Time to get ‘Real’: Hindi GEC space – cluttered or room for more?

Time to get ‘Real’: Hindi GEC space – cluttered or room for more?

Author | Puneet Bedi Bahri | Thursday, Jan 22,2009 7:20 AM

Time to get ‘Real’: Hindi GEC space – cluttered or room for more?

The Hindi general entertainment space has always been in a state of flux, and now, with the announcement of a new channel – Real from the Alva brothers-Turner joint venture Real Global Broadcasting – the genre is set to see a fresh round of action.

With Real going live, the number of Hindi GECs in the country would go up to 11. Will this lead to too much clutter in the market or is there room for more players?

Colors’ success story is an encouragement for new players, on the other hand, there is also the beleaguered 9X channel, which has been hit by retrenchments and repeat programming.

The latest TAM numbers show that the top order of the Hindi GEC space is increasingly getting indistinct. A mere 8 GRPs separate Colors from genre leader Star Plus. While Star Plus has 271 GRPs, Colors has 263 GRPs. Zee TV has 195 GRPs, Sony 93, Star One 69, NDTV Imagine 65, SAB TV 52, Sahara One 47, 9X 37 and Zee Next at 2 GRPs.

As towhether there was too much clutter in the Hindi GEC space, exchange4media speaks with media players to get their views on this.

‘The time now is to consolidate with fewer players’

Mona Jain, Head, Strategic Investments, India Media Exchange, said, “If you really ask me, I don’t think there really is a need for another GEC at this point in time. Colors has two shows that are doing extremely well – ‘Balika Vadhu’ and ‘Uttaran’. If ‘Real’ comes out with great programmes and distribution on par with the rest, they have the potential to attract viewership, since viewers are not watching channels but programmes. Colors had spent a lot on their marketing and had great content, so ‘Real’ too will have to do similar kind of marketing. This is from a viewer’s point of view.”

“From a buyer’s point, I feel they have to have a critical bouquet of programmes, as this is the time when everyone is looking to get maximum returns for their buck. So, I think content has to be good across all bouquets, not just one or two programmes here or there that are good.”

Anita Nayar, CEO, MPG India, said, “I don’t think there really is a need for another GEC as the space is already too cluttered, it is only adding to the fragmentation. Though Colors in the recent past has performed very well and has changed the perception of GECs. Colors has done so well that it posses a threat to channels like Star and others who have been there for so long. The success of this all new GEC is dependent on what it offers its viewers and how it clicks with them.”

Commenting on the Real channel, Chirantan Chandran, Head, Mindshare Delhi, said, “We had thought that there would not be any new GEC coming in, especially at this point in time when polarisation is taking place. The time now is to consolidate with fewer players. I am not too sure how a new GEC will do at this time.”

According to CD Mitra, President, Mudra Max, “The GEC space is a little too overcrowded. Yet, if someone can come in with better, differentiated content and successful marketing and distribution and do a better job than the other existing ones, then the answer is yes. Colors is one such example, they came in last year and have been able to sustain themselves. I really do think there is space for only 3-5 standalone GECs for them to be successful and profitable ventures.”

Also read:

Mixed Media: Let’s get Real… do we need another GEC?

9X besieged by layoff woes

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