Vissa TV banks on grounds events, movie acquisition to raise channel share

MUMBAI: Regional channel Vissa TV has finally zeroed on an action plan to better its performance in the Telugu television arena.

The Telugu channel from Raj Television Network Limited will be introducing more shows based on ground events and giving a complete make over to its film programming to shed the 'underdog image' it had been carrying ever since its launch in June 2003.

According to the latest channel share figures released by TAM (Andhra Pradesh 1 mn + towns including Hyderabad, 23 May to 19 June) Vissa TV holds a modest 2 per cent share.

Talking to, Vissa TV vice president R Radhakrishnan explained the reasons why the channel had been faring poorly: "Basically we are new entrants in the Andhra Pradesh television arena and we have been facing fierce competition. Taking into account the Telugu's craze for films, we have this handicap called 'fresh movies'. The older channels hold the chunk of popular movies"

Radhakrishnan revealed that Vissa had adopted an aggressive movie acquisition strategy and would be looking to acquire the maximum number of new films available this year.

Talking about the extra measures taken by Vissa to tap the maximum audience share from the film-crazy viewer segment, Radhakrishnan said the channel had started telecasting Telugu feature films on weekday afternoons and on Friday nights.

Radhakrishnan said the channel would be launching as many as five new shows in the next three months, which include two ground event based shows.

"We are planning a fashion show during the first week of August, followed by a model hunt in September 2004 across seven to eight major towns in Andhra Pradesh."

The channel has also bagged exclusive telecast rights of the South Indian Filmfare awards for an estimated Rs 5 million. The show will air on 11 July. The live event was held on 12 June.

Vissa TV will launch a daily show for women in August targeting the afternoon band. Two interactive programmes are also being lined up for an immediate launch.

Commenting on Vissa TV's progress with the launch of its news channel Vissa News, Radhakrishnan said they were in the process of setting up infrastructure and the launch would take place during early 2005.

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