, and tourism. Eros will partner in Vision 2030 and will be the first media company of Indian origin to explore actionable opportunities.
As the first step in this endeavour, Eros has entered into a strategic partnership with Arabia Pictures Group "APG", headquartered in Riyadh, which caters mainly to the MENA region and is focused on content production. Through this partnership, Eros and APG will explore strategic and business opportunities in the film production, technology, and Web3 space exclusively catering to the Indian entertainment industry.
This partnership is pioneering in several ways. It is the first time that an Indian media company has collaborated with a Saudi Arabia-based organisation to develop an all-encompassing entertainment ecosystem jointly. Together the two companies will explore investments in content production, such as end-to-end production, line production, distribution, and more. The companies will also seek to introduce new technologies that can further the growth of the media and entertainment sector. The two companies are already in the advanced stages of testing movie archive digitization and virtual location scouting technologies. With new-age blockchain and related technologies transforming businesses worldwide, the joint entity will focus on building an environment that supports decentralised and autonomous new economy growth creating a more equitable and empowering ecosystem for the entertainment community to thrive.
As a part of its Vision 2030, the Saudi Arabian government plans to transform its film industry into a major economic contributor by investing approximately $6.9 billion in the sector. Saudi Arabia has been encouraging its households to increase spending on cultural and entertainment activities, which has increased from 2.9% to 6% of Gross Domestic Product ("GDP"). The introduction of Web3 and blockchain technology can accelerate this growth further. As per a Gartner report, by 2030, blockchain will be the foundational technology for 30% of global customers with a $3.1 Trillion economy. Eros, with its expertise in media, and Eros Investments' portfolio in blockchain and Web3 businesses, and Arabia Picture Group, with its market understanding and experience, are well placed to lead the sector in this new economy. The collaboration follows Eros Investments' recent announcement to forge a strategic partnership with the Dubai World Trade Centre Authority (DWTCA) to operate under the world's only specialist Virtual Asset Regulatory Authority (VARA), and enable the growth of the Web3 industry and its associated blockchain businesses from Dubai as the Hub.
Abdulelah Alahmary, Chairman of Arabia Pictures Group, says, "The MENA region is keen for creative mediums such as arts and films to play a more prominent role in shaping the economy. This presents a great opportunity for us to use our combined strength and contribute to the sector's growth. He adds, "We are collaborating in the East with Eros' expertise in the new age Web3 and blockchain space gives us an edge, and I am certain that we will build an ecosystem that will transform the media and entertainment industry in the MENA region and beyond towards West."
Chief Executive Officer Roua Almadani stated, "We have always been aspiring to partner with India, the top entertainment creators in the world, and now the dream has come true."
Almadani continued, "I'm proud of the strategic cooperation with Eros Media World PLC, which is the first of its kind in the Arab world."
"This cooperation will create various job opportunities in entertainment production and filmmaking as well as new discovering young talents in the film industry in the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia and the Middle East. We will be revealing more details during a press conference and the joint projects soon," added Almadani.
Commenting on the partnership, Pradeep Dwivedi, Group CEO Eros Media World Plc, says, "Saudi Arabia is a strategic market for global organizations like Eros Media World. We aspire to be a frontrunner in not only getting a foothold in this burgeoning market but also contribute to the economy through our expertise. This partnership with Arabia Picture Group is significant as it allows us to understand the market and introduce new concepts and technologies that are crucial to the growth of the sector in the region. Cultural similarities between India and Saudi Arabia will help accelerate this process and create value for stakeholders."
