|Industry Media conglomerate|
Key people Mahesh Samat (MD)
Parent organization The Walt Disney Company
|Area served India|
Website Disney India Website
Founded August 1993
|Type Subsidiary of a Public company|
Divisions Disney Consumer Products Disney Interactive Disney Media Networks Disney Studios Disney Live Entertainment
The Walt Disney Company India (simply Disney India) is the Indian subsidiary of American Media Conglomerate The Walt Disney Company, and is a premier entertainment company in India. The Walt Disney Company (India) is a public limited company, which develops and produces motion pictures and videos for children. The company is based in Mumbai, India and operates as a subsidiary of Walt Disney Company.
Walt Disney India was formed in August 1993 with licensing agreement as a joint venture partnership between The Walt Disney Company and Modi Enterprises. Disney filed in October 2001 with the Foreign Investment Promotion Board to create a wholly owned subsidiary company to launch the Disney Channel in India. The Department of Industrial Policy and Promotion granted Disney an initial approval for the subsidiary but with Modi protesting due to similarities to their joint venture. When the 10 year licensing agreement ended, Modi and Disney could not come to a new agreement, thus ending the joint venture agreement in August 2003.
Walt Disney Television International (Asia Pacific) took over distribution of content in September 2003 to STAR Movies, AXN and HBO plus 29 hours of children's programs per week to DD Metro, Eenadu, SET, Star Plus and StarWorld.
The Walt Disney Company (India) Private Limited (WDCI) started operations in July 2004 based in Mumbai. On 17 December, Walt Disney Television International India launched the Disney Channel and Toon Disney channel with three language feeds (English, Tamil and Telugu). The channels are to be distributed by the Star Group. WDCI planned to initially focus on its channel operations before expanding in to other areas. In the long term, a Disney theme park in India is possible as land has been reportedly found on the outskirts of Delhi. Also in December and partnered with Indiagames, the Walt Disney Internet Group released Disney games, wallpapers and ringtones in the market which is also available on AirTel. In 2005, Disney Consumer Products (DCP) has begun working with various Indian retail outlets to establish Disney Corners within the outlets to sell licensed merchandise. In August, Funskool India and Disney entered in a contract for Funskool to sell Disney Princess products in India.
In July 2006, Disney India acquired a controlling stake in Hungama TV from UTV Software Communications Limited while also taking a 14.9% share in UTV. In 2008, the company took an additional 17.5% share in UTV.
On 26 September 2006, the Disney Jeans brand was launched under license to Indus Clothing, who planned to open 30 Disney Jean stores by the end of 2007. In October, DCP franchised to Ravi Jaipuria Corporation the rights for five years to set up 150 Disney Artist brand stores and wholesale under the Disney Artist brand Disney character branded greeting cards, stationary, arts, crafts and party product in India, Nepal, Sri Lanka, Bangladesh and Maldives.
Disney Publishing Worldwide (India), a division of Walt Disney India, announced a licensing agreement in April 2009 with local publisher Junior Diamond to publish Disney comic books, in both English and Hindi. Jetix/Toon Disney switch over in India to Disney XD on 14 November.
In May 2011, Disney and UTV agreed to co-produce Disney branded family films with both handling creative function and UTV producing, marketing and distributing the films. Walt Disney Company (South East Asia) Pvt Ltd. in July 2011 offered to purchase the public shareholders' stakes with approval given by the Cabinet Committee on Economic Affairs for them to increase their ownership. In February 2012, Disney announced the completion of the acquisition of UTV with UTV Chief Executive Officer Ronnie Screwvala becoming Managing Director of TWDC India replacing Mahesh Samat, who joined the company in 2007 from Johnson & Johnson.
Disney India launched its Live Entertainment operations in 2015 with the production of Beauty and the Beast musical to be show from October to December in Mumbai and Delhi.
Disney India indicated in August 2016 that it was shutting down UTV Pictures, its Hindi film production unit, and focusing only on distribution of its Hollywood films. Disney India managing director Siddharth Roy Kapur also indicated he would let his contract lapse on January 1, 2017. On November 28, 2016, Mahesh Samat was to return as managing director four year after he left the company.
Disney Channel India
Disney Channel India has adopted a 360 degree blanket approach for marketing and promoting its new property amongst its target groups. Disney Channel (India) is also running locally acquired content such as Shararat and Son Pari and is now also experimenting with Bollywood content to draw in a larger audience.
The following films were produced by Walt Disney Pictures(India)