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Sambhar Mafia - Cooked To Kill!

Wednesday, September 21, 2005

The 'Print Party' continues

At a time when the developed markets (US & Europe) are witnessing a decline in newspaper readership, dailies in India and China have been witnessing unprecedented growth. The number of new newspaper launches and the media IPO’s reflect the true state of this boom.

Similar to the FDI in Retail, FDI in print is also a contentious issue. The government’s decision to allow fax copies of international newspapers is unlikely to have any impact. How many people would be interested in buying an overpriced print edition of IHT published from S’pore / HK. If FDI is allowed, the Business Standard – Financial Times (UK) would give market leader ET a run for its money. TIME magazine captures some of these aspects in its latest issue:

Newspapers grabbed 46% of the $2.6 billion spent on advertising in all Indian media last year. Smelling big profits in the combination of rising circulation and advertising, India's newspaper barons have now unleashed the biggest newspaper war in their country's history. Until recently, most cities have been dominated by one major English-language newspaper. Bombay, for example, was Times of India territory. A handful of families controlled India's major newspapers, and a gentleman's agreement largely kept them off each other's turf. Not anymore. In Bombay, a new English newspaper called DNA (as in Daily News and Analysis) has launched an advertising blitz, buying dozens of giant billboards around the city, as it prepares to take on the Times of India. At the same time, the Times launched a new tabloid, the Mumbai Mirror. To thicken the melee, the Hindustan Times, a leading New Delhi paper, also entered the fray. Bombay is currently experiencing India's most febrile newspaper battle, but it's not the only one. In Madras, the Deccan Chronicle is aggressively taking on The Hindu, India's most respected English-language paper.

The same issue also has an interview with Aamir Khan

(Pic Courtesy: TIME)


  • IMO, we should never compare India/China with Europe and say X is declinin in Europe while it is rising in India/China. Europe is a very mature market. They have been there, done that. The current growth we have is very less compared to what they achieved centuries ago, and immediately after the 2nd world war. It is like comparing a child with an adult.

    By Anonymous Lumbergh-in-training, at 2:03 PM  

  • I remember reading a similar report in 'The economist' few months back about the booming newspaper mania everywhere... You could observe it in our Central Railway station paper kiosk... you may have more than 30 daily newspapers in front of you to choose..

    By Blogger Ram.C, at 4:15 PM  

  • Journalism and journalistic ethic and spirit as we know them now, might soon become history, going by the cut throat competition and the prioritization of stakeholders' ROI.
    News reporting and insightful editorials will give way to soft-porn, Page 3 Haute couture, sensationalism and official line-towing....
    Gives me the creeps :)

    By Blogger Bala (Karthik), at 5:16 PM  

  • @Lumbergh,
    This was just to get a global picture. the international media houses are trying to invest in India only bcoz their home turf has been affected

    I also remember reading it in Economist. There are too many newspapers these days.

    When people ToI can sell the editorial space, anything can happen.

    By Blogger Kaps, at 5:20 PM  

  • US is a country where people watch The Daily Show on Comedy central for news. That itself tells a lot about the preferred news delivery channel !!

    This article is a bit old but check it out

    By Blogger Havoc, at 10:12 PM  

  • kolkata has always seen battles between statesman and telegraph :) and then Asian Age, TOI etc.

    By Blogger Prerona, at 11:56 PM  

  • Kaps,

    True, with newpapaers like Deccan Chronicle doing agressive marketing, their penetration levels are starting to increase. You should see the kind of picture aids that come along with headlines in DC... You won't think twice before buying it.

    Also, lotsa interesting things happening in and around india which sure is making every Indian wanting to keep himself updated as it in some way or the other has an impact on him.

    By Blogger Somu, at 12:44 AM  

  • good one sir...

    By Blogger crsathish, at 1:08 AM  

  • Many people feel that there is a big outsourcing opportunity in print as well. Check out www.pragati.com. I met the CEO of the comapny. He is an excellent person.

    By Blogger Chanakya, at 2:27 AM  

  • @Havoc,
    TV channels are gradually replacing newspapers....thanks for the article

    More competition is better for the consumer

    With a daily circulation of more than 2 lakhs DC has definitely made a mark in Chennai

    @CR Sathish,

    Will check out Pragati. Hvn't heard of outsourcing in print.

    By Blogger Kaps, at 10:42 AM  

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