Zee News is now using sports to promote itself. The channel has announced the 'Gold ka iradaa, 1 Crore ka wadaa' incentive of Rs 1 crore for the Indian Olympic Hockey team if it returns from Athens with a gold medal. Co-sponsoring Zee News its bid to shore up the Indian Hockey team are Maruti Udyog, Relaxo Footwear and BSNL.
Deepender Sehajpal, Assistant Vice-president, Brand Management, Zee News, says the property 'Gold Ka iradaa, 1 Crore ka wadaa' was created keeping in mind the popularity of hockey among Indians, especially at the Olympics. Hence, by putting forth a high cash amount the channel has created an excitement among viewers. "This would not only keep the spirits of the players high but would also capture the maximum number of eyeballs for the channel," he said.
Veteran commentator Jasdev Singh and former hockey Olympian Pargat Singh have been roped by the channel to provide coverage of the event, Sehajpal added.
Managing Director, Relaxo Footwear, RK Dua, says his company decided to tie up with Zee News for the Athens Olympics "keeping our core business in mind, especially since sports and shoes are closely associated. The company found it a good platform for product and brand promotion." Given that hockey is a popular event at the Olympics, the association with Zee News was worked out, he added.