The revenue of the city's municipal corporation has taken a hit with eye-catching advertisements placed around Delhi feeling the pinch of the economic slowdown. The Municipal Corporation of Delhi (MCD) has not received a single applicant for the 50 tenders that were floated by it for display of advertisement through light emitting diode (LED) screens to be installed at various markets. The MCD was hoping to earn Rs. 12 crore per year through this.
"The business of outdoor publicity is down by 50 per cent. The main objective of the project was to make sure the MCD will not have to spend anything on the LED screens as they were to be provided by the company that was to be selected through the tenders. But as there is a slump in the market not a single company has come forward," said a senior MCD official.
Sources say the companies are not responding because not only are they to provide LED screens, but also would have to pay a minimum amount of Rs. 2 lakh to the civic agency per month. "The cost of installing a LED screen comes to around Rs 1-1.5 crore. In addition to this, the reserve price has been kept at Rs. 2 lakh. Companies are not in a financial condition right now to follow through with this," added the official.
Looking at the dismal response it has received the civic agency is now mulling over reducing the reserve price too.
These screens, which woudl have carried social messages and advertisements, were suppose to be installed at various prime locations such as Green market, Priya's Vasant Vihar, Greater Kailash II market, Defence Colony, Mayur Vihar among others. There has also been a reduction in the number of advertisement displayed through hoardings in the city. According to the MCD, 25 percent of advertisement sites are lying vacant as the civic agency has not received any response. In cases where a response has been forthcoming, quoted prices have been below the reserve price. "In Defence Colony contractors have surrendered the sites where advertisement were to be placed on building wraps as they are in a financial crunch," said the official.
Recently, the civic agency's parking project also hit a roadblock with contractors showing unwillingness to carry out the project for lack of funds. It was then suggested ceiling on financial qualifications of firms should be raised.