About Eros Media World Plc
Eros Media World Plc, ("Eros", the "Company") (NYSE: ESGC) is a global media and entertainment company that acquires, co-produces and distributes films, digital content and music across multiple formats such as theatrical, television, OTT digital media streaming and emerging web 3.0 ecosystem to consumers around the world. The Company also owns the leading South Asian OTT platform Eros Now, which has rights to over 12,000 films across major Indian languages. For further information, please visit www.ErosMediaWorld.com.About Arabia Pictures Group
Arabia Pictures group is a leading entertainment company focused on the production and global distribution of film and television content across all platforms. We are focused on building ecosystems of content creation; all of our companies complement each other and contribute towards completing projects from talent development to major film production. We envision to create a "MediaTainment economy" by acting as the root base for innovative cloud and digital services aimed at content creators. Regionally we have major platforms, TVs, theatrical and talent. We are providing the best value for creativity utilizing technology through our existing channels.
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Information provided in this communication includes "forward-looking statements" within the meaning of Section 27A of the Securities Act of 1933, as amended, or the Securities Act, and Section 21E of the Securities Exchange Act of 1934, as amended, and such statements are subject to the safe harbors created thereby. Generally, these forward-looking statements can be identified by the use of forward-looking terminology such as "approximately," "anticipate," "believe," "estimate," "continue," "could," "expect," "future," "intend," "may," "plan," "potential," "predict," "project," "seek," "should," "will", "trending" and similar expressions. Those statements include, among other things, the discussions of the Company's business strategy and expectations concerning its and the Company's market position and future operations. All such forward-looking statements are subject to risks and uncertainties that may cause actual results to differ materially from those that we are expecting, including, without limitation: our ability to successfully and cost-effectively source film content; the Company's ability to achieve the desired growth rate of Eros Now; our ability to maintain or raise sufficient capital; delays, cost overruns, cancellation or abandonment of the completion or release of the Company's films; our ability to predict the popularity of its films, or changing consumer tastes; our ability to maintain existing rights, and to acquire new rights, to film content; our ability to successfully defend any future class action lawsuits we are a party to in the U.S.; anonymous letters to regulators or business associates or anonymous allegations on social media regarding the Company's business practices, accounting practices and/or officers and directors; our ability to recoup the full amount of box office revenues to which it is entitled due to underreporting of box office receipts by theater operators; our dependence on our relationships with theater operators and other industry participants to exploit the Company's film content; our ability to mitigate risks relating to distribution and collection in international markets; our ability to compete with other forms of entertainment; our ability to combat piracy and to protect our intellectual property; our ability to maintain an effective system of internal control over financial reporting; contingent liabilities that may materialize, our exposure to liabilities on account of unfavorable judgments/decisions in relation to legal proceedings involving the Company or its subsidiaries and certain of its directors and officers; our ability to successfully respond to technological changes; our ability to satisfy debt obligations, fund working capital and pay dividends; the monetary and fiscal policies of countries around the world, inflation, deflation, unanticipated turbulence in interest rates, foreign exchange rates, equity prices or other rates or prices; our ability to address the risks associated with acquisition opportunities; risks that the ongoing coronavirus pandemic and its spread, and related public health measures, may have material adverse effects on our business, financial position, results of operations and/or cash flows; uncertainty as to the long-term value of the Company's ordinary shares; the completion of the Company's fiscal 2021 audit and filing of its Annual Report on Form 20-F.
The forward-looking statements contained in this communication are based on historical performance and management's current plans, estimates and expectations in light of information currently available and are subject to uncertainty and changes in circumstances. There can be no assurance that future developments affecting the Company will be those that it has anticipated. Actual results may differ materially from these expectations due to changes in global, regional or local political, economic, business, competitive, market, regulatory and other factors, many of which are beyond the Company's control. Should one or more of these risks or uncertainties materialize or should any of the Company's assumptions prove to be incorrect, the Company's actual results may vary in material respects from what the Company may have expressed or implied by these forward-looking statements. The Company cautions that you should not place undue reliance on any of its forward-looking statements. Any forward-looking statement made by the Company in this communication speaks only as of the date on which the Company makes it. Factors or events that could cause the Company's actual results to differ may emerge from time to time, and it is not possible for the Company to predict all of them. The Company undertakes no obligation to publicly update any forward-looking statement, whether as a result of new information, future developments or otherwise, except as may be required by applicable securities laws.
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