The Times of India is launching its first Gujarati newspaper, named NavGujarat Samay, from Ahmedabad on January 16, 2014. The daily will have a total of 48 pages and a cover price of Rs 3.
Ajay Umath is the Editor-in-Chief of NavGujarat Samay. The paper will cover news related to political, business, youth, media, marketing, life style, fashion, city events, appointments, social media news, gadgets, and trends.
Speaking to exchange4media, Rahul Kansal, Executive President, Brand Function, BCCL said, “Gujarat is a clear dominance of the language and young technology. The social economic class and the entire working community prefer reading a Gujarati paper rather than an English paper. If a newspaper wants to be young and progressive, then this is a very important segment.”
Kansal further said, “Gujarat has a lot of energy at this point of time, the state has progress and confidence and it reflects the sense of positivity. Most of the advertisers also want to be with a newspaper which is full of energy and growing faster. There is lot of advertising environment in the sate currently.”
Major focus of the paper will be on Ahmedabad-based brands such as Vadilal, Zydus, Havmor, and Torrent, among others.
Meanwhile, the group is campaigning aggressively for the new daily and has introduced an introductory offer, wherein subscription for five months is available for Rs 99, along with assured gifts.
It may be recalled that in August 2013, exchange4media had reported that The Times of India was gearing up to launch a Gujarati daily (TOI stirs up Gujarat print market; to launch Gujarati edition in Sept) in September 2013. Industry sources informed that BCCL had tied up with one of the Gujarati dailies to print the paper, however, later on the deal fell through, hence the delay in the launch of NavGujarat Samay.
NavGujarat Samay is TOI’s second foray into the regional language media space after Bengali daily Ei Samay. The launch is in keeping with BCCL focus on strengthening its foothold in the non-metros of the country and reaching out to the regional readers.
The Gujarat print market is currently dominated by players such as Gujarat Samachar and Divya Bhaskar. Some of the other dailies in the market are Sandesh, Gujarat Mitra and Darpan.