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DD may draw big World Cup ad pie
Bipin Chandran & Parul Gupta in New Delhi |
January 14, 2003 12:27 IST
Even as Doordarshan is in talks with ESPN-Star Sports for a tie-up for the telecast of the cricket World Cup, LG Electronics, one of the title sponsors of the cup, has decided it will not advertise on Sony Entertainment Television at all during the cricket carnival beginning in South Africa next month and will instead put its money on Doordarshan.
Ganesh Mahalingam, general manager (marketing), LG Electronics India, said: "We're going to remain completely with Doordarshan and are not even negotiating with SET because the rates are too high. Besides, Doordarshan caters to a tremendous amount of viewership and targets all our emerging markets, so it makes sense to stick with Doordarshan."
Doordarshan has the rights to telecast 16 World Cup matches on its terrestrial network.
These matches include six matches that India play, eight knockout matches and the two semi-finals. Doordarshan is also trying to get the rights of the remaining World Cup matches for a deferred telecast. It is negotiating with ESPN-Star Sports for programming before and after the matches.
It is learnt that ESPN-Star Sports has offered to show these special programmes anchored by its team of commentators simultaneously on Doordarshan and its own network.
"The West Indies tour of India was a great success and we are expecting a similar response for our World Cup telecasts also. We are looking at getting the rights to telecast the other matches also," said a Doordarshan official. Doordarshan made Rs 55 crore (Rs 550 million) during the West Indies tour and hopes to make a lot more during the World Cup.
While LG has decided to go the whole hog with Doordarshan, some of the other big spenders like Coca-Cola are expected to go with both SET as well as Doordarshan.
"We're going to retain a mix on both the channels and will target the satellite as well as the non-satellite towns," said Coca-Cola India cice-president (marketing) Shripad Nadkarni.
While admitting that LG had moved out, SET, which has the exclusive satellite telecast rights of the World Cup, said it had struck sponsorship deals with Pepsi, Hero Honda and Hindustan Lever.
SET, company executives claim, has sold six out of seven prime sponsorships and about 65 per cent of its advertising inventory for the telecast.
"The last couple of weeks have been very good for us. We have sold about 65 per cent of our inventory. The focus for the next few weeks will be to sell the remaining airtime," said Rohit Gupta, vice-president, SET Max.
Gupta also said the sponsorship for the shows like highlights was also completely sold out. "We have struck deals for main sponsorships with six brands. We have to close one more," Gupta said, adding that the remaining slot would be sold soon.SET has increased its advertising rates substantially for the World Cup programming.