Born On: 8th June, 1956
Born In: Bombay
Ronnie Screwvala is a self made man and an iconic figure in the networking media industry. The CEO and founder of the UTV group he has been one among many others to first introduce cable television in Mumbai. From a cable operator to a media giant he has not only reached the pinnacle of success but also overcome many struggles to survive in the entertainment networking industry. He has been the pioneer in adopting a modern corporate studio approach to film production, which has helped him grow step by step, reaching for the stars all the way. With his decision to back films that are entraining and content heavy, his production house has carved a niche for itself in the Indian and global market. In the recent years, Ronnie has established a higher market value by partnering with international media giants such as Walt Disney, Fox Searchlight, Sony and Overbrook Entertainment with the view to explore and extend his international reach. Read on to know more about Ronnie Screwvala and his story of success.
Like most business capitalists Ronnie also commenced his career by setting up a cable TV networking company in Mumbai, the firm was established in 1981. It started out as a cable network that provided only three hours of uninterrupted viewing of films by means of a cable service. The service was exclusively restricted to homes that were situated in an affluent locality known as Cuffe Parade, for a nominal monthly fee of Rs. 200. In a short span of time the business increased many folds and proved to be in constant demand among the residents in the area. The venture also provided Ronnie with the sufficient capital for his future endeavor. This in turn saw him making advertisements and producing films and selling airtime on India's only national network known as Doordarshan. Soon after he was seen producing TV serials, his television dramas 'Lifeline' and 'Shanti' were an instant success among many housewives in 1994. In 1990, Ronnie established UTV Software Communications. The entertainment house was actively involved in production, distribution of movies and television family programs and web content. It was only in the year 1996 when the production house actually shifted its focus on film distribution and a year later it produced its first motion film "Dil Ke Jharoke Main". Thereafter, Ronnie decided to enter into television broadcasting, he launched Hungama children television channel. The channel featured Japanese animated shows and other regional language shows. This move proved to be a well thought of one as it put UTV on the top of the pile, surpassing Disney and Time Warner in 2004. Since then, Ronnie has launched many other television channels such as UTV Bindass, UTV Action, UTV World Movies, UTV Movies, etc. In 2007, his company also undertook making of gaming software and content. In the recent years he has been responsible for the growing associations with Hollywood with the intention of going global. Ronnie has co-produced movies like 'I Think I Love My Wife', 'The Happening' and 'The Namesake'. These movies proved to be a success. In 2005 when the Ronnie's company's top management publicly traded it in the stock market, it witnessed extensive diversification in just three years. Ronnie, thus, has only set a benchmark for other upcoming entertainment companies.
Achievements And Awards
Ronnie's achievement since the beginning of his career is a list that continues defying all odds. From a small cable provider to a media giant, he has surely come a long way. He has been responsible for establishing his presence in television, film making and distribution, animation, broadcasting, gaming, partnerships, joint ventures and the building of subsidiaries. His media organization has won several awards for the movies that were produced under his banner. Some of the films are Rang De Basanti, Khosla Ka Ghosla, Life In A Metro, A Wednesday, Fashion, Dev D, Kaminey, Rajneeti, and the very recent Delhi Belly. Most of these films were not just commercial successes at the box office, but also content heavy. This set them apart from the rest. Movies like Rang De Basanti and Jodhaa-Akbar proved to be commercial blockbusters in the Indian market which took UTV Motion Pictures Ltd. to new heights.
Ronnie is married to Zarina who is also the co-founder and one of the business exceutives of UTV. The couple live in the posh Breach Candy locality in Mumbai.
1956: Was born in Bombay.
1981: He began his career as a local cable operator.
1990: UTV Software Communications was established by him.
1994: By this year, had already ventured into television serials.
1996: He ventured into film production.
2005: His company went public by trading in the stock market.
2004: He had earned the number one spot among other children's channels such as Disney and Time Warner.
2007: His company also ventured into the video gaming sector.