No progress is possible without news: MK Anand, MD and CEO of Times Network at the UNYCC
Anand spoke at the United Nations Young Changemakers Conclave (UNYCC), held on October 27, 2018, in Mumbai on the topic, 'Reimagining News'
MK Anand, Managing Director and CEO of the Times Network delivered a speech at United Nations Youth Changemakers Conclave (UNYCC) held on October 27, 2018, in Mumbai, on the topic, 'Reimagining News'.
Below is his full speech:
Tonight, I will talk about 3 key issues that I think faces us all in the context of News. I am not going to discuss solutions. Just points that I think I would be concerned about even as an average citizen. I am just more aware of them due to my profession and feel they are of critical importance to all of us in society.
Human society is a gigantic mind. We hear about the approaching singularity of machines. I think that singularity already exists. The inter-connected social system that pervades all we do is, in reality, a gigantic mind. And everything it experiences is News. News connects the component individual minds and creates the essential homogeneity that is required for the universal mind to function. While education prepares the blank child mind to bring it on par with other component minds, News does the lifelong function of bringing us all up to speed with each other.
News enables us to participate, collaborate and innovate. No progress is possible without news. What is not news to you does not exist for you. And the corollary to that - what is made news for you becomes valuable. News as you can see is as important as air and water. I am stating the obvious here because I worry that it is not obvious to many of us in society. News is left to a very narrow bunch of us news professionals. There is little discourse about the news itself, even as there is an explosion of discourses on our channels and platforms about everything else in the name of daily news.
After a fairly long stable environment of almost 200 years, wherein news was centrally broadcast – as newspapers and then as radio and television, the last couple of decades saw a paradigm change.
I visualize traditional broadcasting as similar to a City’s water supply system. A central source and pumping system that pushes similar content to all households on the grid. Digital distribution, however, has a different mechanism. It operates more like an organic jungle system of watering holes –the data servers. Thirsty animals come to the source and drink what they want. There is no push. That’s replaced by ‘search and find’. So far, so good. It’s a new mechanism. News players could adapt quite easily. All of us have. And it works. Traditional broadcast brands such as CNN, Economist, Washington Post, Times of India, Times Now and NDTV continue to dominate the digital news space as they did in the past, proving that consumers reward dependable brands with their loyalty irrespective of medium.
The real challenge to the ecosystem however comes from other collateral changes this new mechanism has unleashed. And these constitute 2 of the 3 elephants in the room that I am going to talk about. These changes I must concede are not entirely negative. All that is needed is to understand their ramifications and view them through new lenses.
1. The Internet converts every device on it into a potential server. And without realizing, each one of us became a watering hole. With advances in cameras, speech and text software, editing and presentation software, our watering holes became interesting. And social media gave us a whole new set of wings. The positive side of this ability to publish is the opportunity it offers individuals to directly reach out to others, without the cumbersome and sometimes limiting filter of media platforms. Mass outreach is today possible without courting major media platforms. Donald Trump has 55 million followers on Twitter, which gives him the strength to brush aside global news brands. Narendra Modi’s social media reach is larger than the social media reach of the top 3 Indian Digital English News platforms – TOI, NDTV and Times Now put together. This obviously is a great source of power for these leaders. This strengthens democracy as it offers individuals immense potential. While the new medium comes with this major potential, there is a dark side to this. Most of us use this new power without complex intentions. The power however can be misused by vested interests. To manipulate or simply subvert. Fake news, deliberate and unintended has grave consequences. It’s all the more dangerous when we realise that the news consumer is still driven by an almost 200 years habit of trusting the published word. While publishing technology has leapfrogged, the same cannot be expected of the consumer brain. Branded media could lose its business, net worth and the shirt off its back if they did a hoax piece and got caught. What do anonymous social media jockeys have to lose? Worse still is the propagation by message apps, with no address of source. Regulation and consumer education has to urgently adapt. This is an elephant in the room that has been spotted and called out and hopefully will be corralled.
