Webtoon platforms have become an explosive phenomenon across the world growing to US$4.7 billion in 2021 and projected to exceed US$60 billion a year by 2030. Given its immense potential, the digital media startup spun out last year from Graphic India, Toonsutra can now be accessed and enjoyed by all Indian Android and iOS-users. Validating the timing and the potential this opportunity presents for the Indian webtoon market, Sony Innovation Fund recently became an investor in Toonsutra.
Through the Toonsutra app, comic fans can consume some of the best global and local comic content and stories in Hindi, Tamil, Telugu and English languages in easy-to-read vertical scroll format optimised for mobile. Content in Bengali, Marathi, Malayalam and Kannada will also be available soon. Breaking the mold of traditional comic reading, Toonsutra provides readers comics in bite-sized snackable episodes, each of which deliver an enticing narrative leaving the hooked reader anticipating the next thrilling episode.
“Toonsutra plans to spark a new wave of pop-culture entertainment across India connecting millions and building the largest community of fandom across comics, webtoons, animation, genre and fiction,” commented Graphic India co-founder and CEO Sharad Devarajan. “Just as we saw with the streaming video revolution, India’s entertainment audience is excited to experience and experiment with a wide variety of the best content from across the world, and also groundbreaking local originals from homegrown creators. Comics and webtoons are the next big visual storytelling medium for the country and Toonsutra is bringing the highest quality comic stories by the greatest global creators to India’s vernacular languages for the first time.”
The app will offer episodes from different genres including fantasy, romance, mythology, superhero, sci-fi, action and more. Toonsutra’s new storytelling home will showcase web-toon and comic stories from top Indian and global creators, including stories from icons Stan Lee, Grant Morrison, Ryan Pagelow, Shekhar Kapur, Jeevan J. Kang, Mounica Tata, Rohan Chakravarty, Alicia Souza. The platform will also promote emerging rising star creators from across India giving them a home to tell their stories.
“India’s massive 700 million youth market is looking for new, engaging, snackable, high-quality experiences. Toonsutra’s web-toon bite-sized format will appeal to this young consumer who consumes entertainment very differently today. A convenient vertical scroll is native to where everyone is on their phones 24×7!” said veteran mobile and media startup leader Vishal Anand who recently joined as Toonsutra’s co-founder and chief operating officer. “With India’s media and entertainment market expected to grow from $23 billion to $100 billion by 2030, we believe web-toon comics are perfectly positioned to be one of the largest accelerants for that growth,” he added. Previously, as chief product officer and part of the core initial team at Dailyhunt, Anand helped scale one of India’s most successful media platforms to over 100M active users and build and manage their product and tech teams. Most recently Anand was part of the product leadership team at Amazon Web Services.
As readers dive deeper into webtoons, they will earn coins, unlock rewards, and discover hidden bonus surprises and community features. In addition to free daily content, fans can also purchase and binge on episodes for as low as Rs 5, making comics finally accessible to everyone.
The vast library available on Toonsutra includes exclusive content with numerous global partners, including:
Graphic India’s comic stories such as 18 Days, Devi, Shadow Tiger, Dragonfly, The Mighty Yeti and Chakra The Invincible; the epic comics based on Baahubali: The Lost Legends and more.
The vast Archie Comics’ library that will be made available in vernacular languages for the first time, featuring stories about Archie, Betty, Veronica, Jughead and the gang from Riverdale. Just in time to catch up on the original comics that inspired the upcoming The Archies film coming in December to Netflix.
Superhero lovers in India can finally enter the world of Valiant Comics, one of the world’s largest superhero universes, and enjoy hit titles like X-O Manowar, Bloodshot, Harbinger, Ninjak and dozens more.
Cinema lovers can experience the Liquid Comics library with original comics made by some of the world’s most iconic filmmakers including Wes Craven’s Coming of Rage; Barry Sonnenfeld’s Dinosaurs vs. Aliens; Guy Ritchie’s The Gamekeeper; and John Woo’s Seven Brothers to name a few.
Manga fans can enjoy stories from Kenaz, a leading South Korean-based studio that specialises in vertical manga series in popular categories such as love, romance, fantasy, and action with acclaimed titles such as Evil Hunter, Blood Type Love, The Distance between Us, The Scent of Love and more.
Toonsutra will also be putting the spotlight on home-grown creators from India such as Alicia Souza whose designs and comics have brought joy to millions; Mounica Tata who portrays life in India through an intelligent, satirical, and comic lens; and Rohan Chakravarty whose Green Humor comics highlight important environmental topics with hilarious wit; and new Indian creators being constantly added.
Toonsutra’s early backers include some of the biggest names in tech and media such as Rotten Tomatoes co-founder Patrick Lee; Twitch co-founder Kevin Lin; Crunchyroll co-founder Kun Gao; Lightspeed Venture Partners partner Jeremy Liew; Publicis Group fmr. chief growth officer Rishad Tobaccowala; Start Media founder Michael Maher; CreatorPlus co-founder Benjamin Grubbs; Kabam co-founder Holly Lui; 9GAG co-founder Ray Chan; Junglee Games co-founder Sandeep Kumar Sood; and others.