Started off as an independent portal addressing the pain points of artists, Paintcollar has nagged licensing rights for the most popular home-grown franchise Bahubali. Started by four engineers, the brand believes in opting for the licensing rights wherein its artists have creative freedom, states Akash Arun, CMD, Paintcollar.
Talk to us about the inception and journey of Paintcollar.
Paintcollar started up in September 2014with the concept of connecting art with lifestyle. We provide independent platform for independent creators struggling to get the right recognition and enable them to monetize through their content. Since all of us -- the four co-founders -- are all engineers, we try to bridge the gap between creators and consumers by using technology. We created a portal that lets the artists upload their artwork and in no time they are ready with SKUs and the best part is we provide complete financial and creative freedom to them. They can also define their profit margin which is coupled with the base price, set by Paintcollar to release the final pricing of the product. This base pricing includes the cost of manufacturing, packaging, and delivering the product. Currently we have around five thousand artists across the globe.
How do you differentiate yourself from others players operating in similar space?
Most of these platforms ask for a submission and have a campaign based system wherein they ask you to set a figure and it is only after that figure is achieved, they start manufacturing and delivering. For customers and artists, uncertainty is the biggest factor in such as case as both are not sure if set number will be achieved. We are a print-on demand portal and follow just-in-time approach. We manufacture and ship the product as soon as we get the order. This enables us to print or manufacture even a single piece and never be out of stock.
Tell us about your association with Bahubali franchise
Earlier we were doing merchandise for the movie Shivaay which came to us because of our huge collection of Shiva art. The designs were brilliant and the Shivaay team wanted to communicate the concept of movie through our artists. While we were working for Shivaay, we were approached by Bahubali team and from there we joined hands. This deal based on revenue-sharing model, is valid for tenure of one year.
What is your take on potential of Bollywood licensing in India?
Licensed merchandise in India, when it comes to Bollywood, has not picked up the pace as it has in overseas markets. Most of the sales happen when the cast and crew promote it through their social media accounts and they talk about it. Instead Shivaay team wanted to communicate the concept of the movie and tagline ‘The Creator, The Protector & The Destroyer’. Whenever we enter a deal like this, we ensure that what is the potential of brand and where can our artists help into creating the design.
What other brands you are eying at for such associations?
We look for two major factors – opportunity for brand to show itself and concept behind it. With Bahubali, there are lot of elements that have been used including a lot of sketches, structures etc. So any movie that we collaborate with, should have elements that our artists can play around with. Generally, in licensing deals, a style guide is given to the brands. However, we look for the deals wherein our artists can get some space and freedom to create their own concepts. It might be following the style guide, but with creative freedom.