ET Now edges past UTVi in launch week

MUMBAI: ET Now has overtaken UTVi to land in the third spot among the English business news channels, posing a potential threat to its competitors right from the launch week.

The channel, with The Economic Times advantage on television, has edged out UTVi both in the All-India market as well as the metros.

While UTVi's channel share has dipped from 6 per cent to 4 per cent (All-India) for the week ended 27 June, ET Now has actually doubled its market share to attain the third rank.

ET Now opened with a three per cent market share pan India and doubled this to six per cent for the week ended 27 May.

In the metros too, the channel doubled its slice from 4 per cent in the previous week to 8 per cent. UTVi's channel share, in comparison, fell from 9 per cent to six per cent during the same period.

So does UTVi foresee a severe damage to its ratings?

Says UTVi COO Sumit Gupta, "Ratings are a function of both reach and time spent and the only gains that ET has witnessed have come from a reach upside. Time spent per viewer on the other hand is a far more dependable measure for smaller segments."

Meanwhile, it seems that the new entrant has also eaten into some share of NDTV Profit which has fallen to 20 per cent across India as against the 25 per cent that it held in the previous week. In the metros too, the channel has seen a dip from 26 per cent to 20 per cent.

So how does ET Now predict this upward movement?

Avers Times Global Broadcasting CEO Chintamani Rao, "These are early days for the channel as it is just one week old. I expect to get ourselves in place right now."

Interestingly, the period has seen CNBC TV18, the incumbent market leader in the space, take a jump from 66 to 70 per cent in the All-India market. The channel also climbed the ladder to capture 67 per cent of the market (61 per cent last week) in the metros.

What may be encouraging is that the entry of ET Now is showing signs of expanding the English business news genre market pie.

According to the latest Tam data (C&S 25+), the genre has seen an upward move in its All-India viewership with a 0.23 per cent market share for the week ended 27 June. The genre had commanded a 0.22 per cent share the previous week.

In the metros too, the genre share has grown to 0.28 per cent, from 0.27 in the prior week. It is impertinent to note here that the genre had marked a 0.26 per cent share in week 24.

So what kind of impact does the genre expect with the entry of a new player?

Says Gupta, "The impact will largely be in terms of a wider choice for the viewer and the advertiser and also an additional buzz that will be created for the segment. All these factors bring in a renewed interest in the older players too. On the ratings side, for a genre that contributes to less than 1 per cent share of viewership, the shift is not expected to be tangible."

"The real impact of a new player will be gauged in terms of the differentiated programming that the entrant puts together. Path breaking ideas and new formats will be monitored closely by the industry than anything else," Gupta adds.

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