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Print News from Round the World

22 February 2017

In this regular feature, we bring you the news of the industry as they appear in mainstream publications. The week, we cover ad spend projections, ad spend in print, a murder follow up, the future of print and digital in publishing and how curb on posters hit Odisha printers.

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Broadcasters confident about 13% ad spend growth

Last year, demonetisation stopped ad spend ahead of Rs 50,000 crore mark and knocked off Rs 1,650 crore from the same, according to the recently unveiled Pitch Madison Advertising Report 2017. However, despite this, the growth in ad spend at 12.5% was close to its mid-year projection of 13.2%.

Since ad spend fell in November-December 2016 by 8%, it predicted that the growth rate in November-December 2017 over corresponding months in the previous year to be a ‘dramatically high by 24%.’ “The aggregation of these growth rates during these three periods help us arrive at our annual growth forecast of 13.5%, making ad spend cross the Rs 56,000 crore mark. This should make India once again the fastest growing advertising market in the world for the third consecutive year,” said the report.

TV will continue as the largest contributor to the overall advertising pie with a share of 38%. Last year as well, it dominated the advertising pie, growing by Rs 1,570 crore, a 9% growth, despite losing an estimated Rs 850 crore on account of demonetisation. The main categories that have fuelled the overall growth of Rs 1,570 crore in 2016 are FMCG (Rs 692 crore) and telecom (Rs 475 crore). The report is expecting 2017 to favour Adex and bring in a double-digit growth of 13 per cent on the back of new channel launches from existing networks (‘that will increase inventory supply to absorb this growth’) and aggressive growth of FMCG players and help it achieve Rs 21,300 crore. Patanjali Ayurved’s aggression in advertising spends will definitely play a big role as will the launch of Ayurveda lines by other FMCG giants.

Rohit Gupta, president, network sales and international business, Sony Pictures Networks India, said, “The number should grow anywhere between 13 and 15%. As per BARC, the universe is growing up to 183 million households. TV is the highest reach builder for any brand. So it will continue to do well.”

However, he didn’t quite agree to the number assigned for 2016 (9%), “The growth for 2016 should have been double digit because only in November and December business took a hit. Until then, everyone had a great year. So I don’t subscribe to that 9%.”

Manav Dhanda, group CEO, SAB Group, said, “All eCommerce portals and technology platforms, the top media spenders, had reduced their spend on media as compared to the previous year. Despite that, there was a reasonable growth at a macro level. However, the sudden demonetisation impact certainly had a lasting effect through the year as well. There is far too much speculation on when the demonetisation impact would wean off, but for now it could be as good as playing a hand of cards and is anybody’s guess on when we’ll see the growth in ad spend in equivalence to what industry was trending prior.”

Pawan Jailkhani, chief revenue officer, 9X Media, is, however, skeptical about the number. “Increase in Adex/inventory does not necessarily mean that value would go up. Because of demonetisation, lots of clients have asked for free/discounted inventory in the last three-four months. To add to that, the situation also became grim when few other broadcasters discounted rates further to get larger volumes during this period. We have seen increase in TV penetration and viewership in the last one year, but the real value is still not derived for the TV sector and is still undervalued. So I suspect that as a medium we will grow at 13% in value. However, it’s a wait-and-watch situation for the next two quarters,” he said. (exchange4media.com)

Print ad spend growing in India: Report

While ad spend trends the word over are firmly settled on digital, India is still happily clinging to the old ways, print. According to the latest GroupM report, India is the only market in the world where ad spend in print media is growing. India is also one of the largest markets in the world in terms of ad spend.

According to the global media management investment conglomerate Group M’s biannual advertising expenditure futures report ‘This Year Next Year’ (TYNY) 2017, released on 14 February, ad spend in print media grew by 4% year-on-year in 2016. It is pegged to grow by 4.5% in 2017 — from Rs 17,472 crore in 2016 to Rs 18,258 crore in 2017.

