In film, advertising is rapidly becoming a great place for brands to collaborate with movies, characters and story-telling. To optimise the equation of expense, integration and impact, Mofam, a financial services company is launching ‘Bfund’, a fund partner to consumer brands to convert their recurring expense for in-movie product placements into a returnable investment. Brands currently incur an expense per movie to tacitly make their brand visible in the movie hoping for the brand to reach a large viewer base. Bfund takes funds from brands only in first year, and rotates it multiple times over a 5-year tenure and return the same with accumulated NAV at the end of fund life.
To take this unique fund to the India advertising market, Bfund is collaborating with GroupM’s Mindshare, India’s largest media and marketing investment agency. Through this alliance, Mindshare clients will get a first-mover advantage in access to product placement in theatrical releases at a lower cost.
“Product placement in theatrical releases represents an increasingly valuable way for brands to reach targeted consumers”, said CVL Srinivas, Country Manager, WPP India and CEO, GroupM South Asia. “By creating a mechanism for marketers to collaborate with film producers at early development stages in film making, innovative and impactful brand integrations can be conceived and developed.”
Prasanth Kumar, CEO, Mindshare South Asia, commented, “Cinema is a uniquely immersive medium and represents an opportunity for a brand to get noticed with undivided attention. We are excited to deliver to our clients a real competitive advantage in this medium.”
Bfund is targeting Rs 120 Crores fund size for Bollywood movies and another Rs 80 Crore fund for Tollywood movies. Bfund expects to start deployment from both fund by next quarter and will primarily look at star-rated projects. Investment size can be up to Rs 20 Cr per project.
Started by marketing, media and procurement veteran, Raja Peter and career investment management professional and former head of Private Equity at Essel Finance, Sumit Mody, Bfund is a scalable solution by Mofam that helps identify movie projects, brand slots within scripts and creative leverage in feature films across the industry.
Commenting on this, Peter said, “Marketers the world over look to maximize brand awareness at lowest cost; Bfund is that vehicle for cinema in India. Bfund will work closely with brands to ensure a brand is ensconced within a choice movies and genres. Our initiative will help deliver deeper brand integration across multiple movies at significantly lower CPM in this critical medium of popular culture.”
Mody said, “Bfund will primarily make equity investment in Bollywood movies across development stages including where most producers rely on high cost unstructured financing to get things started. We feel that by lowering the unit economics for in-movie product placement without changing the absolute amount going to the movie producers, Bfund is a win-win proposition delivering incremental financial and media value to both the brands and the movie producers.”