Sutradhar brings ancient Indian stories to kids of today


The culture of reading and listening to folklore, tales from mythology, and more which imbibed Indian values and moral lessons to kids is fading away amid rapid urbanization and a surge in nuclear families in the country. 

Most of this void is now filled by the cartoon channels and also the kids-focused content on the internet, Peppa Pig, Ben & Holly’s Little Kingdom, Disney, and lots more. Indian content makers, however, appear to have missed the bus in terms of a larger impact, though the popularity of content like ‘Chhota Bheem’ and ‘Motu Patlu’ shows the potential. 


Gaurav Tiwari along with Satish Meena and Shaunak Samvatsar are trying to take on this challenge head on with their platform called ‘Sutradhar’. The core of the platform is the rich set of ancient Indian stories from Mahabharata and Ramayana. 

The Jaipur-based media and entertainment firm is focusing on children aged between 4 and 12. It is working towards building an ecosystem-sort wherein it offers content (audio and video), toys and activities. Its current line up includes jigsaw puzzles, audio content, and a new board game called ‘Ranbhoomi’. 

“Our strength is our stories and the messaging. We need to focus on those in the beginning rather than worrying about technical prowess, which will follow with time and effort…,” company CEO Tiwari told Entrackr.

He is optimistic that once the global potential is demonstrated money will also follow. Highlighting the success of movies like Bahubali and RRR, Tiwari added, “We are now also making movies with Rs 500 Cr+ budget.”

Since the launch, Sutradhar’s mobile apps have been downloaded more than 500,000 times. It has also sold more than 2,000 units of game boxes. 

Tiwari added that the company is seeing a good response to the company’s new board game, Ranbhoomi, as well it has already begun creating video content. He added that the company has already released 200 hours of content, which is available on the Sutradhar app and on YouTube. As far as the board game goes, it has sold more than 250 copies since the launch in April this year. 

The objective is to become the one-stop destination for  content and activities for kids of the age 4-12 years, rooted in Indian culture, he further said. 

Sutradhar has already raised Rs 4.3 crore in funding from investors like Titan Capital, Lets Venture, Venture Catalyst and other angels. The company is also in the market to raise more funds, which Tiwari said, will be deployed towards creating high-quality animation, creating more products, and marketing. 

As mentioned above, there is a huge appetite for kids-focused content. Unsurprisingly, it’s a big and pretty much a global market – kids digital advertising market is set to hit the value of $21.1 billion by 2031. In November 2021, Moonbug Entertainment, which owns Baby Shark-famed Cocomelon and Blippi, was acquired by two former Disney executives for nearly $3 billion. 

Even as Western content for children is becoming increasingly popular (due to easy access to YouTube and other OTT platforms), there is a dearth of original Indian content. ChuChu TV, an Indian infotainment channel on YouTube, is somewhat doing well in terms of reach in the country. It is said to have a network of 12 channels, multiple vernacular languages support, and over 60 million subscribers. The likes of Sutradhar have a huge opportunity to tap into this space, given they are consistent with good quality content and products.

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