This story was written by Staci D. Kramer.
Yesterday, MySpace CEO Cris DeWolfe launched the South Korean version of MySpace; today, COO Amit Kapur is in Mumbai officially launching MySpace India, which has been live since January. Unlike the Korean site, which is in Korean primarily and has been localized considerably in style, MySpace India so far looks like MySpace Anywhere. Nikhil Pahwa, editor of our ContentSutra site in India, interviewed Kapur and Tarun Tripathi, director of marketing and content for India, about the decision to expand in Indiaand to publish in Englishamong other topics. To get a sense of how economical expanding these sites can be, consider this: MySpace has a 5-person team in India right now and plans to expand to 20. The full interview is here. Some excerpts:
Why India? Are monetization pressures forcing MySpace to go international?: Kapur feels there's a strong alignment between MySpace and India - MySpace is a platform for self expression and content is centred around users, and Indians are open and self expressive. India is an economy that's starting to boom, and MySpace wants to be here for it. For mature companies, significant growth is coming from international markets; there is a lot of buzz around pressures of monetization of social media, but..."Look, we've been doing this for four years and we know how to do it. We know how to advertise on a social environment."
On number of users: MySpace India has around half a million users, but they're 30 percent month-to-month for the last two months. Kapur adds that "we'll see Bollywood actors and actresses and Fashion Designers coming and signing up."
News Corp: Kapur says that despite being a News Corp (NYSE: NWS) company, MySpace is not beholden to them on an exclusive basis. They're network-agnostic. However, they have tied up with Channel [V] for a TV show - "Campus Star" with celebrity judges and voting by a MySpace audience.
By Staci D. Kramer