The Hindu is all set to launch its new offering in Tamil from July this year.
In 2012, many big brands felt the need to explore the southern market and entered alone or via a joint venture; Times of India was one of them.
In the first phase, The Hindu will be launched in 13 cities of the state such as Chennai and Coimbatore.
Talking to exchange4media, Suresh Srinivasan, Vice President, The Hindu said, “Vernaculars have done remarkably well and there is only one English newspaper in top ten dailies in India, remaining are regional. There is a huge demand for local news consumption and people are looking forward for local news in local languages.”
Though the distribution in first phase comprises 13 cities, news gathering will be pan Tamil Nadu. The Group aims to target at least 30 per cent of Tamil readership on day one. The idea is to target the non Hindu readers and that is the reason why the organisation is not bundling it with its main paper.
Will the readership of The Hindu suffer in the state as readers might shift to the new offering? Srinivasan replied, “If these things were to happen, they would have switched to one of the Tamil leading newspapers but there is a different set of English readers and our focus is to get SSC AB category of the Tamil readers and we would be selective in the way we are going to do our distribution.”
Talking about competition from other existing players, he said, “We are not looking at the numbers game; we believe there is space for good Tamil daily and there is a void in the Tamil space. It is one of the key markets and perhaps one of the best opportunities for any Tamil paper to come in as compared to the neighboring states. There is also a demand from readers for The Hindu to start a Tamil paper.”
Apart from meeting the need, demand and filling the void, the Group is aiming to strengthen its position in the state with this initiaitve. “With this launch, we will strengthen our position in Tamil Nadu as market leaders. We are also creating an entry barrier for other players,” added Srinivasan.
The idea behind launching the newspaper in July is to target the commercial season of ‘Aadi’.
The Hindu will have to contend with players such as Daily Thanthi, Dinakaran, Dinamalar in the Tamil regional space.