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Rain, India’s performance spell trouble for Videocon Cup

30-August-2004
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Rain, India’s performance spell trouble for Videocon Cup

TAM numbers for the opening match of the Videocon Cup are out. The series had the industry excited with strong teams contending but the first set of numbers indicates that the match has not delivered as per industry expectations. The media industry expressed deep concern when aMap numbers were out. While TAM numbers do offer some comfort in comparison, on the whole, Videocon Cup's first match numbers are not comforting enough.

Looking at the performance with the Indian viewers, the match generated 7.01 for Max for the CS 4+ in the all India market for duration of five and a half hours (6.00 pm to 11.30 pm). The delayed match began with 5.18 gaining more eyeballs as it proceeded, giving the final hours a rating of 8.26.

“On the face of it, these numbers are fine but for this series, these are below expectations,” expresses CR Mallikarjundas, Media Director, Starcom, “The fact that the match was delayed might explain the slow start. On the whole, I won’t call the numbers dismal but they are not good either.”

Agreeing with the point, Prasanth Kumar, Investment Director, Maxus, GroupM, further adds, “Literally grace. There is nothing fantastic about these numbers. The match was delayed due to rain and even the duration was reduced. Also, the performance of the Indian team itself can explain these ratings.”

A point to delve into here is that these numbers aren’t much varied from that of the Asia Cup. The fraternity didn’t seem to complain then. Then, why are the Videocon Cup numbers seen in a discouraging light? “This is a top billing series,” replies Mallikarjundas, “With these three teams playing, the ratings just don’t match expectations, which wasn’t really the case with the Asia Cup.”

“There were some 13 odd matches in the Asia Cup and teams like UAE and Bangladesh were in the picture then,” adds Kumar, “Also with the way Videocon Cup was charged, these numbers don’t prove value for money to advertisers.”

One point that both planners make here is that the build up to the match wasn’t strong enough. “The India-Pakistan craze cannot decrease. But it is also important that the interest is piqued even further to attract more eyeballs. That was what happened with the Samsung Cup, with all the talk of the teams meeting after so many years and creating buzz like that. But that doesn’t seem to be the case with this Cup. There wasn’t sufficient noise made around it,” shares Mallikarjundas.

Seconding that, Kumar points that with the rains intruding in the other matches as well and India not making it to the finals might just prove to be a problem for the forthcoming numbers as well, “It’s a wash out. And the fact that this was a knockout series doesn’t help either. Both rains and India’s performance have proved to be a problem here.”

Taking the problem to another level, Kumar expresses that from the World Cup to the Samsung Cup, to now the Asia Cup and the Videocon Cup, cricket as a property is generating lower numbers. Says he, “The expectations from India -Pakistan matches is that they deliver more than what most properties can ever deliver. Now with the decrease in the numbers, this is turning to be a cause of concern. People have to look at other ways of utilising these properties now.”

The Videocon Cup’s first match’s numbers are either just what the planners were hoping for or below expectations. Rains and the team’s performance together decide how happy the advertiser would be with his investment. One thing that the numbers have managed to do is raise a few more questions on the kind of money that is currently pumped in cricket.

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