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LG plans DTH foray

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LG plans DTH foray

LG Electronics India is planning to make inroads into the rural market of eastern India with direct-to-home (DTH) ready television called Digidirect.

The model, a first-of-its-kind in India, is targeted at rural and semi urban households without cable connections. It will enable the user to watch all free-to-air channels without cable connections.

Deba Ghosal, head-product marketing (IT & electronics) of LG India, said that it is commercially launching the model first in the eastern region keeping Durga Puja in mind.

Later on, it will be rolled out in north India during Diwali. LG has a 32 per cent marketshare in the east in the colour television (CTV) segment compared to 27 per cent in the country.

The company is banking on the launch to take its marketshare to 35 per cent in the east.

"We had already done test marketing of Digidirect in a small town in Kerala, a month back. The company is optimistic about the success of the model,” he said.

He added, “We are now launching the flat screen version but plan to introduce a conventional screen version at a lower price point considering the price sensitivity of the rural market.”

The price of the model ranges between Rs 15,000 and Rs 23,000. Ghosal pointed out that India has over 40 million non-cable and satellite households in India, according to an NRS study.

"This untapped segment is the main driver for LG Electronics' strategic decision to introduce the DTH ready range. We shall roll out to the rural market within the next 2-3 months," he added.

LG is hoping that the new segment will contribute 2-3 per cent of its turnover.

Currently, CTV contributes around 34 per cent of the turnover of LG Electronics. Ghosal said, LG is hoping to post Rs 9,000 crore turnover in 2005 compared to Rs 6, 500 crore in 2004.

"We are expecting to register sales of nearly Rs 3,000 crore from the CTV segment, where LG is the market leader," he added.


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