Negotiations between Prasar Bharati and HFCL-Nine Broadcasting India for the three-hour prime time slot between 7-10 pm on Doordarshan Metro have broken down. Doordarshan has indicated a lower price and a longer period than what HFCL-Nine had paid.
DD has invited bids for the slot and the 10 pm to 00.30 am band for a period of three years. The floor price for the three-hour slot will be Rs 97.50 crore, for which HFCL-Nine had paid Rs 121 crore for one year.
The 10-10.30 p.m. band will cost a minimum of Rs 17.50 crore. Doordarshan has not indicated any floor price for the 11-12 pm and 00.30 am slots. The 7-9 pm band telecast schedule will be with effect from September 11, 2001, and the 9-10 pm slot from October 16, 2001. Programmes will be telecast in Hindi, while the later time band will be in Hindi/English.
The bidders will have to apply for slots on hourly basis. The bidder can also apply for the entire three-hour slot together for the 7-10 pm band. There could be a separate bid of half-hour for the half-hour slot to 00.30 am.
Star TV chief executive officer Peter Mukerjea said his company would be interested in bidding for the slot. Sony Entertainment Television also plans to apply.