VOD service Viki, which specializes in bringing Asian movies and TV series to global audiences, is about to dip its feet into the market of original short-form content from indie creators.
The San Fransisco-based company has partnered with South Korean media co CJ E&M to launch a new Creator category, which will feature exclusive content from 12 YouTube and other social-platform creators (all Korean).
Influencers,including Ivan Lam, Ricky Kazaf, and Heyitsfeiii, will now have channels on Viki.com, where they will regularly upload video covering music, fashion, pop culture, food and more.
Tammy H. Nam, CEO of Viki, told StreamDaily the move comes as Viki (which already host movie and TV categories) looks to broaden its audience appeal among global millennials.
“Our data shows that the Viki viewers are really lifestyle oriented. They love fashion, culture, travel, beauty…They love the people who are setting trends, reporting on trends and commenting on trends,” she said.
And though Viki specializes in Asian content, — particularly from Korea, China and India — viewership on the platform is international.
“And that’s reflected in our creators,” she said, noting that content available through the Creator category will span languages.
“CJ has a really great western-meets-eastern aesthetic that is kind of similar to Viki,” said Nam. “Our viewers are very diverse, which is reflected in the content we currently have, and this just naturally complements what they gravitate to.”
The inaugural slate of creators has a combined audience of 40 million viewers across social platforms. Nam said the company expects to sign more creators in the coming months as it looks to strike partnerships outside of Korea.
She said Viki’s creator channels will remain curated “for now” (rather than allowing anyone to create and upload content). However, she said, the program may expand as the company gauges audience reaction.
Viki isn’t the only VOD provider to diversify its offerings as of late — Amazon recently unveiled its plans for Amazon Instant Video, a free, ad-supported platform where creators can upload content (which has to be vetted and approved by Amazon) to be viewed by Amazon Prime customers.
Viki’s ad-supported content is free to watch. The company also offers subscription upgrade options for ad-free viewing.
Pictured: The new creators section on the Viki.com interface