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Soon, free paper for metro commuters

delhi Updated: Jul 16, 2011 23:14 IST
Shalini Singh
Shalini Singh
Hindustan Times
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In over a month from now, Delhi's metro commuters will get what most of their counterparts in other European countries receive on their daily ride — a free newspaper. Touted to be India's first free English daily, Delhi On The Go, is the brainchild of two city-based entrepreneurs — Virat Mohan, 26, and Ankit Dhawan, 25 — who after a brainstorming session one day decided to invest their savings in this business venture than spend it on an MBA.

"It was a eureka moment for us," grins Dhawan, a Steve Jobs fan who has earlier worked for a Fortune 500 company. "After our research we found that it's a successful model in other countries, so why not replicate one for the Delhi metro riders."

"It's an unexplored market right now and we found a massive captive audience in the 16-17 lakh daily metro travellers of which 67% is our target audience — working professionals and the youth," adds Mohan, who has studied at London School of Economics.

The paper has tied up with major news agencies such as IANS, Reuters, ANI and will bring out news on national, business, world, local, entertainment, sports etc. Like the free metro paper format in other countries, this tabloid format too aims to get its revenue from advertising that will later include sponsorship tie-ups.

"Any person travels an average of 20-30 minutes on the metro with nothing to do. Instead of getting bored, they might as well read. We will steer clear of sensationalising news. The idea is to keep it as relevant as possible," says Mohan.

The entrepreneurs have added a personal touch - a representative at every station will give out copies to commuters. The tabloid has tied up with Marwah Studios as their media partner and Radio Noida 107.4 FM as their official radio partner. Sandeep Marwah is Founder Film City & Marwah Studios.