Animax to launch with two-hour Hindi feed

MUMBAI: The stage is set and almost ready for the launch of the fourth channel from the Sony stable, Animax, on 5 July.

One feature of the predominantly English (at least in the initial phase) Japanese Anime channel that targets 4-25 year-olds is that, following the lead of AXN, Animax will have a two-hour long Hindi dubbed feed.

The feed will be for two hours in the evening. Speaking this afternoon to SET's ad sales and revenue management head Rohit Gupta said, "This will enable us to also reach the non Metro sectors. Having a 24-hour feed is something that we could look at as things progress. It is not going to be a channel only for the English speaking elite in the Metros. Our aim is to make it as mass as possible and touch as many viewers as we can.

"Animax is positioned for the young generation worldwide. Our target group is the 4-30 year old. While animation in India has been kids driven unless we show something different habits will not change. In India the brands most popular among the teens is Japanese Anime which is what our channel is all about. So we want to expand the market not only for the kids but also take it to the teen level.".

Therefore the advertisers that come onboard will also be targeting the teens. While no advertiser has been roped in One Alliance has been talking to major advertisers who are on MTV and Channel (V). Gupta further revealed that a brand ambassador had been roped in to give the channel a major marketing push. Details on this will be announced shortly. There will be outdoors, print etc. The ambassador will naturally be someone that the youth can closely relate with.

Asked why the push was coming in so late Gupta pointed out that the distribution scenario would have to be sorted out first. So the initial push will happen on the distribution front. Animax will have a separate feed for India. The FPC is being done differently compared to Japan where adult animation is popular. As far as content is concerned Gupta added that Astro Turf was a show that was being looked at as a driver. "While it does appeal mainly to a younger audience we have to start somewhere. Then we build up our efforts from there. Astro Turf is a known show."

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