2. In the context of Digital news, the most critical issue besides fake news that needs to be confronted is the concentration of power and therefore potential threat that Search and Social intermediaries can pose. This probably is the biggest of the elephants in any room that discusses News. And it is not yet called out in the way it should be. As a News practitioner, I can tell you one thing. Ensuring that my news gets to your screen and not my competitor’s is not as simple as it looks. Behind your seemingly ‘in control’ act of choosing my channel and staying tuned, is a highly complex big data-driven activity. Your choice is always influenced by a series of invisible steps that broadcasters take in placement, distribution, visibility etc. And I am talking about traditional broadcast. We call it reach optimization. This power gets magnified when the medium through which you access my stories, the algorithms that decide which story to place in front of you when you search is owned and operated by monolithic, multinational corporations that may not be easily regulated by local laws. I am not blaming them of willful subversion at all. They have robust systems to ensure fair play. But concentrating power of this nature can have unintended disastrous consequences. Today search rules on such platforms can overnight change which News brand gets watched over others. A third-party platform that wields such absolute power that determines survival itself for News players can be dangerous to democracy.
3. The last point that I think needs examination is the excessive reliance of this business on ad revenue. This obviously matters only for what is called paid media – probably the most trustworthy and agenda-less amongst news operators. Ad revenue has been a traditional source of revenue for all media and has worked quite well at the social level too. But in the current highly fragmented and hyper-competitive environment, excessive reliance on ad sales for News pose some serious problems. This is more pronounced in the Indian context as western and more developed markets have a sizeable component of subscription revenue as news consumers are in the habit for paying for content. Advertisers always spend on what they consider important to their business. Their target groups are most times younger (for higher lifetime value) and economically capable (for obvious reasons). There is thus a young and rich bias in their selection. The corollary to this is no Content manager pursues TGs that are old and poor. This can over time lead to the exclusion of their interests in news media and disenfranchise large portions of population, specially in countries such as ours. While public broadcasters do work towards filling this gap, we need to develop a culture of paid subscriptions for news. Consumers need to become aware that news paid for by other and may not be in their interest in the long term.
To circle back on the key issues that need thought and deliberation by all and not just us News professionals:
1. Fake news is a social problem. While a lot is being done, this will pose serious threats for a long time as consumer habit of trusting published word is strong. We need to start providing consumers with mechanisms to cope.
2. Search and Social monopolies could pose risks to the industry as a whole. This is an evolving situation. We hope technology itself will provide the solution to this. The industry also needs to come together and approach this as a common problem.
3. Subscription culture needs to be developed for news products. This is in the larger interests of all constituents. News needs to be recognized as far more important and strategically impacting than it currently is. Marketing in this area is lacking and could be a solution. I hope I have been able to give you some perspectives on reimagining news in the current environment. Your views and contributions are welcome. I am sure you can reach me on twitter or email that the organizers can direct you to. Thank you for being an attentive audience.
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In the Top 5 Programmes Colors’ new show ‘Fear Factor Khatron Ke Khiladi Jigar Pe Trigger’ led the urban market and took the second spot overall (Urban+Rural)
Zee Anmol continued to lead the overall market with 825 million impressions. Sony Entertainment Television climbed up to the second spot with 631 million impressions while Zee TV retained its third spot with 621 million impressions according to Broadcast Audience Research Council (BARC) India Week 2(January 5-11,2019) of 2019 data.
In the top five programme category, Colors ‘Naagin-3’ bagged the first spot in the Top 5 Programmes overall with 14.27 million impressions. Colors’ new show ‘Fear Factor Khatron Ke Khiladi Jigar Pe Trigger’ entered the category at second spot with 14.25 million impressions. Zee Anmol’s ‘Kumkum Bhagya’ slipped to the third spot with 13.95 million impressions, while ‘Kundali Bhagya’ held on to its fourth spot with 13.93 million impressions. Sony Entertainment Television’s ‘The Kapil Sharma Show’ also maintained its fifth spot with 11.6 million impressions.
Sony Entertainment Television dethroned Star Plus to top the urban market with 466 million impressions. Star Plus slipped to the second spot with its 418 million impressions. Colors, Zee TV and Star Bharat retained its third, fourth and fifth spot with 397 million, 380 million and 322 million impressions respectively.
Colors’ new show ‘Fear Factor Khatron Ke Khiladi Jigar Pe Trigger’ led the Top Five Programmes with 9.7 million impressions. It was followed by Sony Entertainment Television’s ‘The Kapil Sharma Show’ and ‘Super Dancer Chapter 3 Audition’ slipped to second and fourth spot with 9.1 million and 7.4 million impressions respectively. Colors’ popular ‘Naagin-3’ and Zee TV’s ‘Kundali Bhagya’ took third and fifth spot with 8.9 million and 6.5 million impressions respectively.
