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Himani Chandna Gurtoo, Hindustan Times
New Delhi, May 17, 2012
The fifth season of the Indian Premier League (IPL) that went through disappointing viewership ratings and lukewarm brand response is finally seeing some action. With a few more matches to go, advertising rates have begun to soar.
SET Max, the official broadcaster of the event is selling 10-second commercial spots for Rs. 10 lakh for the last four matches beginning from May 22 to May 27. “We are charging in excess of Rs. 10 lakh for the last four matches, including the semi-finals and the final,” said Rohit Gupta, president, network sales for Multi Screen Media, the company that owns SET Max. “Five advertisers have been finalised by now and for many others we are in the process of closing the deals as we have limited inventory.”

Gupta did not disclose the names of advertisers.

However, the slot rate is substantially less compared with the Rs. 15-18 lakh that the channel garnered last year.

“The stunt (lowering prices) would help the channel boost final collection of funds,” said Navin Khemka, managing partner, ZenithOptimedia, a media buying agency that handles brands including Reckitt- Benckiser and Honda. “Otherwise, the channel has failed to monetise over 40% of inventory per match.  From the available 2,500 seconds per match, it has managed to sell fewer than 1,600 seconds.”

“The inventory is almost booked considering the fall in prices for the final stages,” said Sudha Natrajan, CEO, Lintas Initiative Media.