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Interview with Minhaz Lokhandwala (CEO & Founder-Novosol)
Alisha Malik | 02 Apr 2015

Minhaz Lokhandwala is the Founder & Chief Executive Officer in Novosol. Minhaz began Novosol in 2006 and is the Principal Shareholder of the company. Minhaz holds 2 decades of experience in Telco Business coupled with a strong vision, strategy & skill set.

He has held senior operational business management and consulting roles at McKinsey, PBS & Hewlett Packard across US & South- East Asia. He has completed a Bachelors in Physics and MBA (Marketing & Finance) from Rice University, USA in the year 1987. He also has a Diploma in Project Management from IIM, Ahmadabad, India & also a Diploma in Structured Software Development & Architecture. Minhaz is a member of several prestigious associations such as IEEE; MENSA- San Francisco; Singapore Logistics Association; Project Management Institute (USA) & Singapore – India Association.

To set the ball rolling in your court, kindly give us an insight into the concept of Funpack?

OK, so let's come straight to the point. Funpack featuring fresh & engaging content such as Latest Movie Trailers & Reviews, Off-beat Unique Content, Cricket & Football Updates, and much more in high-tech audio-visual format – Funpack entertains, informs & uplifts the viewers. In this uplifted context, the advertiser's message & promotion is brought to the viewer's attention. With a reach of over 1 Crore Mobile Numbers, Multimedia Elements & Interactivity… Funpack delivers superior exposure, impact & leads… in short a unique & superior marketing ROI.

How & when did Funpack originate?

Funpack started in Malaysia 4 years back and with the support of all the Telcos it reached over million users - 25% percent of the population. On the advertising part, all major media companies such as Disney, Sony Pictures, Universal Music Group, 20th Century Fox, StarTV had used it to gain rapid and broad exposure of their new releases. In India, Funpack is used by Red Chillies for the Happy New Year movie promotion. We believe that Funpack offers an unbeatable business case for the entertainment and media industry.

What are the subscribers' charges and spam concerns?

Funpack is free to subscribers, we don't charge from users; it is actually an ad supported service and a permission-based service, so no question of being a spam. Subscribers can stop the service anytime with an SMS.

And why the tagline 'Fun on the Run'?

The Funpack subscribers get unique, interesting, happening and uplifting content, aimed to win a smile. Cricket, Football, Movies, Current Events, Public Service messages and more are presented to users with a twist and attitude. Since, Funpack is delivered straight into the mobile's inbox; the subscribers can access this fun content anytime, anywhere and smile. Hence, the tag 'Fun on the Run'.

How Funpack is different from other digital advertising solutions?

Well, Funpack has many unique aspects: over 10 million reach, mgram tech, which delivers rich media content directly to the phone, Unique 'Fun on the Run" Content, Interaction and Lead Generation, Superior visibility as compared to any other BTL platform and most importantly, a superior ROI

With its potentially huge mobile reach, visibility, impact and interaction - Funpack will change the marketing. We are currently working to expand our reach to 25 million and there is no reach why Funpack cannot reach all Indian mobile users. Presently no other digital advertising service has these capabilities or possibilities.

What kind of campaigns would you suggest for Bollywood?

Well, 'Win Free Tickets' is very effective. The contests asking for 'Slogans or Quiz Responses' generate, verify high exposure and engagement, higher engagement greatly increases the likelihood that the subscribers will buy the products or tickets.

How does the advertiser track the campaign? Is there any reporting system?

Novosol believes in 'Complete Transparency' and Funpack provides an online reporting mechanism, which an advertiser can access by logging-in with their ids and passwords. And, once logged in advertisers can view……Daily summary of Funpack delivered with their Ads, Daily Summary of Funpack retrieved and viewed with their Ads, Details of SMS Responses and Interactions (if enabled by advertisers). All these reports are backed by Telco logs and viewable for audit.

 Are there any other benefits to Bollywood?

There are many benefits, being a publisher we review movies, rate item songs, cover celebs, events and awards. Thus for added exposure, we can cover the Movie on Funpack and on our MoMoviez.com publication. We also offer banner ads on our various momags- mocricket.com, mofutbol.com, momoviez.com and mosportz.com, which provide an additional 12 million reach in India, Malaysia and Indonesia.

Lastly tell us about other Funpack advertisers?

Funpack has recently been launched in India, yet our list of advertisers includes Samsung, Dominos, Dabur, Red Chillies and Foresight Opticals.