Innovating Curation with Vidinterest: From getting featured by Tech in Asia to partnering with youtubedownloader.com

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Innovating Curation with Vidinterest: From getting featured by Tech in Asia to partnering with youtubedownloader.com

  

With speedy development of information and communication technology, video streaming service has grown concurrently. The no. of videos viewed on just YouTube per year is staggeringly 1806.75 billion (Source: www.statisticbrain.com). The other platforms boast huge figures too, though small compared to Youtube: the no. of videos viewed on Dailymotion per year is 3 billion (Source: advertising.dailymotion.com), and that on Vimeo per year is 85.8 billion (Source: expandedramblings.com).

And these numbers can only be expected to increase. As such, blogger Nirajan Bom Malla, inspired by Pinterest, ideated Vidinterest in 2012 as a video curation and discovery platform to fill the gap of discovering video content in this ever-increasing world of technology. The website has been helping curators and publishers use this website to create a playlist by bookmarking videos from YouTube, Vimeo and Dailymotion in a single platform since then.

 

Solving one’s own problem

Nirajan, 26, started his career as a blogger in 2006. He had a web/tech blog enbeeone3.com, and he was also domaining and flipping when he completed Diploma in Computing in 2008 in Singapore.

His idea for Vidinterest rose when he was facing problems himself. He was finding it hard to curate videos in his blog to display them to the right audience at the right time. “It was a one day decision, to be honest,” shares Nirajan, “I was working with websites on a project for a curating company but the project couldn’t succeed.” So he started vidinterest.com under his web/tech company Surfmandu Nepal. “I looked through the registered domains, chose Vidinterest, started working on it. And within two months, I had the prototype ready and launched it.”

By then, Nirajan was a blogger with two websites (enbeeone3.com and detechter.com), but lacked the knowledge about how a startup runs; he learned it eventually. As a blogger and flipper, he did have knowledge about how a website should be run and what kind of websites work, and worked accordingly. But he learned the business aspect of it gradually, and Tech in Asia was a motivating factor for the same.

 

Motivation from Tech in Asia

Tech in Asia was a catalyst in taking things forward. He attended the Tech in Asia conference and he also knew people from Tech in Asia, which had grown from its inception since 2009 to 2012. They featured the story of his venture, after which many investors were keen on investing. It motivated him to take the website to next level while also building an international network for himself. “They covered the story in August 2012, and by March youtubedownloader.com approached me to purchase the website. We settled as partners with them investing in Vidinterest,” says Nirajan.

"They covered the story in August 2012, and by March youtubedownloader.com approached me to purchase the website. We settled as partners with them investing in Vidinterest,” says Nirajan

 

Handling Finances

Nirajan has been able to continue providing curators with a video discovery platform through seed funding, partnerships and foreign investment. A couple of years into the business Nirajan received an offer from Nest Ideas, a startup incubator based in Hong Kong, to buy the website. They were initially very eager to purchase but given the political instability in Nepal, two of their seven team members doubted to invest. Nirajan was seeking funds for hosting the server then, and to his luck, he received IBM’s cloud service under their incubation program free of cost for that year. After IBM, the server hosting cost has been waived with the free service from Rackspace, and he is currently in talks with Digital Ocean for a similar partnership.

 

Vidinterest today

Vidinterest’s target market includes curators and publishers and the product has been designed likewise to increase viewership. At present, the website has more than 5000 registered users (curators) majorly from the US, India, Vietnam and different parts of Europe. The daily 10,000 visitors do not require registration to view or post a comment, which has helped create an engaging audience base for publishers. The audience does not have to leave a website to view the ad on the publisher’s blog either. Publishers generate revenue from the videos they use on their blogs through Vidinterest, 70% of which is shared by the website. 

Vidinterest has been striving to keep up with the changes in the field of technology. When Vidinterest started, content discovery was the big thing and products were made according to market demand, some of which are still running and others have shut down. “Today is the age of experience rather than age of information. The core concept of the website since its inception remains but we have to constantly be on our toes to adapt to the changing dynamics.” In the complicated field of technology, Nirajan has been working with his team to create a simple and valuable experience for publishers as well as viewers.

Today is the age of experience rather than age of information. The core concept of the website since its inception remains but we have to constantly be on our toes to adapt to the changing dynamics.

But they struggle to meet at the same wavelength to bring new ideas into the mix. “I’ve had trouble retaining staff and developers as they opt to go abroad in search of higher pay and better opportunities,” says Nirajan.

 

Boon and bane of being an entrepreneur in Nepal

Nirajan finds both pros and cons to operate a venture based in Nepal. While the development cost is lower and surviving without revenue is easier in one’s own nation, business scenario in Nepal gets on his nerves, sometimes. “Nepali people fear to invest in businesses other than land or real estate,” says Nirajan, “They do not understand technological products. People here look for security because our government is unstable, and that adds to an entrepreneur’s struggle here.”

He adds, “Not everyone will understand your product. You have to make them envision your dream. I have received investments simply because people had faith in my passion.”

 

The drive

Nirajan has been investing his time and effort on Vidinterest for four years now, despite not earning much revenue. “Finances should not stop you from pursuing your dreams. They are only an aid along the way. As long as you are determined, and you know how to present your idea to investors, raising money will be easy,” says Nirajan, “People say that they are waiting for the right time. The time is right when you decide to begin. Of course there are factors you need to take into consideration before you begin, but don’t let money intimidate you.”

People say that they are waiting for the right time. The time is right when you decide to begin.

 

Vidinterest in Future

To ensure better experiences for its users, Nirajan has made product developments for sponsored content, which will also introduce revenue streams to Vidinterest, but is waiting for launch in search of partners. He also has other projects in the pipeline under Surfmandu Nepal and believes that his business is running in accordance to the business plan he developed four years ago, before the inception of Vidinterest.  If things go as planned, he will probably sell the website in the coming year, when opportunity arises. 

Nirajan started Vidinterest with a big dream which has been his motivation in creating a valuable experience to the website’s users. He expresses, “Nobody wants to take a risk. When 1% takes that risk and it works out well, the 99% follows. I want to build a multi-million dollar company and be one of that 1% to inspire the rest 99% and shift the dream of Nepali developers from earning thousands of dollars working abroad to working in their own nation. I want to set an example.”

 

Comments

  • Guest
    NepTech Monday, 20 June 2016

    Still waiting you see the future of Vidinterest.
    Amazing concept, but I've observed that it's growing pretty slow for quite some time now.

    Reply Cancel
  • Juliana Shrestha
    Juliana Shrestha Thursday, 11 August 2016

    Yes, it has been a tough time especially after the great earthquake. But they are catching up quite well.

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Guest
Guest Sunday, 19 August 2018