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KBC account moves to Bates

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KBC account moves to Bates

StarPlus has moved the advertising account for Kaun Banega Crorepati from Rediffusion to Bates. Industry sources estimate the KBC account at Rs 5-6 crore in capitalised billings. The rest of STAR TV's advertising is split between Ogilvy & Mather and HTA, and the channel plans to consolidate the media-buying for all brands and channels with one agency in the near future.

Both Bates and Rediff were part of the initial pitch for the gameshow's account held about six months ago. In mid-January, Bates made a presentation that offered KBC a consumer insight into the brand's popular appeal across consumers of different ages, sexes and professions.

Vikram Sakhuja, executive vice-president (marketing), STAR TV, said KBC advertising was being handled on a project-wise basis, and that remuneration would be purely fee-based. Ad industry veterans believe that while KBC's promotion-heavy ad strategy might have worked initially, the competitive environment has changed and it is now time for the programme to look at some serious brand-building.

Although the major advertising for KBC has been on-air promos running on STAR Plus and its group channels, hoardings and a press launch campaign were also part of the media activity. And though this part of the business might not be a huge windfall, for Bates India, it's part of a longer winning streak.

In the calendar year 2000, the agency grew from Rs 60 crore to Rs 130 crore, and it has recently picked up the multi-crore account of the Mumbai Shopping Festival, which will be held in May 2001. It has also bagged the accounts of India Online -- a broadband service provider -- Gesco and Dabur's Binaca range.


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