Zee News Ltd (ZNL) is retreating the Telugu news market. Zee 24
Gantalu has decided to close down next month as it struggled to
become economically viable in a crowded marketplace where there
are too many politically-oriented channels.
Gantalu will close down on 20 September. There are 14 Telugu news
channels operating in that market and two more are launching. They
are politically driven and it does not make sense to continue in
that market," a source familiar with the development said.
TV Telugu news ad market is pegged at Rs 1.2 billion. The market
leader TV9 takes away a major chunk of this amount, according to
an industry source. Price wars are rampant, making channels sell
to advertisers at miserable rates.
entire Telugu TV news business is becoming unviable because of too
many players and abnormally low ad rates. Other interests rather
than business seems to be the primary motive," says a senior
news channel executive.
decision also comes ahead of its plans to launch an English-language
general news channel that will consume heavy capital. The closure
of 24 Ghantalu will help cut down ZNL's losses from new businesses
and ease pressure on the company's operating profit if it goes ahead
with the launch of the English channel.