Four C Plus and DOT1 merger announced

Indian media & entertainment software and consulting companies consolidate

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Sanjay Hiranandani, chief executive officer of DOT1 Solutions
Sanjay Hiranandani, chief executive officer of DOT1 Solutions

On 12 April 2019, in a simultaneous announcement in Mumbai and New Delhi, 4Cplus (Internet) Company Limited and DOT1 Solutions Private Limited stated that they have entered into a definitive merger agreement. The merger agreement has been approved unanimously by the boards of both companies.

4Cplus established itself over the past 20 years as a quality provider of software solutions to news publishers, digital media companies and broadcasters. The company provides end-to-end technology solutions to its clients. These solutions and services include software development, offshore and onsite software work. 4Cplus has domain expertise in enterprise solutions (ERP), Internet applications, technology solutions and newsroom automation.

DOT1, incorporated in 2014, delivers more than 50 services and products in management consulting, technology and business transformation outsourcing. With the just announced merger, 4Cplus will strengthen DOT1’s industry (media and entertainment) and digital (social, mobility, analytics and robotics process automation) capabilities.

Sanjay Hiranandani, chief executive officer of DOT1 Solutions states, “I am delighted to announce this very important transaction, so early in DOT1’s journey. 4Cplus perfectly fits our strategic ambition and there is a clear meeting of minds amongst us as people. It will give us a new status in the global market, and take further our commitment to vertically integrate within the media and entertainment supply chain. Proof of value is already there to see with both companies coming together, even before this merger, to deliver products and services to large publishing houses in India. This will also give DOT1’s India operations a new scale, with delivery centers across West, South and North India. I am glad to welcome new ‘knowledge products’ (talent) and leaders to DOT1, who share our convictions and professional culture.”

He added, “This merger will allow customers to make a choice on the platforms that add value to their business rather than being compelled to take decisions based on roadmaps of large organizations who fail to understand the compulsions of media organizations.”

Sanjay Gupta, chief executive officer, 4Cplus says, “We are gratified that the company we founded 20 years ago has through this merger developed into a global enterprise of 250+ employees. We are pleased to have found a great partner for the business and are confident that our employees and customers will benefit from the enhanced service and product offerings. We are looking forward to combine our products with the consulting knowledge of DOT1.”

Sanjay Gupta, chief executive officer, 4Cplus
Sanjay Gupta, chief executive officer, 4Cplus

Transaction highlights

Reinforcing sector expertise notably in media and entertainment, 4Cplus brings an attractive portfolio of major products and clients complementary to those of DOT1. This transaction also reinforces both organizations’ positions in the media and entertainment sector, and prompts a faster transition to platform-based solutions.

The merger will enlarge the portfolio of capabilities and offerings such as ERP extension for broadcast and print media, advertising, editorial system and distribution. Consulting capabilities will advise, deliver and optimize across value streams of media asset management, broadcast management and digital newsrooms. Apart from domain knowledge, it brings together a large pool of SAP, Oracle, Java, .Net, Mobility, Portal, Digital and RPA resources across large delivery centers.

It is expected to enhance competitiveness and footprint across the print, broadcast and digital customer base. Additionally, it will bring customer proximity across India and in North America, EMEA and APAC.

2023 promises an interesting ride for print in India

Indian Printer and Publisher founded in 1979 is the oldest B2B trade publication in the multi-platform and multi-channel IPPGroup. While the print and packaging industries have been resilient in the past 33 months since the pandemic lockdown of 25 March 2020, the commercial printing and newspaper industries have yet to recover their pre-Covid trajectory.

The fragmented commercial printing industry faces substantial challenges as does the newspaper industry. While digital short-run printing and the signage industry seem to be recovering a bit faster, ultimately their growth will also be moderated by the progress of the overall economy. On the other hand book printing exports are doing well but they too face several supply-chain and logistics challenges.

The price of publication papers including newsprint has been high in the past year while availability is diminished by several mills shutting down their publication paper and newsprint machines in the past four years. Indian paper mills are also exporting many types of paper and have raised prices for Indian printers. To some extent, this has helped in the recovery of the digital printing industry with its on-demand short-run and low-wastage paradigm.

Ultimately digital print and other digital channels will help print grow in a country where we are still far behind in our paper and print consumption and where digital is a leapfrog technology that will only increase the demand for print in the foreseeable future. For instance, there is no alternative to a rise in textbook consumption but this segment will only reach normality in the next financial year beginning on 1 April 2023.

Thus while the new normal is a moving target and many commercial printers look to diversification, we believe that our target audiences may shift and change. Like them, we will also have to adapt with agility to keep up with their business and technical information needs.

Our 2023 media kit is ready, and it is the right time to take stock and reconnect with your potential markets and customers. Print is the glue for the growth of liberal education, new industry, and an emerging economy. We seek your participation in what promises to be an interesting ride.

– Naresh Khanna

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