Hindi daily Raj Express is seeking to further strengthen its presence in the Hindi belt and is eyeing expansion in Chhattisgarh and Rajasthan in 2009. Launched in Bhopal in March 2005, Raj Express entered the Indore market in May 2006, followed by Jabalpur and Gwalior in October 2008 and November 2008, respectively.
Elaborating on the expansion plans, Sanjay Mehta, Managing Direction, Raj Group, said, “We intend to complete our coverage of the Chhattisgarh market with the launch of the Raipur and Bilaspur editions in the next six months. We are targeting a minimum of 2 lakh copies for these editions. We plan to launch four editions in Rajasthan – Jaipur, Jodhpur, Kota and Udaipur – in 2009. We are targeting a minimum of 4 lakh copies.”
Commenting on the content of the paper and the competition, Mehta said, “Raj Express aims to cater to all age groups and has a strong editorial base. We will continud to do the same for the new editions in both Chhattisgarh and Rajasthan. We are not competing with other publications as we are trying to draw our own line without thinking of anyone.”
“Both Rajasthan and Chhattisgarh have a huge Hindi readership base that we plan to tap. Another reason for expanding to those markets is that we want to give better coverage to our readers and advertisers there,” he added.
Raj Express would be undertaking BTL advertising for the launch in these two states, which would be handled by the paper’s brand managers.
Raj Group was founded in 1992 in Bhopal and has been in the construction business, pioneering the construction of apartment and independent row housing projects in Bhopal. Raj Group now comprises Raj Homes, Raj Industries, Raj TV and Raj Express.
As per IRS 2008 Round 2 figures, Raj Express had a total readership of 533,000 (Bhopal and Indore).