Sony guns for R400-cr revenue with 10-sec KBC spots at R5.5 L

Written by Sohini Mitter | Mumbai | Updated: Aug 27 2012, 07:09am hrs
Multi Screen Media (MSM)-owned Sony Entertainment Television (SET) has sold 10-second ad spots for the opening weekend of the iconic quiz show Kaun Banega Crorepati (KBC) for a record R5.5 lakh each.

The sixth season of KBC goes on air on September 7. The remaining ad inventory for the 58 episodes of the show, to be hosted by Amitabh Bachchan, has been sold to advertisers at R3.75 lakh per 10 seconds of air time. This is 15% higher than the ad rate of last season, which saw a contestant from Bihar win the full prize money of R5 crore.

KBC 6 has witnessed some differential pricing in ad rates for the first weekend, as theres huge demand for the show, which was a blockbuster last season, a top Sony official told FE. Interest from advertisers is very high and we expect to garner R400 crore in ad revenue this season, the official added.

KBC 6's differential pricing for the opening weekend sets a record of sorts in the general entertainment channels (GEC) category, where ad rates for daily soaps range between R75,000 and R1.25 lakh, depending on the viewership. It is also higher than the ad rates for the much-talked-about social reality show Satyamev Jayate on Star Plus. Earlier this year, Satyamev Jayate, hosted by Aamir Khan, had claimed ad rates of R4-4.5 lakh for 10-second slots, with Airtel paying a hefty sum of R18 crore for the title sponsorship.

Such rates are comparable to high-profile cricket tournaments like the World Cup or the IPL, where certain matches, especially semi-finals and finals fetch higher revenues than others, said a media buyer. These rates are unheard of on GECs. The channel has roped in Cadbury India as the title sponsor and the show will be powered by Idea Cellular. Sources indicated that the cellular service provider had entered into a revenue-sharing agreement with the channel. Idea, however, did not respond to an email sent by FE. Associate sponsors of the show include Axis Bank, Aakash Educational Services, Just Dial, CEAT Tyres, Maruti Suzuki, Sony Bravia, Lenovo and Hero Motor Corp.

We have shelled out more money this year as the season lasts longer, and the air-time per episode has also increased, said Axis Bank CEO Manisha Gupta. The bank is the cheque partner for KBC 6. Our association with KBC allows us to integrate our brand in the show, instead of just being sponsors. We come at a high point in the episode when the contestant is handed over the prize money, she added.

The positioning of KBC 6 is 'the power of knowledge' for which the channel has roped in Aakash Educational Services as one of its sponsors. The firms director Aakash Chaudhry said: We have pioneered this initiative with KBC as the programme itself, along with its central theme this year, is truly in sync with our philosophy.

Industry experts believe that a marquee show like KBC, whose viewership cuts across demographic profiles, creates a huge impact on viewers. A show like KBC runs on premium perception. It is a marquee property for the channel and gauges all sorts of viewers, KPMG media & entertainment head Jehil Thakkar had told FE in an earlier interaction.