“We wanted to do something we were passionate about” shares Surath Giri, Co-founder of Onion Films Nepal, “and this led us to start Onion Films Nepal, a digital media production company.”
Co-founders Surath Giri and Govinda Siwakoti, initially started Onion Films in 2013 to “promote independent Nepali filmmakers and their movies.” They started by organizing film making workshops, but they quickly realized “that there was a large demand for audio-visual services” and switched their focus. From 2014, they started taking clients and offering audio-visual services. “Till date, we have worked for more than 40 clients and completed more than 100 assignments”, revealed Surath. They still continue giving filmmaking workshops, but according to Surath, these workshops have become their ‘social mission’. “When we started organizing workshops we used to do everything ourselves, but now we also work with NGO’s and INGO’s to organize such workshops. So, far we have done 12 such workshops where we have trained 270 youths in total.”
In this day and age, visual communication and digital media are seen as the most effective means of communication, thus, is rapidly gaining popularity worldwide. In Nepal, more companies are turning to digital media to promote their companies and spread their message. Nevertheless, the founders still suffered a few sleepless nights when they started out. “When we started Onion Films we were scared, I was not sure if we could make it. Since I was previously working as a researcher at the Samridhi Foundation before starting Onion Films, this was a new sector for me. However, Govinda, was a media technology graduate and had worked as an audio-visual officer at Samridhi Foundation for about three years, so, I knew, that technically we were sound. But we had both left our jobs at Samridhi Foundation to start Onion Films, and to follow our passion. So, there was this pressure to succeed.” And it did not take them long to do so. Their high quality of their work quickly started making them popular amongst clients. “I think my experience working for development agencies helped us. A lot of the digital media production companies in Nepal know how to make good videos, but with my background, and experience I could better understand what our clients were looking for. And this gave us an edge amongst our competitors.”
With the investment, Onion Flims aim to start conducting regular professional video editing workshops and expand their team. They also plan to start a marketing campaign to increase their customer base. Plus, to increase their client base, they will reach out to Nepali companies in the private sector and not just limit themselves to the organizations in the development sector. Surath and Govinda also intend to start creating their own content. "We want to create our own content and publish it on YouTube. However, we do not want to create entertainment-related content, but rather an educational web series." Apart from investments they are also looking for an international network that will help them get outsourced post-production work from international clients.