Wattpad has announced a content partnership with Malaysia-based streaming service iflix to co-produce Wattpad stories for iflix users in Asia, the Middle East, and Africa.
Over the next year, iflix and Wattpad will co-produce original movies based on Wattpad stories from Indonesia. Wattpad noted that it will use machine learning to identify stories and trends to produce as iflix origianl films under the brand iflix Originals.
Wattpad said the partnership will give iflix access to over six million original Indonesian stories on Wattpad. The productions from the partnership will be added to iflix’s slate of original content and help the company expand its lineup of iflix Originals.
“This deal represents the future of entertainment, where technology and data converge with new voices in storytelling to transform how great content gets made and distributed.”
“All over the world, entertainment companies are recognizing the need to find original stories from new voices,” said Aron Levitz, head of Wattpad Studios. “This deal represents the future of entertainment, where technology and data converge with new voices in storytelling to transform how great content gets made and distributed. Working with iflix, we can bring our millions of passionate users in Indonesia and Southeast Asia exactly what they want: local stories that they already love and can’t wait to see adapted for the screen.”
Wattpad’s partnership with iflix builds on the company’s mission to expand its entertainment and publishing efforts in the Asian market. In March, Wattpad CEO Allen Lau told BetaKit about Wattpad’s push into Asia by leveraging the expertise of Tencent, the largest tech company in Asia that participated in Wattpad’s $61.25 million round in January.
In April, Wattpad Studios’ announced that Dexter Ong will act as its head of Asia for Wattpad Studios to oversee the expansion in Asian markets.
Wattpad already has a major presence in certain Asian markets such as the Philippines, where it launched a partnership with the TV5 network through Wattpad Presents to co-produce 250 episodes representing 76 Wattpad stories. The company currently has over 65 million users globally, with more than 17 million in Southeast Asia.
“With Wattpad, we now have the opportunity to work with thousands talented Indonesian writers to bring their stories to life.”
“Storytelling is the bedrock of all great entertainment,” said Sean Carey, chief content officer of iflix. “With Wattpad, we now have the opportunity to work with thousands talented Indonesian writers to bring their stories to life for millions of iflix users in Indonesia, and broadly across our 30 markets worldwide. With traditional distribution and platform requirements no longer a constraint and deep data and analytics available to measure performance and engagement, this deal allows us to create exciting original productions from hugely popular, local stories.”
In June, Wattpad appointed Lindsey Ramey as Wattpad Studios’ director of content development and production. Wattpad’s current partnerships include Universal Cable Productions, eOne, CW Seed, Hachette Romans, and HarperCollins Children’s Books, Sony Pictures, and others.