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Home > Business > Special


Tee-time glossy

BS Bureau | August 27, 2003

Living Media's Golf Digest will soon have competition. Magazine publishing house, Media Transasia India Ltd is launching a new glossy for golfers.

Titled GolfStyle, the monthly is priced at Rs 150 and will be launched in September. Interestingly, Media Transasia has tied up with sports marketing company, Tiger Sports Marketing for sourcing content for GolfStyle.

According to Media Transasia's president and CEO, K C Jacob, GolfStyle's USP is that it is the official magazine for the PGA Indian Tour.

"This means we will have access to some of the best exponents of the game in the country," he says. That, he claims, is what also makes it different from the existing products.

"We're different from Golf Digest in that 80 per cent of our content is Indian," says Jacob. He feels that golf is evolving in the country and the Indian players cannot be ignored.

For starters, GolfStyle is looking at a print run of 15,000 copies. "But that's the initial number as we would do a lot of sampling. Ultimately, we expect to settle down at about 8,000 copies per month," feels Jacob.

A majority of the sales is likely to be through subscription though the magazine will also be available on news-stands in upmarket localities.

But does a golf magazine have any market in India? Sure, the number of golf courses is increasing and so are the number of golfers. Put together, the golf courses in India have at least 4,00,000 members.

"Obviously, not all the members are golfers. But we hope to tap at least 10 per cent of this market," says Jacob.

Besides, Media Transasia's survey showed that keen golfers bought at least two to three foreign golf magazines. "We hope to get some converts," he adds.

Besides, viability does not seem to be an issue with a golf magazine. "Since it is an upmarket game, played by high networth individuals, we're expecting a good response from companies manufacturing premium products," says Jacob.

Watches, accessories, automobiles, mobile phones and even office automation brands are something that the company is hoping to tap.

Besides, GolfStyle, Media Transasia is also launching a political monthly called National Review. The magazine will look at "news behind the news", says Jacob.

National Review is not meant to be a mass market product and will not compete with the existing political magazines, informs Jacob.

"It will cater to a small niche market of people craving for in-depth news analysis," he adds.

Media Transasia plans to launch at least two magazines every year, as "it's the only way for a small media company like ours to grow", feels Jacob.

A Rs 18-crore (Rs 180-million) company, Media Transasia India Ltd publishes an in-flight magazine for Indian Airlines as well as in-house magazines for automobile companies Honda and Maruti.

In addition it also produces Architecture Plus Design and Indian Design & Interiors. Its Discover India magazine is printed in English, German, French and Japanese.

The company is owned by J S Oberoi, a non-resident Indian, who has interests in publishing in Thailand and owns 26 magazines worldwide.


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