02 December 2020 01:59

MediAvataar's News Desk

MediAvataar's News Desk

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Cricket Ireland has today announced ITW Consulting Pvt Ltd, a Global consulting and management agency with expertise in international cricket rights and sports media, as Ground Rights Holder for international home matches until 2022.

The agreement covers five home series that are expected to be played from 2021 to 2022, and will see ITW responsible for negotiating sponsor deals covering in-ground signage, 3D mats and boundary ropes. Brands will be able to leverage the exposure created through the global broadcast of men’s internationals, with an estimated reach in the hundreds of millions of viewers.

In July 2020, ITW was announced as the new Ireland Men’s shirt sponsorship rights holder and Official Sponsorship Consultancy Partner, and have previously held the ground rights in Ireland in 2018 for the men’s Test match against Pakistan and the T20I series against India.

Bhairav Shanth, Co-founder, ITW Consulting Pvt. Ltd., said:

“ITW has been at the forefront of a lot of opportunities in cricket and this is one of our most exciting because we believe in the potential that the sport has globally. It is rich with possibilities not just in the major cricket playing countries but beyond them too. We are delighted with Cricket Ireland’s paradigm-shifting progress both on and off the field and their well thought out vision for the future is something we are thrilled to be a part of. Through this association, we are committed to enabling Cricket Ireland realize that vision and grow further as a brand.”

Dennis Cousins, Commercial Director for Cricket Ireland, said:

“It is a demonstration of confidence in the strength and growth of Irish cricket to see this deal agreed during what is still an uncertain time for live sport around the world. Bhairav and the team at ITW have proven to be engaged and supportive partners, helping to drive commercial activity that is necessary to see Cricket Ireland and the sport in general to move forward through these difficult times.”

“Saying that, the strength and attractiveness of Irish cricket shouldn’t be under-estimated – approximately 429 million viewers tuned in to watch our men’s home internationals in 2019 alone, and with World Cup runners-up New Zealand and South Africa amongst sides visiting our shores in the next two years, this is an exciting time for cricket in Ireland.”

“We look forward to working closely with ITW over this time and seeing some high-level international cricket return to Ireland in coming seasons.”

A series of Fridays celebrating the fun-side of business and people

The Ad Club Bangalore is putting together a series of Fun Programmes to engage with the Advertising, Media and Marketing Fraternity this festive season.

The 3 week-long series starts on Dec 4th and will be held on Friday evenings through December. It will feature events like Open Mic Comedy, a fun quiz, Singing with a Twist and many other fun activities that make it mandatory for the participant to leave their home-office for a while and just let their hair down.

The BB Utsav is presented in partnership with Facebook and is open to all from the media, marketing and advertising community as long as they are members of The Ad Club Bangalore. The Club had recently announced that membership benefits for all who enrolled from June 2020 will be valid for a 2 year a period through June 2022.

Speaking on the BB Utsav, Laeeq Ali, President of The Ad Club Bangalore and Co-Founder - Origami Creative shared "We want to celebrate Big Bang differently this year. Considering the overall pandemic situation as well as the stress which the industry is going through, we have decided to call off the regular Big Bang Awards and the whole focus starting with Big Bang Utsav will be to celebrate as well as elevate the people. While the Big Bang Utsav is purely focused on fun and building the camaraderie within the advertising, media and marketing fraternity at large, we also plan to roll out a series of upskilling initiatives which will help the fraternity starting early next year."

Kishankumar Shyamalan - Head of the Big Bang Utsav 2020 and Chief Growth Officer - Wavemaker said "It is a very stressed environment out there currently and we wanted this program to come like a breath of fresh air. We have a series of programs spread over 3 weeks which will not just be fun, but also a refreshing break. I urge the entire advertising, media and marketing community to come, encourage your team members to join us and make this event a very memorable one."

Tuesday, 24 November 2020 00:00

TV9 Network forays into Bengal

To launch TV9 Bangla in the crucial state

TV9 Network, India’s largest television news network by reach, has embarked on a massive expansion plan for both its linear television as well as digital news businesses. The expansion plan will kick off with the launch of TV9 Bangla, a 24X7 news channel in the dynamic Bengal news market early next year.