Zee Anmol too continued to lead the rural market with 669 million impressions. Star Utsav retained its second spot with 409 million impressions. Dangal climbed to the third spot with 378 million impressions. Rishtey retained its fourth spot with 361 million impressions while Sony Pal slipped to the fifth spot with 354 million impressions.
Zee Anmol’s ‘Kumkum Bhagya’ and ‘Kundali Bhagya’ led the Top Five Programmes in this market with 11.5 million and 11.4 million impressions respectively. Zee Anmol’s ‘Mahek’ retained its third spot with 8.8 million impressions while Dangal TV’s ‘Ramayan’ slipped to the fourth spot with 7.9 million impressions. Zee Anmol’s ‘Ek Main Aur Ek Tu’ slipped to the fifth spot with 6.5 million impressions.
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The Zee Family Pack offers 23 channels now at an attractive launch offer of only Rs. 39* per month
With the new TRAI tariff/pricing regime all set to come into effect from February 01, 2019, ZEE, has announced attractive launch offers for its consumers. Zee family packs will be available for Rs. 39* only. This special launch offer has been devised for consumers across Hindi speaking states, Maharashtra, West Bengal, and Odisha. Leading the change agenda for the new pricing paradigm, ZEE was the first network to roll out its multiple customer-centric packs and now with this attractive launch offer, it promises greater value and more affordability for consumers.
ZEE has three types of packs that come in very attractive prices ranging from the lowest at Zee Prime Pack Tamil-SD at Rs. 10* for 8 channels, Zee Family Pack – Hindi SD at Rs. 39* for 23 channels to the ZEE All-in-One SD pack that brings the entire lot of 26 channels at just Rs. 59* only. The Zee Family Pack includes leading channels such as Zee TV, &TV, Zee Cinema, &Pictures, Zee Bollywood, Zee News, Zee Anmol, Big Ganga, Zing, LF and many others, cutting across multiple genres such as entertainment, movies, news, music and lifestyle thereby offering content that caters to every member of the family, every day. The a-la-carte rates for certain channels like Zee Cinema, &pictures, Zee Talkies, Zee Yuva & Zee Bangla Cinema have also been revised.
Atul Das, Chief Revenue Officer - Affiliate Sales, ZEE said, “Zee is the No. 1 television network in the country. We continue to innovate and bring new content offering across genres like entertainment, movies, music, news, and lifestyle and in multiple languages including Hindi, Marathi, Bangla, Odia, Bhojpuri, Punjabi, Tamil, Telugu, Kannada, Malayalam, and English. As the new price regime gets implemented from 1st February 2019, we are excited that this would allow a better choice to consumers and bring transparency across the television value chain. To provide greater value to our consumers during this transition, we have come up with an attractive launch offer on the Zee Family Packs across Hindi, Marathi, Bangla, and Odia. All these packs are now available at a special price of Rs. 39* per month. We are delighted to offer the best of television series, drama, feature films, news, lifestyle content, and incredible new experiences, all at a great value to our consumers across the country.”
With a total of 59 channels (43 SD & 16 HD) in 11 languages reaching a total of 148 million households every day, ZEEL has been offering audiences in India ‘superhit’ entertainment cutting across genres. Whether it’s Pragya, Preetha, Zara Siddique or Bhabhiji in the Hindi Belt to Radhika in Maharashtra, Rani Rashmoni in West Bengal and many more in every region, our characters share a deep bond with viewers wanting them as dinner-table companions every day! The No.1 TV network that fulfills all the demands is Zee with its family packs that bring together the right assortment of superhit channels across the top genres of entertainment, movies, news, music, and lifestyle, making it a must-have for every family!
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The association tees-off with the live broadcast of the Abu Dhabi HSBC Championship scheduled from January 16-19, 2019
DSPORT, a premium sports channel of Discovery Communications, will broadcast live marquee events from the European Tour 2019, Europe’s premiere and one of golf’s strongest professional tours featuring some of the world’s top professional golfers.
The association tees-off with the live broadcast of the Abu Dhabi HSBC Championship scheduled from January 16-19, 2019.
The first tournament as part of the Rolex Series, the Abu Dhabi event will feature top golfers of the world like world number two and three Dustin Johnson and Brooks Koepka in a strong field.
