Sony Six banks on FIFA finale to reach viewership target

MUMBAI: This Sunday, 13 July, the biggest sporting event FIFA 2014 World Cup will crown its ultimate champions: Germany or Argentina. Sony Six, which bet big on FIFA to churn out viewership claims that the game has garnered them good TVTs.

The World Cup has also been a money spinner in terms of ad rates for the games. It can be noted that for the initial matches the ad rate for a ten second slot was selling for Rs 2 lakh to Rs 2.5 lakh. But now the figure has doubled. "The ad rates for a 10 second slot for the last four matches were sold for Rs 5 lakh ," says MSM president Rohit Gupta. But according to some media planners the sum quoted is too high and marketers would end up paying between Rs 3.5 lakh to Rs 4 lakh.

Sony Six business head Prasana Krishnan says, “The football story in India has been pretty good for our channel. It has been a driver for growth in terms of viewership. The singular prime time slot of telecasting games at 9:30 pm has paid well.”

For the audiences in CS male 15+ years category, Sony Six had 605 TVTs, Sony Aath had 209 TVTs, Sony Pix had 85 TVTs and combined the three channels had a combined total of 899 TVTs. For the West Bengal market, (CS male 15+ years) Six had 218 TVTs, Aath had 203 TVTs, Pix had 27 TVTs and the combined TVTs were 448. According to the channel, its TG mostly lies in the CS 15+ category.

In terms of reach (in 000s), for CS 4+ years at an all India level, Six had a reach of 43,968; Aath 9,816; Pix 5,350 and combined reach of 50,184. Though Krishnan had expected Six's reach to be 125 million during this FIFA World Cup, he is yet optimistic about the final. "The World Cup is not yet over, we expect the total number to increase," he says. Giving viewers a local flavor through Bengali commentary on Aath and the resultant viewership numbers is validation of their strategy being a success, Krishnan added.

According to TAM data sourced from the channel for week 16 to week 26 (13 April to 5 July 2014) Six has been placed number one for 11 weeks now. Krishnan adds “It is a pointer for the future. In the next five years many international titles like UEFA Euro 2016 and FIFA World Cup 2018 will help our channel immensely. The time zone for FIFA will be more favorable this time for our telecast to the Indian audiences as FIFA will be held in Russia.”

The male and female ratio in terms of viewership for this FIFA World cup has been 67 per cent and 33 per cent respectively. Compared to the FIFA World Cup 2010, female viewership has grown.

When questioned which has been the best performing market for Sony Six so far Krishnan says, "No prizes for guessing. It has been West Bengal followed by Kerala, Mumbai, Chennai and Assam."

But what is Six’s strategy once FIFA ends? “We have a few properties lined up already. The Caribbean Premier League took off on 11 July and later in the year we will be focusing on World Kabaddi League and Champions Tennis League while NBA JAM is set to hit the ground in September 2014,” Krishnan says proudly.

It seems like the channel is all set for the year. Meanwhile, it’s time to relax and enjoy the finale of FIFA World Cup 2014.

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