The Association of Indian Magazines (AIM), the industry body of Indian magazines, on Tuesday elected a new body at its governing body meeting held in Delhi. Among those elected is India Today Group Executive Director, Ashish Bagga, as President of the association. Bagga replaces Paresh Nath, Editor-Publisher, Delhi Press Magazines.
The other office bearers elected include Maheshwar Peri, President-Publisher, Outlook Group as Vice-President; Pradeep Gupta, Chairman-MD, CyberMedia Ltd as Secretary; and Maulik Kotak, Publisher, Chitralekha Group as Treasurer.
Anurag Batra, MD-Publisher, exchange4media Group and Smiti Ruia, Publisher, Time Out magazine have been inducted as the two new members.
Speaking on his priorities as the new AIM President, Bagga said, "I will work towards enlarging the membership base and ensure greater participation. I will also take up various issues facing the magazine business with the different agencies like the Railways, Postal Department, etc."
Elaborating on the challenges faced by the magazine business, Bagga said, "Magazine business is quite a different business. The advertising share of magazines is just 8 per cent of the total ad revenue of print publications in India, whereas in Europe and the US, it stands at around 30 per cent. So, we will work towards raising the ad share of magazines."
Bagga felt that magazines in India had a great future, but faced tough competition from newspapers. "Magazines have their own space. If newspapers are coming out with weekend magazine supplements, then it only proves how indispensable magazines are because anyway magazines don't opt for newspapers to support themselves. Though the competition is there, magazines should have the editorial environment to be compelling enough to attract advertisers," he added.
Bagga is also Chairman of the periodicals committee of INS and was instrumental in organising the first-ever Indian Magazine Summit in New Delhi. The Association from now on will elect new office bearers every two years, which replaces the present system of three-year tenure.