As a Christian who spends nearly half his life on the internet for business related purposes, I have yet to come across a site (when browsing for fun) that offers children, family and faith-based oriented content that really grabs my attention .... until now.
A few weeks back while Googling for Christian related content, I found a publicly traded company called Truli Media Group (OTCPK:TRLI) and upon visiting their website at Truli.net, I realized that there was finally a place that acts as a conduit for the unmet needs and desires of millions of frustrated internet users. In simultaneously finding that Truli also had a Facebook page, I was amazed there were already over 500,000 "likes" of the site by users, a number that currently stands at 731,484 today. As if this isn't impressive enough, Truli has now also established over 75,000 followers on Twitter.
This past week, I was able to reach the CEO of Truli and was greeted with open arms when I requested an interview. The fascinating Q&A interview is logged below.
Q = question from me .... MJS = answer from Michael Jay Solomon
Q: Michael, can you give my readers a brief history about yourself and what you've accomplished over the last fifty seven years when you began your career ?
MJS: I started out with United Artists in 1956 when I was eighteen years old, loading films on trucks while going to NYU at night. When I was twenty one, UA sent me to Panama to open the Central American territory for American films, so I traveled to Guatemala, Nicaragua, Costa Rica and Honduras. A year later I went to Colombia and a year after that I was made the manager over Peru and Bolivia. At age twenty six, MCA (now Universal NBC) hired me to start their Latin American TV division. I moved to Mexico and over the next few years I put most of the TV networks on air. I was then made Vice President and traveled the world. In 1978, I started Telepictures. The company went public in 1980, the stock quickly rose from $3.00 to $32.00 and seven years later we bought Lorimar Telepictures and then MGM Studios. I personally hired Judge Wapner for the People's Court and we had many other successful television shows, such as Dallas and Knot's Landing. Four years later, I was contacted by Warner Brothers International Television and subsequently sold the company I started thirteen years earlier with $1 million dollars, for $1.2 billion dollars, at which time I became the President of Warner Bros. International for the next five years. I have served on the Board of Overseers for the prestigious NYU Stern School of Business for the past 28 years. After many years, I am still married to my beautiful wife, Luciana Paluzzi, famously known for her role as Fiona Volpe in Thunderball, a James Bond 007 thriller starring Sean Connery.
Q: You launched Truli.net on July 10th (my birthday) of last year and at age seventy five, why not call it a day and relax in comfort the rest of your life ? Why press on after so many impressive accomplishments on such a massive scale ?
MJS: Retiring is not in my DNA and I'm as enthusiastic as ever about meeting the needs of a very fragmented $9 billion dollar market with little to no competition. There are over 100 million people in the U.S. alone that consider themselves Evangelical Christians and another 700 million abroad. They are very hungry for a faith-based and family media content platform and social community hub.
Q: So tell me why you're so excited about the Truli.net site and what it offers.
MJS: The slogan of today that everyone seems to be familiar with is "Content is King," but I've coined the phrase "Distribution is Emperor" because a massive business success can be achieved in a short period of time thanks to the newest digital technologies ranging from the cloud to mobile devices and it's very inexpensive, not to mention taking advantage of a truly untapped market.
The content on our site is extremely diverse and we're quickly becoming known as the Netflix of faith-based movies. Visitors can rent a movie for $4.00, but what's great about the platform is that we don't pay a cent for any of the content on our site unlike Netflix and we get a 50% cut from content providers. We are working towards having our own icon on Smart TV's as you see from Netflix, Facebook and others.
Visitors can choose from thousands of weekly sermons to listen to and many of them will tithe to these ministries, just as if they were at a Sunday morning worship service. Truli gets a 15% cut from these donations and there's no charge to the ministries that provide the content. One of the most popular and charismatic ministers of our time with over 20 million followers, threw his hat into the Truli ring back in December, as Joel Osteen signed on to our platform.
In addition to the rapidly expanding movie and sermon content, Truli is also focused on its fast growing segments of children's programming, men's and women's programming, Christian comedy, books, Christian rock and gospel and now sports. Programming is also rapidly taking shape in the Spanish, Korean and Mandarin languages. Our shopping network known as Truli Shop has over 300,000 items for sale and is powered by The Christianbook Group and as is the case with all of our other content, we pay nothing for the inventory, yet achieve a 10% to 15% cut on all items sold, packaged and delivered.
As of today, we have approximately 100K unique monthly visitors and hope to achieve 1 million unique monthly visitors by the end of this summer along with doubling our workforce in the next 12 months.
Q: What metric can shareholders use to value the company in its present stage of evolution ?
MJS: We currently have 83,651,373 shares outstanding and the actual number of shares that are freely trading in the float and not tightly held is somewhere between 4 to 5 million. Our current monthly cash burn is around $40K thanks to our free content business model and our market cap is $6.6 million at the current price of .08, so obviously I feel the stock is beyond undervalued based upon our rapid growth and the fact that we're no longer in the development stage and are now generating revenues. I also recently enhanced shareholder confidence by converting $1.2 million in debt (my own money) to equity at approximately .065, basically making what I perceive to be a bold statement that back in early February, the company was worth no less than the conversion price.
Personally, I love this rapidly evolving story and I think the conversion from debt to equity puts a floor in the stock price at .065 and even if this weren't the case, the tiny monthly cash burn of just $40K indicates that there's hope for big profits ahead, especially if growth continues on the warp-speed pace that it is. TRLI is a fully reporting company and must file quarterly reports with the SEC, thus it will be easy to follow the financial progress of this business.
Investing in the stock down here at .08 is more than warranted and the person who you're rooting for to make Truli a success has previously taken a $1 million dollar investment and turned it into $1.2 billion dollars. Can he do it again ? If he does, investors will have more money than they know what to do with.
Disclosure: I am long OTCPK:TRLI.