HLL, Star resolve ad row

Mumbai, Apr 27 | Updated: Apr 28 2007, 07:57am hrs
Indias largest advertiser, Hindustan Lever Ltd (HLL), and broadcaster Star India have resolved their differences over advertising rates, settling for a new deal. HLL was pushing for renegotiated ad rates with the Star network following the rollout of the conditional access system in Kolkata, Mumbai and Delhi from January this year, citing a drop in viewership ratings.

HLL currently spends over Rs 400 crore on TV advertising alone, at least Rs 100 crore of that is spent on Star. In the past few days, HLL pulled all its advertisements from the Star network. Yes, there were differences with HLL in the past, but we have resolved our differences more or less, said Paritosh Joshi, president, advertising sales & distribution, Star India.

According to industry sources, HLL and Star India are expected to finalise new terms and conditions to strike a new deal very soon. When contacted, an HLL spokesperson declined to comment.

Meanwhile, HLL is planning to spend more money on other channels after the Star episode, according to industry sources. Joy Chakraborty, network sales head, Zee, admitted that HLL had increased its inventory in the last few months.