Gaya in Bihar is set to witness some print action with two Hindi dailies – Hindustan and Prabhat Khabar – gearing up for launch. It is almost after a decade that Hindi newspaper Hindustan is ready to expand its reach in Bihar. Meanwhile, Prabhat Khabar, the third most read newspaper in the state as per the Indian Readership Survey, is also set to explore the Gaya market by the year-end.
In an interview with exchange4meida, Amit Chopra, CEO, HMVL, said, “In Bihar, we have a new unit coming up in Gaya and construction for the same is already on. We will soon start a new unit in Purniya as well. The markets of Uttar Pradesh and Bihar are rapidly growing with firm economic growth, which offer enough opportunities to keep investing in these markets.”
He further said that in addition to this, they were looking for opportunities in other states as well. “As and when we find that the time is right and opportunity is available, we are happy to invest. At some stage, we will go for a second unit in Uttarakhand too,” he added.
With the Gaya edition, Prabhat Khabar is ready to launch its fourth edition in the state. At present, Prabhat Khabar’s three editions – Patna, Muzaffarpur and Bhagalpur – cover the entire state. Besides, the North Eastern region of Bihar gets covered through its Siliguri edition, while the bordering regions of Bihar-Jharkhand are served by the Deoghar edition of the newspaper. Prabhat Khabar had launched its last edition in the state from Bhagalpur in February 2011.
Meanwhile, there are talks of Dainik Bhaskar also entering Bihar. According to industry sources, the group is likely to enter the market in next financial year.
Bihar has shown good growth in the last few years in terms of the growth in average issue readership (AIR) of Hindi newspapers. Led by the growth of Hindustan and Prabhat Khabar, with both adding nearly 4 lakh readers in a year, the AIR of ‘Any Hindi’ daily in Bihar had reached 63.96 lakh as per the Indian Readership Survey 2011 Q1 data, a growth of 7.59 per cent as compared to last year. With more editions entering the fray, these numbers are expected to grow further.