Star Movies, which telecast the Oscars live, made a killing on the programme by charging a huge premium on its regular advertising rates.
The hype about the possibility of Slumdog Millionaire winning several Oscars had raised interest in the programme to a fever pitch.
Star Movies cashed in on this by charging a premium of 400-700 per cent over its regular ad rates of Rs 2,500-4,000 per 10 seconds.
“Star Movies charged up to Rs 20,000 per 10 seconds,” said Chandradeep Mitra, who has just quit as the president of media agency Mudra Max.
The Star group's executive vice president for advertising sales, Kevin Vaz, said: “For spot price, the rates have been much higher at Rs45,000 to Rs50,000. Over and above that, we have 11 sponsors with LG as the presenting sponsor and the others like CISCO, Axe, Vodafone, and ICICI Bank. They have also paid a higher premium. If we take last year’s Oscars, our overall premium is 50 % higher this time."
Nandini Dias, chief operating officer, Lodestar Universal, a leading management and marketing consultancy firm, said her agency bought slots for Garnier, one of the associate sponsors of the telecast event, as well as a couple of other clients, on a package deal offered by Star Movies.
“We paid a 200 per cent premium over normal rates for Garnier, and for a couple of other clients,” Dias said.
Was the viewership of the Oscar Awards in India higher this year than in previous ones? Precise data on this will come in only after a few days, but Dias is certain that it is, indeed, the case.
“But the viewership would not have been as high as some prominent film awards in India. However, now that the results are known, the Oscar Awards replay in the evening will definitely have higher viewership than in the morning,” she added.