Television

CNBC Bajar aims to expand business news viewership

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MUMBAI: Giving Gujaratis of the world a taste of their own mother tongue in the trade that is most attributed to them is TV18’s new Gujarati business news channel CNBC Bajar. 

CNBC channels and Forbes India CEO Anil Uniyal said, “On every economic parameter, from industrialisation to GDP per household, Gujaratis are top performers today. However, there isn’t enough content being created to serve this hugely affluent set of viewers. It was thus a very simple decision for us when we decided to start this channel. Not only that, no other community devours content revolving around finance, markets, business and economics the way this community does.”

Speaking on the launch, Prime Minister Narendra Modi said, “You have understood the mindset and lifeline of Gujarat and I believe this Gujarati channel will get you the highest profit, as compared to all other channels of your network.”

Launched on 1 July, CNBC Bajar is the third business news channel apart from the existing CNBC TV-18 and CNBC Awaaz with the tagline ‘Business Ni Matrubhasha,’ which means ‘the mother tongue of business’.

CNBC Awaaz and Bajar marketing senior manager Kunj Sanghvi says that approximately Rs 4 crore has been pumped into a month-long promotion campaign.

The Bajar marketing campaign also launched on first is created by O&M with the theme ‘the mother tongue of business’. It will be visible on TV, print, outdoor, online, mobile, on ground and railway stations. For print, Bajar Mint, Sandesh, Gujarat Samachar and Forbes have been targeted. Network18 channels including Colors, MTV, CNBC channels, IBN channels, ETV Gujarati, ETV Rajasthan, ETV MP, History, MTV Indies, Comedy Central and VH1 will air Bajar TVCs.

The channel says that more than 120 outdoor spots have been booked across Gujarat while 30 sites have been taken in Mumbai, this being handled by media agency Madison. Big FM is the radio channel that is being used in Surat, Baroda and Rajkot.

CNBC Awaaz editor in chief Sanjay Pugalia will also hold the same position in Bajar. Pradeep Pandya and Aashka Goradia will represent the channel as its prime anchors. Though the new channel will offer news related to NSE, BSE, currency, retail, local Gujarat business, tax, real estate and entrepreneurship, Bajar will focus and expand the commodity news sector. Specific advice will be given on trading, stock market, investor education and personal finance. Other programming inclusions on Bajar are lifestyle, food, fashion and entertainment, CNBC Awaaz doesn’t focus too much on some of these Gujarati tastes. 

The Bajar team consists of 40 journalists and production professionals. Headquartered in Mumbai, it has bureaus in Ahmedabad, Vadodara, Surat and Rajkot. A new studio has been created in the main office with SD quality cameras. “We want to show with CNBC Bajar that a language product can also be as sophisticated as international channels. Regional journalism has been mediocre in the country but we want to establish that we can create good quality standards,” avers Pugalia.

However, Pugalia does not feel that this will take away viewership from its Hindi business news channel but will rather expand the genre. “When we launched Awaaz, many people said it will cannibalise the main channel but we proved them wrong. The genre actually expanded. Bajar will create a new viewership for itself in the Gujaratis of the world specially those who don’t consume business news itself,” he points out.

An ecstatic Pugalia informs that CNBC Bajar is not a regional channel but a Gujarati channel. “This is a channel for Gujaratis not just in India but all over the world. Bajar is actually an extension of Awaaz but the channel is an independent one,” he adds.

The channel has a one year long partnership with infibeam.com, an online shopping portal based out of Ahmedabad. Infibeam will get channel association wherever CNBC Bajar is named but the channel says that it will not get any editorial advantage because of its association. Advertisers include Infibeam, Adani, Ganesh Housing and Tradebull.

Now that the channel has been launched officially, it will scout for more advertisers. As per sources, approximately Rs 10 crore to Rs 12 crore has been invested in the channel and the aim is to break even within one year.

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