India’s media market will see continued growth in print newspapers fueled by rising consumer purchasing power and advertising expenditures through at least 2012 when global digital trends may be begin to change the country’s landscape. This was the key conclusion to the INMA South Asia Conference in New Delhi November 14-15.
Titled “Building Market Cap In the Newspaper Enterprise,” the INMA South Asia Conference included presentations from the chief executive officers of three of India’s largest newspapers, as well as top executives from the leading private equity firm investing in newspapers, advertisers, media planners, and packaged-goods marketers. The conference also featured presentations from The Times of London and an INMA overview of global trends in newspaper publishing.
More than 140 delegates from India’s top newspaper companies attended this ground-breaking conference which primarily looked at what is driving value propositions for newspapers and how to grow advertising in a fast-changing market.
Nearly half the conference involved interaction with delegates. This executive summary provides a top-line look at formal presentations by speakers. INMA will hold its second annual South Asia Conference in India in November 2008.
Illustrative of the sea-change in Indian newspaper business practices and fortunes was Sanjay Gupta, chief executive officer and editor of Dainik Jagran. Considered the world’s most-read daily newspaper at 18 million per day across 110 editions, the Hindi-language giant has seen rapid growth with its outreach to readers. “We were listed two years back, and it has been an amazing story ever since,” Gupta said. “Other organisations shall take a leaf from our book and become open companies from closed ones. In the past two years, we have become more transparent, more accountable to our stakeholders, which has resulted in more value to all the parties involved.” Dainik Jagran still realises 95 percent of its revenue from print. But their CEO has an emerging vision of a multi-media company. Said Gupta: “It’s difficult to sell a package deal to advertisers, but if all features in the package become palatable, no advertiser will be able to resist the combo.”