Digital City goes mobile

Dubai-based company to offer digital content to mobile users in MENA region.

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By  Aaron Greenwood Published  October 10, 2006

The Dubai-based Koohiji Group has struck a deal with digital content provider Hungama Mobile to provide entertainment programming to mobile operators across the Middle East and North Africa (MENA). As per the agreement, Hungama Mobile has appointed Digital City, a new business unit established by the Koohiji Group, as its exclusive distributor for Bollywood, Hollywood and related digital entertainment content. “Mobile service subscribers in the Middle East have to date been deprived of choices and easy access to the latest digital entertainment content for their mobile devices,” said SS Rajkumar, vice chairman and CEO of the Koohiji Group. “As exclusive content distributors for Hungama Mobile, Digital City will bridge that gap and serve as a one stop shop for all content resellers and mobile operators offering digital mobile entertainment in the UAE and MENA region.” Koohji Group was established in 1985 as a trading house for consumer electronics goods, but later branched into mobile communication products, establishing the highly successful Globalnet distribution arm in the mid-1990s. The company secured the Motorola MENA distributor of the year award in 2005. “Worldwide, non-voice service continues to be the key source of growth for operators,” explained M. Nadar, GM of Digital City. “Data-centric services, especially with mobile entertainment content, are the way to increase ARPU.” According to Saleem Mobani, COO of Hungama Mobile, consumer demand for Bollywood and related content has risen dramatically in recent years. “Hungama Mobile is the world’s largest aggregator of Indian entertainment content,” said Mobani. “As exclusive content distributors, Digital City will have access to more than 80% of all Bollywood and Indian digital entertainment content.” Hungama Mobile’s global digital distribution network covers 50 operators and partners across 20 countries including the US and UK. Hungama Mobile delivers entertainment content to wireless subscribers utilising Java, Brew and i-Mode platforms. It holds the exclusive global license to distribute all Bollywood and related audio and visual content for T-Series and Sony Pictures Entertainment amongst others, including the entire James Bond film back-catalogue. It also provides digital entertainment content in 14 Indian languages. The range of content that will be made available by Digital City includes ringtones, MMS still and animated images, wallpapers, screensavers, games, applications, video and audio clips, and interactive content including movie trailers, synopses, reviews and previews. Digital City will enable subscribers to download the latest Bollywood songs from legitimate music and entertainment sources for playback via their MP3 players, PCs and home music systems. Users will be able to access content via their network operators or web or WAP portals provided by authorised content resellers using their credit cards, special prepaid cards or premium SMS facilities.

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