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Sadhna TV Group’s news channel re-enters Bihar market ahead of elections
MUMBAI: With assembly elections round the corner, Prabhatam Group-owned Sadhna TV Group has re-entered the Bihar market by expanding the coverage of its news channel Sadhna News Bihar/Jharkhand to the state.
Launched in December 2008, Sadhna News Bihar/Jharkhand was a dedicated news channel for Bihar and Jharkhand. However, the company later withdrew from Bihar and limited the scope of the channel to Jharkhand only.
The channel is looking to make hay as political parties are expected to splurge big money on advertising to reach out to the voters. The politically significant state will determine the future course of politics in the country.
ETV Bihar/Jharkhand, Sahara Samay Bihar/Jharkhand and Maurya TV (Zee Purvaiya) are the main players in the market.
Apart from Sadhna News Bihar/Jharkhand, the company also owns and operates four more channels, which include two news channels (Sadhna News Uttar Pradesh/Uttarakhand and Sadhna News Madhya Pradesh/Chhattisgarh) and two devotional channels (Sadhna Bhakti and Ishwar TV).
He added, “It’s an important election so all the parties are spending money. Besides political ads, we also see good opportunity in commercial advertising.”
He also said that the channel would be available on all cable TV platforms in Bihar and Jharkhand. The company hopes to cover 90-95 per cent of all cable TV households in the two states.
Talking about the challenges in getting distribution for the channel, he said, “It’s a fragmented market and analogue is still running, so it’s difficult to get in small towns.”
The news channel will have bureaus in Patna and Ranchi. S Mukherjee will continue to be the editor of the channel. The news channel will have a network of 50-60 reporters and stringers.
“We have already deployed our team and OB vans in Bihar so it will be a full-fledged channel for Bihar and Jharkhand,” he stated.
According to Gupta, the ad market in Bihar is not very big but it is growing due to increase in purchasing power of the people.
He also said that the channel would be viable. “In six months, we hope to get good numbers because of elections. We are experienced in running a news channel,” he stated.
The channel will be promoted primarily through outdoor hoardings.
The company had recently got a licence for a non-news channel named Positive Health. “We don’t have any plans to launch anything at this point,” Gupta said.