The Indian kids’ channel genre is set to witness some action with the introduction of a new entrant, Hindi kids’ channel ‘Spacetoon TV’, which is slated for launch in early 2009. Yazdi Sodawaterwala has been appointed as Distribution Head for the new channel.
Despite the presence of quite a few established players, media planners believe that there is still room for another kids’ channel in the market. However, with the existing players in the kids’ genre under intense pressure, it is going to be an uphill task for a new entrant like Spacetoon TV to establish itself and survive.
The other existing players in this space include Cartoon Network, POGO, Hungama TV, Nick, Jetix and Disney Channel. According to TAM Media research data Cartoon Network and Hungama emerge leaders among kids’ channels in the all market and Hindi speaking market respectively. Jetix and Disney Channel have failed to get adequate market share. And it may be noted that Hungama, Disney Channel and Jetix are sister companies, while Hungama is doing very well, Jetix and Disney Channel have fallen behind.
Sudha Natrajan, Joint President, Lintas Media Group said, “Kids’ channels are here to stay, they are very important in whole lot of plans which are directly affected. All kind of adult brands which advertise on kids’ channels get significant GRPs from kids’ channel. For example if cost per rating point (CPRP) of GEC channel is at X then CPRP of Kids’ channel will be at half X or even less than that or almost 1/3rd of X.”
She also said that channel like Hungama is the only channel which has content really specifically driven to Indian audience in terms of character and so on and of course they have foreign content too. Nick is also doing well; they really struggled a lot to pick up in kids’ genre.”
“If you ask is there still a requirement for another kids’ channel then the answer is ‘No’ but if you ask is there a space for one more kids’ channel then the answer would be ‘Yes’ because there is never been dearth of competition”, says Natrajan.
Adding she said that there are some channels in kids’ channel are under pressure and when existing channels are under pressure, it not going to be very easy task for a new channel to stay and survive, I would say that time is fairly challenging. The success of any channels is totally depends on the content they offer to kids.
Divya Radhakrishnan, President, TME said, “We have space for another kids’ channel. A new entrant in kids’ channel can survive as long as they provide the content that kids like. Kids’ channels are very important in media plan, if you have brands targeting kids and not only kids but also mothers. The advertisements on the kid’s channels include ads on biscuit, snack ads, toys and the other brand which targets kids as well as mothers simultaneously.”
Spacetoon kid’s TV channel (Hindi) will cater to all kids across India in the age group of 4 to 12 Years. According to an official statement, Spacetoon objective is - Entertain to Educate and Educates to Entertain. The channel is India’s first free to air channel in its genre and is slotted to be launched by early 2009.
Yazdi will lead the entire distribution network for the upcoming free to air TV channel. He will build up strategies for launching and increasing the reach of the channel. Yazdi will be based at Spacetoon office headquartered in Mumbai and will directly report to Rajiv Sangari, MD & CEO of Spacetoon India.
Commenting on Yazdi’s appointment, Sangari said, “We are pleased to have Yazdi on board as our Head of TV distribution, Yazdi brings along with him vast experience and understanding of TV distribution business, fabulous relationships with the Trade, I have known Yazdi for sometime and have found him to be quite motivated and he fits very well with our company’s objectives and vision”.
Yazdi has moved to Spacetoon from broad cast initiative limited (Live India MI Marathi), where he was Vice president Distribution. He was responsible for distributing Live Media channel in India. Yazdi has total 15 years of experience in the media and entertainment industry. He has been responsible for setting up channels like Home TV, SAB TV, Live India, and MI Marathi.