Value 4 Media ventures into VCD-DVD advertising

MUMBAI: We've heard of advertising in between programmes on television. Now fathom this... advertisements in VCDs and DVDs, and legally at that.

It was two months ago that Bhupen Chhadva and Mangesh Bhute started their company Value 4 Media which provided blue chip companies with an opportunity to advertise on VCDs and DVDs. Theirs is the first company to ever indulge in this unique concept.



Akai and Airtel branding (top right and left hand corner) on the "Main Hoon Na" VCD

They started with Shahrukh Khan's movie Main Hoon NA, which was released earlier this year. For this particular movie, Value 4 Media bagged clients like Akai and Airtel as sponsors. Says Chhadva, "This is a new clutter free media and more and more clients are looking at being associated with it. When you watch a movie on a television channel the ad breaks are usually 10 to 15 minutes long and hence you tend to surf channels. But on our VCD and DVDs the total duration of ads is about five to seven and a half minutes and hence each ad is about 30 - 40 seconds long. This keeps the viewer from fast forwarding."

Eros Entertainment holds the rights to Main Hoon NA and they have given the advertising rights to Value 4 Media. "We collect advertising on their behalf and this VCD, priced at Rs 199, is sold to individuals, video libraries and cable operators. People in small towns are not really interested in buying it at that price and hence they get copies made from the video libraries for only about Rs 30 or Rs 40," explains Chhadva. This piracy of sorts works out in their favour as their clients get more mileage. So if the number of original VCDs-DVDs that they make are about 200,000 - 250,000; the duplication is tenfold!

"This, in a way, is an important aspect because the advertiser gets the maximum benefit as it reaches across India on the cable network to 46 million homes without shelling out additional money on the media," says Chhadva.


This media is rapidly growing as there has been a steady increase in the number of VCD and DVD players in the country. "The data we have shows that there are more than 20 million VCD players and almost 800,000 – 900,000 DVD players in circulation," says Chhadva. Corporate biggies like Akai, Bajaj, Airtel, Samsung, Heinz, Godrej, Amul, Zingaro, Videocon, LG, Hindustan Lever Limited (HLL) are using this medium to reach a large number of consumers today.

Value 4 Media has the rights to some big upcoming Hindi movie titles like Swades, Dus and Ab Tumhare Hawwale Watan Saathiyon to name a few. It goes without saying that many corporates across India would be interested in being associated with these names. Currently monopolising this market, Value 4 Media is not afraid of competition in the small players who are trying to do the same. "The list of movies that we have is big and hence we are not afraid of competition," says a confident Chhadva. "We are only looking at catering to good clients who are ready to pay and want to explore this medium," he adds.


What has worked in Value 4 Media's favour is that Chhadva has a one-to-one relationship with all the films' right holders and that was also one of the primary reasons why he ventured into this business. Times, Bombino, Venus, Indus, Eros, T-Series are the various rights holders and Value 4 Media shares a good rapport with all of them. They acquired the advertising rights to Swades from T-Series.

Bajaj Discover, Airtel and Akai branding on "Around the World in 80 Days"

"Clients like Airtel have already associated with us for three movies and are keen on more. Multinational companies (MNC) like HLL, Godrej, P&G are also looking at this media as it is very cost effective," says Chhadva. Apart from having ads in the movie break on the VCDs and DVDs, their branding is also placed on the covers of the same as well as on the discs. Credit lines are also provided for the clients at the beginning of the movie. For Jackie Chan's latest laugh riot, Around the World in 80 Days, Bajaj Discover was brought on board as the main sponsor as Chan has recently endorsed the bike. Apart from that, Airtel and Akai have also associated with the movie.

This apart, Value 4 Media also has an interactive musical quiz show on all cable networks in Mumbai called Enjoy. The participation level, informs Chhadva, is more than 5,000 phone calls a day. This 50 minute show is telecast four times daily before the Hindi movie begins on the cable channel. "The ratings this show gets is almost in line with the ratings of the top Star Plus shows," says he. Each song played on Enjoy is sponsored by clients like Videocon, Toshiba, Akai, Airtel, Bajaj, Killer Jeans, Sagem Mobile and Camlin. This is a monetarily cheap way to reach the 2.8 million houses in Mumbai and hence advertisers have started looking at this medium. Chhadva has also produced shows like Aim Ka Contest and Filmi Khazana for seven years for local cable. These shows are incentive based wherein viewers get prizes like DVD - VCD players, walkmans, exercising machines, etc, hence viewership is more.

The third area that Value 4 Media is active in is VCD and DVD bundling, which is quantity buying of DVD and VCD software. For example: If a contest at Shopper's Stop requires giving away scratch and win cards wherein customers win VCDs and DVDs, then they can buy the Rs 199 VCDs or DVDs from Value 4 Media in bulk for as cheap a rate as Rs 50. And in case the quantity is very high, then they can even get it for as low a price as Rs 35. "We are providing these to Akai, Jaipan and Videocon as they give free VCDs and DVDs to customers on purchase of their products. Malls like Globus and Shoppers Stop also buy from us in bulk," says Chhadva.

With DVD rights for almost 1,800 movies and VCD rights for 3,000, this two month "young" company is all geared up to dive headlong into the broadband and digital format ad films in the near future. "As the market grows, we will grow," says an ambitious Chhadva.

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