TV 18 Broadcast has announced the launch of CNBC Bajar, a Gujarati business pay channel. The channel goes on air on 1 July 2014, with Sanjay Pugalia as editor-in-chief.
The channel has on board sponsor support at launch. Infibeam.com is ‘partner’, and Bajar is being presented ‘in association with’ Adani and Ganesh Housing. The deals 'run into multiple years', said a network spokesperson.
The content will be a mix of live markets coverage from NSE, BSE, commodities and currency, besides feature shows on aspects such as personal finance, entrepreneurship, property and lifestyle, informed a Network18 statement.
Pugalia said, “The channel is armed with a global attitude and the pace of a general news channel. We have added stronger doses of content around SME, retail, bullion and commodity into the typical mainstream mix of business news. We will focus both on the micro markets within Gujarat as well as the global markets which affect the investment and business decisions of the business savvy Gujaratis.”
Anil Uniyal, CEO, CNBC channels and Forbes India, explained the business rationale behind the channel. He said, “On every economic parameter, from industrialisation to GDP per household, Gujaratis are top performers today. However, there isn’t enough content being created to serve this hugely affluent set of viewers. It was thus a very simple decision for us when we decided to start this channel."
Responding to queries over e-mail, the CEO explained that a mix of intuitive understanding of the audience and research went into the decision to launch Bajar.
He said, "Over the last 15 years of CNBC TV18 and 10 years of CNBC Awaaz, we have developed an understanding of business viewers in different markets. Looking at the Gujarati community and its foremost presence and interest in business, intuitively, it made sense to have an offering which catered and engaged with this audience in their language. This coupled with our research revealed that the current offering across business platforms were moderated and aimed at a very broad audience. While the Gujarati viewer already understands the nuances of the market, he needed a tool now to stay ahead and make his every decision count. This was one very big gap in what was being offered and what was needed."
On possible cannibalisation of viewers from the network's Hindi business channel CNBC Awaaz, Uliyal noted that while some degree of canabilisation was natural and expected, the net addition of viewers would be substantial.
"Making inroads into the Gujarati community, reaching out to cities such as Vapi, Valsad, Surendra Nagar and Morbi will help in expanding the viewer base. Also, with the commodity offering kicking in the evening, a whole new community of audiences will open. And these will be brand new. So what we add with CNBC Bajar will outdo anything CNBC Awaaz may lose,” he explained.
The intent is to target Gujaratis in Gujarat, in the rest of India and abroad, informed the statement announcing the launch. The US will be among key markets outside India, said Uniyal, given the large Gujarati diaspora.
A marketing campaign on the theme Business Ni Mathrubasha (The mother tongue of business) will promote the launch. The creative agency is Ogilvy & Mather.
View the promo video here: