<b>Prashant Panday</b>, Executive Director & CEO, Radio Mirchi

<p align="justify">Radio will be about 8-9 per cent of the total ad industry. It will grow rapidly, especially after Phase III is rolled out… Radio has been and continues to be a very sexy medium. It’s fast paced, high-on-adrenaline and best of all, we get to work with some of the most creative music personalities.</p>

e4m by exchange4media Staff
Updated: Jun 24, 2011 12:00 AM
<b>Prashant Panday</b>, Executive Director & CEO, Radio Mirchi

Radio will be about 8-9 per cent of the total ad industry. It will grow rapidly, especially after Phase III is rolled out… Radio has been and continues to be a very sexy medium. It’s fast paced, high-on-adrenaline and best of all, we get to work with some of the most creative music personalities.



Prashant Panday, Executive Director & CEO, Radio Mirchi, has been with the company right from its inception. He has several achievements to his credit, including rollout of Phase II radio stations of the company.

Panday holds a Bachelors Degree in Electronics and Communications Engineering from Gujarat University and a Post Graduate Diploma in Management from the Indian Institute of Management, Bangalore.

Prior to joining Radio Mirchi, he was Director (Marketing) for Modi Revlon Ltd India operations. He has also worked with Hindustan Unilever Ltd, Frito Lay India, Mudra Communications and Citibank NA. He has 17 years’ experience in sales, marketing and advertising and has also held other senior positions.

In conversation with exchange4media’s Shubhangi Mehta, Panday speaks about Radio Mirchi’s growth path, regional radio stations, Phase III rollout and more...



Q. What were some of the highlights of the last year for Radio Mirchi? I think, for us per se, the fact that we recovered in revenue growth strongly and retained our market share at 35 per cent of the private FM market are important highlights. Also, the high EBITDA margins that we’ve reported – 32 per cent for the full year and 40 per cent in the fourth quarter – are extremely good numbers. Likewise, our PAT numbers are at their highest ever, listenership numbers are strong as well. So, all in all, a very good year for us.

Q. What are your thoughts on regional radio stations? They are definitely viable and profitable, especially for Mirchi, all our stations are viable and profitable. Besides, the growth in the future is going to come from the regional markets and so we are excited about these stations.

Q. How do your foresee the radio industry to be five years from now? Radio will be about 8-9 per cent of the total ad industry. It will grow rapidly, especially after Phase III is rolled out.

Q. What is your overall view on the radio industry? Radio has been and continues to be a very sexy medium. It’s fast paced, high-on-adrenaline and best of all, we get to work with some of the most creative music personalities.

Q. What was the total revenue for your channel in 2010? What are the targets for 2011? We declare results on a fiscal year basis. In the year ended March 2011, our revenues were Rs 280 crore. Our EBITDA was Rs 91 crore.

Q. What are the development areas that have your immediate attention? A lot more emphasis is being put on sales training and sales CRM. As we prepare to become a much bigger company, a lot of time, money and effort are being put into developing more robust systems. Likewise, we are investing heavily in making the IT system more robust. Apart from this, our primary role remains adding value to the lives of our listeners on the one hand, and to our advertisers on the other. That will never change. We will do more innovations for our listeners and advertisers alike.

Q. Which are the strongest markets for your radio channel and which are the weakest? The strongest markets in terms of revenues are obviously the top metros. The weakest are a few stations located in states where we don’t have a strong presence.

Q. What is your target audience and what is your USP compared to the competition? Our TG is clearly the upwardly mobile 25-year old person who has ‘sunshine’ written all over his personality. As a brand, we are a sunshine brand. When a listener comes to Mirchi, he goes back refreshed and energised. In a world of so much negativity, we are a pep-up pill.

Q. Who are your creative and media agencies? Our creative agency is McCann, while Madison is our media agency.

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