The bid called by the Ministry of Disinvestment for the IPO account of six companies has been decided. Concept, Sobhagya and Pressman have bagged the accounts. The other agencies involved were Percept and Adfactors.
The accounts up for grabs were Oil and Natural Gas Corporation (ONGC), Gas Authority of India Limited (GAIL), Dredging Corporation of India (DIC), IBP, IPCL and CMC. The IPOs are expected to be out in March 2004. Sources inform that the idea is to carry the proceeds to the next financial year and have the funds in the government exchequer by March 31, 2004.
Given this, the window frame of all IPOs is very similar. Hence, the IPO accounts are divided between three agencies explain sources. Concept is entrusted with the responsibilities of ONGC and DIC, GAIL and IBP go to Sobhagya, and Pressman is assigned IPCL and CMC.
IPO accounts, as is known, are not open to all agencies. One criterion is the competence in financial and statutory works. Based on the experience, agencies are ranked in a prime database on a yearly basis and only these agencies qualify to handle IPO accounts.
The winning agencies are mandated only for the IPO accounts of the respective corporates, that is they will take care only of the statutory communication in this period and not the corporate communication. This would primarily include creating statutory advertisements and organising road shows. The duties encompass advertising, media, and public relations, in addition to road shows, events and conferences.
Sources reveal that the government had invited tenders for these accounts and followed a bidding system. The creatives released will be made public by Department of Audio Visual Publicity (DAVP). In areas where there is no DAVP medium, the agencies will take care of the publicity and they will be billed at cost, that is they will be reimbursed through professional fees.
Vivek Suchanti, MD, Concept states, “We are very elated with these wins. Our presentation was strong and getting a landmark account speaks of our understanding of IPO related communication.”
ONGC, as per sources, is the meatiest IPO in Indian corporate history, and second in line is GAIL. The ad spends are largely dependent on the stock market in that period. The more difficult the market, higher the spends. As a result, the call on ad spends is taken only a fortnight before the offer. Since the IPOs are slated for March, the campaigns are expected to roll out by mid February.