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Bindass to ‘Play’ on youth demand

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MUMBAI: “We want to build on our strengths,” is what Disney India MD Siddharth Roy Kapur believes in and is the reason for the soon-to-launch music channel, Bindass Play, from the network.

Disney India will replace UTV Stars with the new channel which will go on air from 1 October as it wants to build on the youth-targetted brand. “Currently, Bindass is at a very good place and the viewers are aware of our values. Hence, we want to expand on it with the new music channel,” says Kapur.

Early this early Bindass had launched a new brand film – ‘B for Change – to reflect the sentiments of today’s youth who want to explore but at the same time don’t hesitate in going forward to bring about a change.

“Bindass has always spoken the language of youth and it is the only homegrown youth entertainment channel in the genre to have won the loyalty of youngsters in the country. Music is very close to this section of the audience,” says Media Networks content and communication VP and head Vijay Subramaniam.

He adds, “Hence, the unique thing about the channel would be that it will be inspirational and will celebrate the journey of adulthood as a friend and empower the youth.”

But does this mean, Bindass will now only focus on storytelling? ‘No’, comes the response from Subramaniam. The youth entertainment channel will continue to showcase music but only for five hours (7 am to 12 pm) and on relationship based programmes rather than the edgy content like Dadagiri it focused on, earlier.

The latest entrant in the Rs 900 crore business caters to the age group of 14-34 with the tagline ‘Saath hai toh baat hai’. The 13 shows are mood mapped with high energy song in the morning to slow tempo in the night, and with many of them like Tia’s Request, Tweet Meri Beat, Ishq Messenger among others allowing the viewer to choose his/her playlist through social media.

Digital medium plays an important role for the brand and hence, it has tried to capture the youth through it. “As and when newer opportunities come from the medium we will try to engage with them as well,” says Subramaniam.

The network is already in talks with four major brands for the channel. “Advertisers are happy and will want to associate with the channel as it is extension of the brand Bindass,” says Media Networks revenue vice president and head Nikhil Gandhi and will sell the ad slots at “healthy” rates.

However, media planners consider it as ‘just another channel in the genre’ as there are too many players in the genre. “Rs 500 for a 10 second ad should be the rate for the channel,” says a media planner.

UTV Stars was launched in 2011 and showcased popular Bollywood content including music and feature-based programming and since it was not able to catch viewers’ attention, the network now is playing safe by launching a channel focusing on the music genre, point outs another media analyst.

Nonetheless, the channel is very upbeat about its new offering and believes that it will be able to strengthen its position in the category.  An in house team worked on the look for the channel and Subramaniam believes that it will be the ‘sexiest looking channel’ on television.

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