Before the launch of TV9 Bangla, the network will unveil its digital offering, tv9bangla.com in December. As West Bengal prepares to go to the hustings, the grand entry of TV9 Bangla digital and TV platforms will be a game-changer for the robust Bangla news market.

Commenting on the Network’s foray into West Bengal, Barun Das, CEO, TV9 Network, said: “Gopal Krishna Gokhale had famously said ‘What Bengal thinks today, India thinks tomorrow’. But nearly a century later it would seem like that statement applies more to Bengal’s past than the present. An intellectually progressive state and exporter of the best talent to India and the world, we believe the state and its people still retain the wisdom and wares to make that its future as well. Bengalis are the typical Argumentative Indian, they want to keep her ear to the ground and hence are naturally drawn to news.

“More importantly, Bengalis are proud of their language and largely consume news in their language. The discerning Bengali viewer will always have room for a neutral perspective and a balanced opinion. That’s the place in the Bengali heart and mind that TV9 Bangla aspires to occupy. We are here to strike the right balance with neutrality and a fair perspective forming the core of our operations. Our unbiased coverage and world class presentation will give teeth to the Fourth Estate in West Bengal.”

On the timing of the launch, Das said: “The state is already into election mode. Indirect canvassing has already started and the heat is building up. Given Bengal’s propensity for free flow of information, news viewership is bound to peak. We believe this is a perfect opportunity for TV9 Bangla to establish its credentials and win the maximum share of viewership and voice.”

The network has onboarded veteran journalist Anjan Bandyopadhyay as the editor of TV9 Bangla news channel. A gold medallist from Calcutta University, Bandyopadhyay has 32 years of experience and has worked with almost all major media houses, including ABP, Zee, ETV and Sky Bangla. He was the editor of Zee 24 Ghanta and his last assignment was with ABP as its Editor-Digital.

Hiring for both the platforms is in full swing. Amritanshu Bhattacharya has also joined as the Editor, TV9 Bengali Digital and will also serve as Managing Editor, Output, for the television channel. Bhattacharya comes with a rich experience of more than 25 years across print, audio visual and digital media, having worked with Jugantar, Aajkaal, ETV and Zee Media Corp. His last assignment was as an Associate Editor and Head of Digital of Zee 24 Ghanta.

With the launch of TV9 Bangla, TV9 Network looks to further reinforce its regional dominance and consolidate its position as the No. 1 news network in the country.

People are more drawn to individual experiences and a collection of that content makes a platform: Sameer Nair - CEO, Applause Entertainment talks about the transition from Cinemas to Smartphones at the 11th U.S.-Asia Entertainment Summit

Since the world is shadowed by the pandemic, the consumption pattern of the audience has transitioned drastically. Entertainment industry has for one witnessed a radical change as its audience have taken to smartphones as theatres have taken the hit. This has further prodded the digital landscape to pick up greater pace and the streaming platforms across the world to acquire a fresh audience base. To bring these changes to light and platform an insightful discussion, Asia Society, Southern California, the leading educational organization dedicated to promoting mutual understanding and strengthening partnerships among peoples, leaders, and institutions of Asia and the United States in a global context, orchestrated a discussion on ‘Cinemas to Smartphones: Streaming Wars and the Future of Bollywood and India Content’.

The discussion was a part of the 11th U.S.-Asia Entertainment Summit, that attracts the most important and interesting speakers in U.S. and Asian entertainment. The country in focus was one of the largest consumer markets in the world, India. To represent the country on a global scale, Sameer Nair, CEO - Applause Entertainment, the content arm of the Aditya Birla conglomerate, shared his insightful perspective on the topic. Other eminent panellists in the discussion included the director, Shekhar Kapur, and entertainment lawyer, Gowree Gokhale.

The platform is known for providing insights, generating ideas and promoting collaborations across the fields of arts, business, culture, education, and policy to address present challenges and create a shared future.

Sameer at the lecture series highlighted the impact of COVID in India, the streaming industry, the future of television, and the big opportunities lying in India. Following are the excerpts:

OTT Landscape Development in India

This period is a lot like the early stages. It is more like the 90s for what it was for television in India with a whole bunch of channels coming up with a number of players and investors. Here we have a potential 500 million of an audience base and the streaming platforms have touched around 20 million, so it is a long way to go. India is a large market connected with smartphones and broadband connectivity, cheapest data in the world, already savvy with television and film, so this is a growth phase where there will be a lot of investment as we essentially move audiences from television to streaming.

