‘As a young, brown female producer, I want to make something globally successful; our own Brown Panther instead of a Black Panther’, says Guneet Monga at Yuvaa’s Business of Gen Z event, The Collab
India, 2nd June 2023: Yuvaa, India’s fastest growing Gen Z-driven media, impact and insights organisations launched India’s first business of Gen Z event, The Collab, to mark its 5th anniversary in working for and with Gen Z across online and offline platforms.
With the mission of empowering the youth by ‘making important things interesting’ for them, Yuvaa envisions facilitating meaningful conversations and impactful initiatives through their work in digital content and campus spaces.
India’s top brands and organisations like YouTube, Spotify, Tinder, L’Oreal Paris, Maybelline, UNICEF Yuwaah, Dasra, RPG, Diageo, Breakthrough, BBDO and more came together at The Collab to talk about how to work with and for young Indians. Among the conversations, panels, fireside chats and ‘Ask Me Anything’, experts in Gen Z culture and branding, along with Gen Z young Indians themselves, gave many insights on what it takes to create meaningful work for a new generation of young Indians. Yuvaa also released its first insights report ‘Not All Gen Zs, and had a ‘Gen Z board review’ panel where young folks from various industries came together to talk about both the report and the event.
One of the most important panels at The Collab was that of Oscar-winning film producer, Guneet Monga who shared her views on the art of generating content with a vision for young Indians. When asked what are the kind of stories that should be told to and for Gen Zs, Guneet said, “The dream is to tell our stories to the rest of the world, how we talk, how we feel, what we do. We’re constantly trying to break stereotypes through our films. For me it’s really important how women are represented on screen because it impacts us. It becomes a living room or bedroom conversation and affects communities. It is our absolute responsibility on how we show women on screen. Also, one doesn’t have to underline the emotions. If you let the story tell itself, the emotions will travel, they will be felt. As a young, brown female producer, I also want our films to travel globally like Black Panther, Avatar, or Titanic. And on some level I have experienced this with The Lunchbox, which had positive international reception, competing with our superstar films outside of India. There is a possibility of taking our stories to global platforms. We will get there soon.”
At the event, Yuvaa also gave its audience a sneak peek into their upcoming properties like India’s first chat series on masculinity ‘Be A Man, Yaar’ (feat. Vicky Kaushal, Nakuul Mehta, Naseeruddin Shah, Zakir Khan, among others) in partnership with Rohini Nilekani Philanthropies; The ‘You Grow, Girl’ Yuvaa Roadshow with Navya Nanda and L’Oreal Paris India, and Yuvaa’s flagship LGBTQ+ event, The Pride Class 2023, partnered by YouTube Shorts.
Navya, who appeared at the event virtually, shared her views on the need to build offline GenZ communities. She said, “Yuvaa is a platform that shares important information in a way that young people can relate to and understand. It’s all about giving a voice to our generation and the things we care about in the digital world. The world is changing fast, especially in entertainment and the content we consume, but Yuvaa is all about highlighting issues that really matters and making a difference. I’m so thrilled to join Yuvaa on the You Grow, Girl campus initiative, listen to young voices and create safe spaces for young people to be themselves.”
The Collab also showcased talent and artists across content spaces including one of India’s first Dalit stand-up comedians to do a national tour, Manjeet Sarkar, who made the audience erupt in waves of laughter through bits of his show ‘Untouchable’ . Niharika NM, India’s top young digital creator, also spoke at length about the anxiety of being a young person and how ‘Gen Z should not be seen as a separate species’.
Speaking about the nature and popularity of content among Gen Z, Sameer Nair, CEO, Applause Entertainment, said, “Happy birthday Yuvaa. To provide some context, people, in my opinion, devalue experience because youth audiences are young, impatient and know exactly how the world will be changed. I view experience as data; it implies experience in life and the workplace. We frequently find ourselves drowned by a lot of data and are unsure of what to do with it. Experience helps translate that data into actionable patterns, to see if we can use it in a different way. It’s worked for me so far; let’s see where this thought process takes me since I’ve spent my entire life attempting to entertain a youthful audience.”
Speaking about The Collab, Nikhil Taneja, Co-Founder of Yuvaa, said, “After 5 years of creating meaningful content, offline safe spaces in colleges, campaigns with India’s most respected brands and non profits, we were so proud to bring over a 100+ organisations and partners together for India’s first ever ‘Business of Gen Z’ event. We believe not only in working for Gen Zs but with them, and every panel at the event had a Gen Z voice, and an inclusivity across panels. In fact, we were perhaps the first event in India with a Gen Z Keynote speaker, Garvita Gulhati. With the phenomenal response to The Collab, we hope to continue making ‘important things interesting’ for the Gen Z, and hope for The Collab to become the go-to event for discussing all things Gen Z over the next decade.”