Apart from Shubhankar Sharma, who became the first Indian to win the prestigious European Tour Rookie of the Year award last year, other top Indian golfers like Anirban Lahiri, Gaganjeet Bhullar and SSP Chawrasia among others can now be seen in live competition action throughout the year.
Hero MotoCorp, who already have golf legend Tiger Woods as their ambassador, and also present the Hero World Challenge Golf as well as the Hero Golf Challenge Events and the Hero Indian Open, will be the on air live telecast Partner on DSport.
One of the richest golf tours in the world, the top 19 tournaments of the 2019 season present a total prize money of $35mn with the DP World Tour Championship scheduled for November in Dubai, carrying a whopping $8mn prize purse.
Eight other tournaments will carry a purse of $5mn or more in prize money.
Among other top names of the golfing world who can be seen in live action besides those mentioned will be the likes of Rory McIlroy, Henrik Stenson, Sergio Garcia, Ernie Els and Thongchai Jaidee among others.
European Tour - Details of Top 19 Tournaments to be telecast on DSport are -
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eAuctions will now be based on a differential pricing to be determined by the genre (language) of channels. The auctions will take place on annual basis only
Prasar Bharati CEO Shashi Shekhar on Tuesday evening announced that DD Free Dish will be resuming e-Auctions to allocate DTH slots based on a revised policy. However, the date of the auction is yet to be announced.
In a series of tweets Shekhar highlighted the key aspects of the new policy. Shekhar said that a key consideration of the new policy was “to increase the diversity of content available on DD Free Dish and to expand its reach across India especially within the non-Hindi speaking states.”
This new policy “aspires to increase diversity of content by providing for low entry price points - differential genre based pricing for MPEG2 slots and invitational pricing for MPEG4 slots,” he added.
He said that the new policy “makes it attractive for channels from a cash flow standpoint through better payment terms. This will ease the burden on channels while lowering the entry barrier for channels.”
Happy to share that DD Free Dish will be resuming e-Auctions to allocate DTH slots based on a revised policy. Thankful to the @prasarbharati board which cleared the new policy and to Secy @MIB_India for support to the same, under the guidance and leadership of HMoSIB @Ra_THORe.— Shashi Shekhar (@shashidigital) January 15, 2019
Here are the highlights:
- e-Auctions will be based on a differential pricing to be determined by the genre (language) of channels. Private broadcasters desirous of carriage on DD FreeDish will have to declare the same to be eligible to bid in eAuctions.
- e-Auctions will be held on annual basis for all vacant unreserved slots to ensure a stable bouquet of channels.
- To lower the entry barrier for genres (languages) that are currently under represented on DD Free Dish the differential pricing for slots is split into 5 disparate buckets as opposed to the 2 buckets based on which eAuctions were previously held.
- Different Genres (languages) have been grouped within these 5 buckets with differential reserve pricing for slots in respective buckets.
- To promote the new DD Free Dish authorised Set Top Boxes the new policy also envisages invitational pricing for channels to also take up MPEG4 slots in addition to the existing MPEG2 slots.
- The new policy also provides for reservation of MPEG4 slots for further regional channels of Doordarshan to have a dedicated satellite footprint. These stations/kendras currently operate in terrestrial mode in several states.
The Ministry of Information and Broadcasting had suspended the e-auctioning of slots for DD Freedish in October 2017. The concern was that private broadcasters are harnessing the reach of Freedish to earn ad revenue.
Typically, Doordarshan conducts an e-auction multiple times a year to grant vacant channel slots on DD Freedish to private broadcasters. During the last such e-auction in July 2017, Doordarshan earned Rs 85.10 crore and awarded 11 slots to private broadcasters.
DD Free Dish DTH Platform according to latest market estimates has a base of 30 million households across India which is a significant rise over earlier estimates of about 22 million. Currently, DD Free Dish offers 72 channels and 39 radio channels. There were plans to this to 250 by the end of March 2018.
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During the quarter, ZEEL’s EBITDA grew by 26.9 per cent YoY to Rs 7,543 million
Zee Entertainment Enterprises Limited (ZEEL) and its subsidiaries announced the unaudited consolidated financial results for the quarter ended Dec 31, 2018. For the third quarter of FY19, ZEEL reported consolidated revenue of Rs 21,668 million. Earnings Before Interest, Tax, Depreciation and Amortization (EBITDA) was Rs 7,543 million with an EBITDA margin of 34.8 per cent. PAT for the quarter was Rs 5,624 million.