The report suggested that ad spend in print media declined in key growth markets like Russia, China, the UK, the US, Brazil and Germany.

The report said the growth in ad spend in print media, which is also the second largest medium for advertising after television, in India will come from sectors like auto, BFSI  and eWallets. Regional language newspapers will see a higher growth rate than their English counterparts.

The total advertising investment, across media, in India is projected to grow by 10% to reach Rs 61,204 crore in 2017 from Rs 55,671 crore in 2016.

Meanwhile, global ad spend is expected to grow by 4.4% and spending in Asia-Pacific will grow by 6.3%.

This makes India one of the fastest growing ad markets globally.

Meanwhile, overall ad spend 2016 took a hit owing to lower-than-expected ad spend growth from sectors like FMCG, traditional retail, telecom and irregular spending in categories like ecommerce. Additionally, demonetisation in the last quarter had a negative impact of about 2% on the total expenditure in 2016. (Forbes India)

Man arrested for murder of Hyderabad press owner

The Hussaini Alam police in Hyderabad have arrested a man accused of being involved in the gruesome murder of a printing press owner last October. Shujathullah Shareef, younger brother of the main accused Mujeebullah Shareef, was picked up by a police special team from Shapur area in Ranga Reddy district.

On 3 October 2016, high court lawyer Mujeeb Ullah Shareef and his associates allegedly hacked Mirza Khaleel Baig, a resident of Hussaini Alam, to death. The five armed assailants intercepted Baig’s Maruti Omni near his house. They dragged him out of the vehicle and stabbed him. Baig’s son, Mirza Jaffar Baig, saw the murder and is an eye-witness in the case. (The Times of India)

Digital and print will go hand in hand in publishing

Writing a guest column in Business Insider India, literary agent Kanishka Gupta made a case for the printed book. “Year after year, the printed book has continued to withstand the digital onslaught, and remains the most favoured format for readers. Last year, print books in India grew by 15% and the contribution of digital books to total sales amounted to a miniscule 5-10%,” he said.

In spite of this, however, new entrants to publishing like Juggernaut and more recently the Pune-based, mobile-only publisher Readify, are pushing boundaries and experimenting with content and format. “In just eight months since its launch, the Juggernaut mobile app has seen more than 560,000 users and 180,000 books downloads. Of all the digital books, 30 titles have been downloaded more than 1000 times,” he added.

Gupta said the consumption of books on the app shows interesting trends – for instance, short crime and horror sell more on digital than in print, especially if they are by Indian authors. App-based publishers are also discouraging lengthy tomes and a lot of the commissioning is done strictly keeping the word count in mind. Technology also addresses the rampant issue of piracy faced by print books. Both Readify and Juggernaut have built in several security features, including encryption of all content, so that piracy becomes extremely difficult.

Yet, print remains the mainstay. “Almost everyone I spoke to agreed that print will remain untouched by these new digital platforms although the latter will be instrumental in drawing younger, traditionally book-averse people to reading,” Gupta said. (Business Insider India)

Curb on posters hits printing trade in Odisha

Restriction on putting up posters, banners and hoardings at public places has brought the business of the printing presses in Odisha to a standstill. As per the direction of the State Election Commission, the display of posters, hoardings and banners on the walls of government buildings, educational and religious institutions and at public roads is prohibited as a part of the election code of conduct.

“I’ve not received even a single order for the past few weeks,” said Ranjan Dash, a printing press owner. He prints posters for political events, weddings and other family functions. 

Candidates fighting for different posts in the three-tier panchayat poll use different types of symbols. The printing press owners and traders in rural areas had accumulated huge stocks of materials for making posters. But the restriction imposed by the SEC and the district administration has affected their business. Alok Sahu, a trader, said, “There is no way to make money out of this business anymore. While in the last panchayat polls, the candidates had ordered around 10,000 posters, this year it has come down to only 1,000 banners.” (The New Indian Express)

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