Get to Know Ficto: Q&A with CEO Mike Esola

December 2018 saw the birth of Ficto, a free streaming service that offers interactive shows produced for mobile. Optimizing vertical and horizontal viewing while providing transparent metrics and meaningful revenue share, Ficto is working quickly to become the content platform of tomorrow as well as a home for brands and independent artists alike.

Just yesterday, Ficto announced its expanded slate of shows that will premiere in conjunction with its consumer launch in the first quarter of 2020, championing a robust line-up of shows, with genres ranging from reality and news to comedy and scripted programming.

Brand Storytelling sat down with Mike Esola, Co-Founder and CEO of Ficto, to learn more about the company’s content launch, consumer and creator experiences, and brand partnership opportunities with the new streaming service:

Certain shows will feature click-thru purchases, as depicted here

On and in media coverage, Ficto makes the statement “We stand up for those who create.” Please explain.

Every month, Ficto takes 50% of its revenue and allocates it amongst all its creators based on the respective episodes’ view count. Ficto partnered with Decent in order to use their blockchain as an automated, verifiable ledger system for accounting and payment distribution. While theoretically Ficto could achieve a similar result without a blockchain backend, we wanted to address the lack of transparency that currently exists in streaming companies when it comes to performance-based compensation for content creators. Ficto is first to market with this and we have received tremendous feedback from celebrity actors, A-list directors and showrunners. We are at Fantastic Fest in Austin this weekend and the response has been terrific. We are part of a grassroots movement to make metrics and comp more transparent for artists.

It’s an unavoidable line of questions: Quibi… who came first, Ficto or Quibi? Did one inspire the other to launch? What are the main differentiators? How will Ficto compete with the massive investment behind Quibi or is this a case of rising tide lifts all boats?