Subhash Chandra, Chairman, ZEEL said, “India is poised to remain one of the fastest growing economies in the world. Decline in crude oil prices and rationalization of GST rates will further boost the economy and help maintain the growth momentum in consumption. Even in M&E space, content consumption is growing at a brisk pace across mediums. This trend along with macroeconomic tailwinds will drive growth in both advertising and subscription revenues. We have delivered yet another quarter of strong performance across all our businesses. ZEE5 is scaling up in line with our expectations and is on course to become India’s number one digital entertainment platform.”
Punit Goenka, Managing Director & CEO, ZEEL said, “I am really pleased with our performance this quarter which further strengthens our position as India’s leading entertainment content company. While our television business continues to consolidate its number one position, ZEE5 is quickly establishing itself as one of the leading digital entertainment platforms in the country. ZEE5 has already become the biggest producer of Indian content amongst the digital platforms and the content offering will multiply going forward. Our expanding list of partnerships with telecom operators and players in the digital eco-system, coupled with innovation in pricing, will make ZEE5 accessible to a wider audience.”
“With the launch of our Malayalam channel, Zee Keralam, ZEEL now has the widest footprint in country in terms of the languages covered. It will help us further consolidate our network share. Advertising outlook for the industry looks upbeat and we aim to outpace the industry growth on the back of our growing network share. After much delay, TRAI’s tariff order is now set to be implemented across the country next month. I reiterate that this is a positive step for the industry in the long term and will be beneficial for everyone. While it will take some time for the new system to settle, we are working with all our partners for its smooth implementation,” added Goenka.
- Total revenue for the quarter was Rs 21,668 million, growth of 17.9 per cent YoY. The growth was driven by the strong performance of broadcast business.
- During the quarter, ZEEL’s consolidated advertising revenue grew by 21.7 per cent YoY to Rs 14,626 million. The 20.6 per cent growth in domestic advertising revenue YoY to Rs 13,719 million was driven by the continued strong performance of television business and aided by the emerging digital business. The advertising demand continues to be strong across categories, reflecting positively on the advertising growth outlook. International advertising revenue grew by 40.2 per cent YoY to Rs 907 million due to stronger traction in Europe, US and APAC region.
- Subscription revenue for the quarter was Rs 6,185 million, growth of 23.3 per cent YoY. Domestic subscription revenue grew by 28.6 per cent YoY to Rs 5,192 million. International subscription revenue was Rs 993 million.
- EBITDA for the quarter grew by 26.9 per cent to Rs 7,543 million and EBITDA margin stood at 34.8 per cent.
- ZEE5 continues its strong growth recording 56.3 mn MAUs in the month of December, growth of 36 per cent over the last 3 months.
- ZEEL further strengthened its position as the #1 television entertainment network with an allIndia viewership share of 20.2 per cent.
- Zee Keralam and Zee Keralam HD launched in Kerala market making ZEEL the biggest television network with presence in 9 Indian language markets.
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TV18 reported a 41% YoY jump in operating EBITDA to Rs 115 crores in Q3FY19
Network18 Media & Investments Limited and TV18 Broadcast Limited today announced its results for the quarter ended December 31, 2018.
Network18 reported an 18 per cent YoY jump in operating EBITDA to Rs 88 crores in Q3FY19, despite continuing investments into recent launches Colors Tamil and Colors Kannada Cinema. Operating revenue rose 20 per cent YoY led by advertising tailwinds, successful movies like ‘Andhadhun’, and healthy growth in subscription income. Operating leverage drove profitability, especially led by continued strong performance of regional channels across both our news and entertainment portfolios.
TV18 Broadcast Limited reported a 41 per cent YoY jump in operating EBITDA to Rs 115 crores in Q3FY19, despite continuing investments into recent launches Colors Tamil and Colors Kannada Cinema. Operating revenue rose 22 per cent YoY led by advertising tailwinds, successful movies like “Andhadhun”, and healthy growth in subscription income.
Adil Zainulbhai, Chairman of Network18, said, “Regional content consumption continues to see robust growth across all parts of the media industry that we play in, whether broadcasting or digital; and straddling news, entertainment and film. We continue to invest in digital with an eye on the future. We are extending our powerful brands across geographies, business models and mediums, to create the most compelling portfolio of properties in the opportunity-laden Indian media sector.”