Importance of Theatre in the Industry

Theatrical revenue is a very important revenue stream as when we draw a comparison between 9000 theatrical screens versus 900 million smartphone screens, we miss talking about the fact that the 900 million smartphone screens are not going to generate the sort of revenue as compared to what the country can potentially generate theatrically. So, taking the theatrical experience off the market translates to a significant economic change and you are also leaving a great chunk of retail revenue on the table. I think streaming platforms can compensate for those 80-100 billion dollars to offset the theatrical revenue loss.

The Future of Television in India

The linear television industry in India has reached 197 million TV and cable satellite homes. There is about 10-15 million more to go and it is now scraping the bottom of the barrel. As every content platform and every technology creates a content habit, TV was the classic talking to the consumer technology and it told you to watch your favourite shows at specific time slots so you had to reorder your life accordingly. On contrarian grounds, streaming platforms made content available to you whenever you want it, and that has been one big change in consumer habits. Also the way TV is going, I think it is going to play out. It is ad and subscriber dependent and it reached its scale. This is a decade where we will be able to see a gradual transitioning out of typical linear television to streaming platforms and then moving on to even more dramatic technological advancements.

Success of Scam 1992: The Harshad Mehta Story

People watch programmes not channels, and in a way how people watch movies and go to theatres because of the ambience, similarly now with platforms or with any form of content, people are more drawn to individual experiences and a collection of that content makes a platform. So there are things that can stand out, so that piece of content could succeed but for that platform to succeed the offering is much larger and deeper as eventually they depend on a subscription model or they want their customers to come back again and again. I think that while people watch shows and individual content, so for platforms to succeed they need lots of those.


With a spike in the consumption of entertainment content streaming online during the lockdown, the OTT platforms are likely to come out of pandemic and work from home situations at a better pace.

The path to recovery is looking a bit hard for cinema halls, hence OTT platforms can treat out new offerings. Now, even the movies have taken the OTT route for their releases without having to wait for pan-India theatre re-openings.

Amidst this, regional content is gaining momentum and attracting more viewers on the OTT platforms. There is an upward graph in consumption of dubbed cinema from the South, particularly Telugu and Tamil films.

To cater to the giant demand for regional content from the audience, here are 5 regional OTT platforms that are becoming the preference for the audience for dubbed regional content in today’s world –

Dollywood Play – Dollywood Play is a dedicated OTT platform for Hindi dubbed content aims to bring the best of mass entertainment content (movies & series) across a wide range of genres like Action, Adventure, Thriller, Horror, Comedy, Love, Drama and 18+. Witnessing the wide success & acceptance of Hindi dubbed content for South Indian & Hollywood movies on digital & linear platforms for its audience. The platform deals in dubbed content in the form of full movies, Mini movies, video clips, Music videos, etc.

Aha – Aha is an Indian over-the-top streaming service owned by Arha Media & Broadcasting Private Limited, a joint venture by Geetha Arts and My Home Group which offers Telugu-language content. Launched officially in March 2020, service is loaded with films from pre OTT era from various production houses. Arjun Suravaram, Kaithi Telugu dubbed version and Choosi Choodangaane are the first set of the feature films acquired by the service as official streaming partner

Hoichoi – Hoichoi is the on-demand platform focuses on Bengali language films and entertainment content mainly, but also provides English subtitles to all movies. Currently, it features over 500 film titles, including more than 100 SVF produced films and about 400 other films. Apart from this, Hoichoi contains more than 1,000 Bengali songs for audio streaming globally. The platform is also introducing children's content, and has original films, web series and short films across many genres.

Olly Plus – Olly Plus was launched in 2020, By Sk Line Production Olly Plus is Odisha's new online Odia OTT platform where you can enjoy unlimited Odia Videos, Albums, Movies, Comedy Videos, Short Films, Audio Storys and Romantic videos on the go. Olly Plus has passionate plans to make the Cinema of Odisha touch a new height.

Sun Nxt – Sun NXT is an Indian video on demand service run by Sun TV Network. It was launched in June 2017 with content in four languages focusing the South Indian region. In February 2020, the platform's subscriber base grew to about 15 million users and started making profit. It is available free on Vodafone Play, Jio Cinema, Airtel Xstream.

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