Keeping in view the hike in newsprint cost, the Indian Newspaper Society (INS) has decided to effect an industry wide increase of 30 per cent in card rates. The decision was taken at a meeting of the Executive Committee on August 11.
Newsprint prices, which have shot up from $560 per tonne in October 2007 to $850 per tonne in April 2008, it is expected to touch close to $1,000 per tonne in few months. The rise in prices is expected to continue at least till Q1 of 2009.
Bahubali S Shah, President, INS, said, "We have given the suggestion to increase the card rates rest its up to the publications to take a decision whether they want to implement it or not as every paper has its own economics to put in place. I don't think this will effect the publications if everyone collectively takes this decision as in the end the advertiser will go to the paper where he thinks his product will sell or he will hit the right target audience even though the advertisements rates have increased."
Further commenting on the talks with the Government on the reduction on import duty, Shah said, "This matter is on a market to market basis and the Government usually cannot be involved. Yet we have been able to convince the Government to decrease the import duty to 3 per cent from the earlier 5 per cent and will further try to bring it down."
Commenting on how HT Media is handling the situation, Benoy Roychowdhury, Executive Director, Media Marketing & Circulation, Hindustan Times, said, "We have already hiked our ad price rates in June and will be increasing a little more with effect from September 1, 2008. The decision that was taken to increase the ad rates was taken prior to the suggestion made by INS. There is a fair amount of increase we have done in our rates almost close to what INS has suggested. As a matter of fact, we usually revise out advertisement rates during this time of the year annually."
Ravi Dhariwal, CEO, The Times of India Group, said, "We have revised our advertisement rates and increased it to what we think is right for us on the basis of the competitive value we offer to our advertisers and the circulation and readership that we have. It is a complex exercise as the cost structure has changed."
Further commenting on this issue, Sanjay Gupta, CEO, Danik Jagran, said, "On the suggestion of INS, we will implement the 30 per cent increase in advertisement rates. This circular by INS will surely be a great help in pushing the idea, but the process is difficult and the revenue of the revised card rates will only be able to give benefit by the next fiscal, as it is difficult to make changes in the advertisement rates in-between the year."
Hike in newsprint cost having a domino effect; print media girdles up for hike in rates