Zainulbhai added, “TV18 has further solidified its leadership in as the top news player in the country, and our fast-growing entertainment portfolio is expanding our offerings as well as its core operating margins. Regional content consumption continues to be a key driver of growth across the board. We intend to continue investing to capture whitespaces and emerge as a leading, pipe-agnostic player in the broadcasting space.”
HIGHLIGHTS FOR THE QUARTER
The industry ad-environment was buoyant during the past quarter, though ad-spends were more concentrated around festive season and strong properties than previous years.
Broadcast subsidiary TV18 posted 22 per cent revenue growth on a comparable basis:
- Growing ad-spends in regional channels (news, led by regional elections; and entertainment, driven by rising consumption and value-perception) was a consistent theme for the TV18 channel portfolio.
- Subscription revenue for our entire bouquet grew 13 per cent YoY. Compelling bouquets have been created and advertised along with a-la-carte channel pricing, as per the new TRAI tariff order which promises to increase transparency in the broadcast value-chain.
News bouquet (20 channels) cemented its #1 position, with TV18’s viewership share in news rising to a highest-ever 11.5 per cent:
- News revenue grew at a robust 16 per cent. Regional news revenue grew 27 per cent YoY led by the viewership share of regional news cluster rising further to 6 per cent, vs 2.5 per cent two years ago.
- Hindi News channel News18 India solidified its #2 ranking, emerging as the primary engine of growth. The overall English news genre continued to face pressure.
- Business news channels maintained top positions amidst choppy markets.
Regional News losses have shrunk 68 per cent YoY to Rs 9 Cr: Rise in Government/ election-related ad spends substantially pruned gestation losses of 8 regional channels launched over FY15-17. Active cost control and efficiencies of scale also played a key role in reducing the drag.
Entertainment bouquet (Viacom18’s 31 channels + AETN18’s 4 infotainment channels) is #3 amongst national players, with share of entertainment viewership maintained at 11.2 per cent:
- Entertainment portfolio revenue grew 23 per cent YoY. As stated in previous quarters, some high value-and-impact Hindi GEC programming at Viacom18 was strategically shifted from H1 to H2, to coincide with market-appetite. This has resulted in improved topline growth, and has expectedly also partially limited the margin-expansion for the quarter. The Movie production and distribution revenue under Viacom18 motion pictures was Rs 106 Cr, versus a low base of Rs 20 Cr in Q3FY18.
(restated for current structure of ownership) Q3FY19 Q3FY18 Growth 9mFY19 9mFY18 Growth Consolidated Operating Revenue (Rs Cr) 1,524 1,267 20% 3,885 3,430 13% Consolidated Operating EBITDA (Rs Cr) 88 75 18% 200 134 49 per cent)
- Regional entertainment channels continued their viewership and monetisation improvements across most of our geographies.
Business-as-usual margins continued to rise: Entertainment EBITDA includes operating loss of Rs 31 Cr on account of new initiatives - Colors Tamil (launched in mid-Q4FY18) and Colors Kannada Cinema (launched in late-Q2FY19). Adjusting for operating losses of these new initiatives (i.e. launches made over past 4 quarters), BAU margins for Entertainment grew to 8.3 per cent from 6.4 per cent in Q3FY18. Entertainment EBITDA also encapsulates investments into projects planned for launch in coming quarters, as well as properties that were launched more than 1 year ago but are still under gestation.
Network18 digital content properties reach 24 per cent of total news consumption audience:
- Network18’s digital revenues from prime properties MoneyControl, News18 & Firstpost grew 27 per cent YoY to Rs 45 Cr in Q3. Other businesses including content production and print dragged overall revenue growth.
- Operating margin fell due to investments in revamp and extension of MoneyControl and Firstpost brands. While MoneyControl took initial steps to venture into transactions (mutual fund distribution) with the launch of MC Transact; Firstpost will soon be extended to discerning Print audiences through a weekly news-edition.
- Cricket portal CricketNext (#3 portal in India) was relaunched with a dedicated app.
- Traffic on Regional News content on News18.com rose 55 per cent, indicating the rising strength of the brand and the tailwinds in vernacular consumption in digital too, alongside broadcasting.
Leading entertainment ticketing platform BookMyShow entered into Live event production with world’s largest live entertainment company Cirque Du Soleil with their newest production show ‘Bazzar’. The show which was held for the first time in India in Nov-Dec18 at Mumbai & Delhi got an overwhelming response.
