Mudra Bags Rs 25-crore Samsung Account

New Delhi: | Updated: Oct 23 2002, 05:30am hrs
Riding high on its strong position in the GSM (Global System for Mobile communications) handset segment, South Korean electronic major Samsung now plans to pitchfork its brand in the nascent but high potential code division multiple access (CDMA) cellular telephone handsets market with a high-decibel Rs 25-crore advertising budget.

In a recent move, the electronics giant has awarded the account to Mudra Advertising following a multiple agency pitch. Among its CDMA clients is Reliance Infocom, a company slated to be the largest CDMA player in the market. The firm is expected to roll out its services by December 2002.

According to Mudras vice-president Hemant Mishra, since CDMA phones incorporate data, video and voice facilities which are far more advanced than those found in existing phones, Samsungs CDMA handsets campaign will, therefore, highlight the difference the new technology can make. The task of creating awareness about the technology will however, be left to the service provider, says Mr Mishra.

CDMA phones are not yet commonly used in India as most telephony service providers are using GSM. But telecom industry experts expect the demand for CDMA cellular phones to explode to over one million a year within the next three years.

Service providers on the CDMA platform are increasingly finding the need to market phones which will compete with GSM phones on both price and features.

CDMA phones were being imported from manufacturers like Hyundai for US $ 220 to US $ 240 a year ago but prices have fallen since then.

The idea is to market easily affordable handsets at half the GSM handset prices, says Mr Mishra.

Reliances services will be competing with other players in the CDMA space like Tata Teleservices, which has successfully launched the service in Andhra Pradesh and is expected to offer the service in Delhi by December. Public sector companies Mahanagar Telephone Nigam Ltd and Bharat Sanchar Nigam Ltd are also offering CDMA-based services.