Anish Mehta, who built Cosmos-Maya into an animation juggernaut, is leaving the company to launch a new business venture.
Following a 10-year stint building Cosmos-Maya—India’s most successful animation studio—from a 30-member team to a 1200+ strong animation powerhouse, Anish Mehta has decided to move on from his role as CEO.
Under Mehta’s leadership, the studio has grown multifold, and as CEO and minority shareholder of Cosmos-Maya since 2012, he is credited with achieving a number of milestones not only for the studio but also for the industry at large.
Mehta led the studio’s first foray into original Indian animation IP creation with the launch of Motu Patlu, which is still India’s most successful animation series.
Following that, the studio created over 10,000 half-hours of kids’ animation content across 20+ shows; maintaining a more than 50% market share of the original Indian kids & family content space for a decade.
The studio’s key clients currently include: Nickelodeon, Disney, Cartoon Network, Sony, Amazon Prime Video, Disney+ Hotstar, Netflix, Discovery Kids, Facebook & YouTube.
During Mehta’s tenure, the company grew with four different business streams globally and a revenue and EBITDA growth of 25x+ from 2012 to 2022. Globally he spearheaded efforts towards co-productions with European and other international players, which were able to sell in 100+ countries globally.
But Mehta says his most notable achievement was to attract investment into the business and consistently give investors a profitable exit through a higher valuation of the company. He played an instrumental role in getting private equity investors into the Indian animation business, first with KKR backed Emerald Media and later with TPG affiliate NewQuest Capital Partners.
“I would like to thank Ketan & Deepa, the promoters of Cosmos-Maya for trusting me with the opportunity of growing the company,” Mehta said. “I would also like to extend gratitude to our previous investors, KKR backed Emerald Media, Rajesh Kamat, and angel investor Tilak Sarkar for providing the right guidance and support on this journey.
“It has been a great pleasure working with the current investor, TPG affiliate NewQuest Capital Partners and I wish them and the team of Cosmos-Maya all the very best for future growth and to carry the legacy forward.”
Mehta also led the initiative of building the company’s YouTube network, WowKidz, with 35 channels, which achieved 80 million+ subscribers, and 41 billion+ views worldwide across 10+ languages in a short span of 5 years.
“I feel very passionately about content creators and believe that digital media has offered a rather egalitarian and equalizing platform to all creators,” Mehta said, and hinted that the nature of his next venture will involve digital animation startups.
“I find the best way to express my appreciation is to be able to support and mentor the new generation of digital content creators as they set out to create path-breaking content that will have a positive impact on countless lives of kids & family audiences,” Mehta said. “The intention is to partner with global investors and pioneers to achieve this vision.”
Mehta said he will announce his new venture later this year.