The scheme of arrangement for the merger by absorption of wholly-owned direct and indirect subsidiaries of Network18 and TV18 with the respective parent has been approved by the National Company Law Tribunal (Mumbai bench). The scheme has become effective from November 1, 2018, the appointed date being April 1, 2016. Accordingly, comparatives have been restated to include the financials of the transferor companies. The income-tax provision for the current quarter and nine months ended December 31, 2018 includes the impact of merger.
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Marvel HQ, a first-of-its-kind TV destination for all things Marvel
Disney XD, the children's television channel belonging to Disney India Media Networks, has a new avatar. The channel has been rebranded to Marvel HQ, the first-ever Marvel branded television destination in the world. Marvel HQ, an HD channel, is set to go live on January 20.
“We believe it was time to have a home for all things Marvel. Marvel, which is now a pop-culture phenomenon does very well across every single age group and geography. We see this in the response we get to our theatrical releases, consumer products, and television series as well. Hence, the birth of Marvel HQ,” said Devika Prabhu, Executive Director, and Head- Product, Media Networks, Disney India. She said that the idea was to create and curate a special Marvel experience for the viewers.
About 40% of Marvel HQ’s programming will be dedicated to Marvel’s super-heroes, villains, and their epic adventures. “We have animation series such as Ultimate Spider-Man, Avengers Assemble, Hulk and the Agents of SMASH, Guardians of the Galaxy, etc.” The big tentpole events for this channel will unfold during the summer, just in time to catch the attention of children in the age group nine and above. “In the summer we will introduce four new series: Marvel Future Avenger, a new series on Black Panther (Black Panther’s Quest), Marvel Rising: Secret Warriors, and Marvel Disk wars,” said Prabhu. In addition to the Marvel animation series, Marvel movies will also reside at Marvel HQ.
The promise of this channel is going to be “action, adventure, and content that reinforces Marvel brand values,” said Prabhu explaining how the content and programming on the channel will see a shift following the rebranding. “All the content on the channel will focus on optimism, heroism, friendship, and teamwork which are all Marvel brand values. Whatever content we get that complements our Marvel brand values is what we will schedule on the channel,” Prabhu added. For example, shows like Pokemon, Big Hero 6, Digimon, and Beyblade which are not part of the Marvel universe but have the same themes as Marvel content will be broadcast on the channel.
Prabhu said that turning Disney XD into Marvel HQ does not limit the scope of the channel and its programming. “The content and characters in the Marvel universe are already appealing to a large audience,” she said.
Marvel HQ will have multiple audio feeds in four languages - English, Hindi, Tamil, and Telugu. “We will have the same series available in these four languages and I do not think any other channel can make that offering right now.”
While Marvel HQ is first being offered in India, this model will be replicated elsewhere depending on the market demand in other geographies. “Marvel HQ fits very well with the plan that The Walt Disney Company has for Marvel in India. It gives us another extension to reach out to our consumers on Marvel.”
And finally, Prabhu says that the advertisers’ interest in this channel matches the typical excitement people have for Marvel. “Whenever we approach our partners for any association for Marvel we always have a great response,” she said.
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Blockbusters like ‘Saamy 2’, ‘VadaChennai’ to be part of the festive line-up
The South Indian TV channels have arranged a visual feast for the audience for Makar Sankranti, also known as Thai Pongal in Tamil Nadu.
Vijay Television has an array of programmes starting right from 6.30am with ‘Saravana Meenkashi VS Raja Rani- The Pongal War’, a cookery show.
The channel will also broadcast blockbuster movies, Vikram and Keerthy Suresh starrer ‘Saamy 2’. ‘Pariyerum Perumal’, one of the sleeper hits of 2018, will also be telecast on Tuesday.
On 16th January, an entertainment show ‘Mamiyar Marumagal’ will be broadcast on Vijay Television. A talk show by actor Sivakumar on Tamil actor Shivaji Ganeshan ‘Sivakumarin Shivaji Oru Sagaptham’ will also be telecast.
Dhanush starrer gangster film ‘VadaChennai’, ‘Kadaikutty Singam’, romantic comedy ‘Manam’ are few other movies that will be aired on Vijay Television as part of the Pongal celebrations.
Zee Tamil has also lined up special programmes for Pongal. Tamil techno-thriller ‘Irumbuthirai’ will be aired on the channel on Tuesday.
