Amagi, a Bengaluru-based SaaS platform that allows TV networks and content owners to distribute and monetize content across multiple platforms, became a unicorn in March 2022 after raising $95 million funding.
Srividhya Srinivasan, Baskar Subramanian, and Srinivasan KA set out in 2008 to revolutionize global content distribution and monetize the media sector. After their previous firm, Impulsesoft, was bought by NASDAQ-listed SiRF; they co-founded Amagi.
Baskar Subramanian says, “In retrospect, it appeared to be a decent decision, but it was a major decision at the time.” We had one firm with a revenue of Rs 100 crore and another with less than Rs 5 crore. “We were shutting down a firm worth a hundred crores and building a company from the ground up,” he added.
A forward-looking business plan
“We were searching for an opportunity where we could replace the hardware that a conventional TV station utilizes for video operations with a complete software package and perform everything on the cloud,” he says.
The Amagi team made this tough decision by their intuition that streaming or over-the-top (OTT) services would play a more significant role than traditional TV services, and legacy media businesses would have to adjust to this transformation. This encouraged the team to make their decision firm.
Amagi shifted from geo-targeted TV commercials concentrating on the Indian market to a cloud-based corporation, mainly concentrating on the US, which provides approximately 75 percent of its income, gambling on these futuristic market trends — the company leaped five years ahead of its time.
The Journey So Far
Even though Amagi became the first cloud-based SaaS media tech business to become a unicorn in the country, the team had to overcome several hurdles and make difficult decisions.
The co-founders had to first persuade the funders. Amagi has raised close to $40 million while exploring a turnaround.
Secondly, the startup had to cut its employee strength, and thirdly, it needed to persuade both internal and external stakeholders that it was on the right track.
“Everyone was having a difficult time at the moment.” “I believe that the investors, employees, and others we let go would have had far more difficult times than we did,” adds Baskar.