World Television Premiere of Vijay Sethupathi starrer ‘Junga’ will also be telecast on Zee Tamil. Super hit movies like ‘Kolamavu Kokila’ and ‘Mersal’ will too be broadcast on Zee Tamil.
Tamil GEC market leader Sun TV also has lined up a festival feast for the audience. They will be broadcasting Dhanush-Kajol starrer ‘VIP-2’, Vishal starrer ‘Sandakozhi -2’ and other special programmes for Pongal.
Neethu reports on media, marketing and advertising industry. In the past she has reported on start-ups, education and health sector for over 6 years.
Zee Café’s new show involves celebs like Ranveer Singh, Alia Bhatt, Katrina Kaif, Aamir Khan, Amitabh Bachchan, Karan Johar, Rajkumar Rao among others along with their BFFs revealing many secrets
English entertainment channel, Zee Café, brings an exciting line-up of Bollywood stars sharing glimpse of their blockbuster journey with host Komal Nahta on a new chat show - Starry Nights 2. Oh!
The show will witness the best of Bollywood stars along with their go-to person spilling the beans and revealing anecdotes that we never knew of. Find out which of your favourite stars was a Bollywood fanatic since their childhood and who had an Oh! moment at school.
From Ranveer Singh’s craziness to Alia Bhatt’s secrets, from Katrina Kaif’s bets to Aamir Khan’s journey of becoming an actor and much more stories from celebrities like Amitabh Bachchan, Karan Johar, Parineeti Chopra, Taapsee Pannu, Arjun Kapoor, Kareena Kapoor, Bhumi Pednekar, Vidya Balan and Rajkumar Rao.
Shaurya Mehta, Business Cluster Head – Premium channels, ZEEL said, “India being a Bollywood loving nation, cannot have enough of it. Starry Nights 2. Oh! is that weekly dose of entertainment which will allow our audience to have a sneak peek into their favorite celebrity’s life. Zee Café, known to televise the best of fresh content, is always on a search to showcase the finest entertaining shows. With many A-lister celebrities appearing on the show, it is sure to have a great take home for the audience. We are kick starting 2019 with a bang and the content line up along the year is only going to get more exciting. We continue to look forward to providing our audience with a wide variety of entertainment in the months to come.”
The show will have various twists and turns with the quickie round where the guests will answer an enthralling and sometimes baffling set of questions; guests will also engage in a fun quiz, competing with their bestie for a crown. The best answers for the tricky questions will take away the crown.
Keeping in line with its proposition, Zee Café has chalked out an extensive marketing campaign on their digital and on-air platforms. Urban Clap is the associate sponsor, and Jean-Claude Biguine is the gifting partner on the show for print and radio contests.
The show will make its debut on January 13 at 10 pm on Zee Café and will be on air every Sunday same time.
exchange4media Group Service
Continuing to hold the leadership position in the Urban market for the last 12 weeks, Zee Kannada has now earned the distinction of being the leader for the first time in the last 13 years
As per the BARC weekly data (Urban + Rural) for the first week of the year 2019, Zee Kannada has claimed the top position in the Kannada market with a total of 415 million impressions; 171 million impressions in the urban market, 244 million impressions in the rural market, with robust growth across its prime-time fiction shows. Continuing to hold the leadership position in the Urban market for the last 12 weeks, Zee Kannada has now earned the distinction of being the leader for the first time in the last 13 years.
Taking to the challenge of reaching the market leader position, Zee Kannada has secured 260 million impressions in its prime-time band, with its top shows including ‘Yaare Nee Mohini’, ‘Paaru’, and ‘Brahmangantu’. The channel has also secured leadership position across its prime-time slots in the Non-Fiction shows such a SRGMP15 & Drama Juniors 3.
Commenting on the ratings, Raghavendra Hunsur, Business Head of Zee Kannada said, “I am glad to congratulate the Zee Kutumba on kick-starting the year with a well-deserved celebration on achieving our goal of securing top honours in the Kannada GEC spacel. With the channel’s recently refreshed brand image, Zee Kannada has grown by leaps and bounds on the back of curating interesting concepts, storylines, and our success stands testimony to our steadily strengthening relationship with our viewers. We are extremely thrilled to be the number one Kannada general entertainment channel for the first time in the last 13 years and humbled by the overwhelming support of our partners and ardent viewers.”
Source: BARC India
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