Saturday, August 30, 2008

NTV celebrates 1st anniversary

NTV and its Bhakti channel are Celebrating their 1st anniversary today. The festive mood can be observed on the screen, ofcourse, a low key affair compared to the 50 lakh budget inaugural meeting.
Insiders say that there are three reasons for lack of enthusiasm. Initially Mr. Chowdary thought of launching Vanita TV also on this day but could not make it.  NTV has failed to keep atleast its 3rd position and had to give way to its junior, TV5. The revenues are also less compared to TV5 while the expenditure is more.All these reasons collectively impacted the mind of Mr. Chowdary. Despite providing modern equipment and offering reasonably high salaries he was unable to move up in the Ratings and this annoyed him greatly.
The only consoling factor is that Bhakti channel is ahead of Sanskruti ( sponsored by TV9).
Leaving aside all these financial matters to Mr. Chowdary, let us all wish our journos in NTV a happy anniversary.

Friday, August 29, 2008

TV9 faced Mohan Babu's ire

TV9 led other channels in scrolling a flash item saying that Mr. Mohan Babu's elder son Mr.Vishnu Vardhan is going to marry YSR's younger brother's daughter who works in the U.S. The news also clarified that it is a love cum arranged marriage. Irritated with this news, Mr. Mohan babu came rushing to TV9 office along with his sons Vishnu and Manoj and daughter lakshmi Prasanna. As soon as he entered the office, he asked for Mr. Alapati Suresh Kumar, the Input Editor and Mr. Arun Sagar, the Output Editor and started using all the dirty words. He has even mentioned the incident of Chiru's daughter's marriage and told them that he is not Chiranjeevi to keep quiet. " Donga lan....llaaraa, maa sonta vishayaalu ceppadaaniki meerevarraa ? nenemanna chiranjeevinanukunnaaraa naanaa gabbu cheste oorukovataaniki ? champi jailukelata" . The staff including the Input editor and the Output editor were taken aback at the gate crashing model of Mr. Mohan Babu. At that time, the channel's CEO Mr. Ravi Prakash was not in office. However, the team leaders immediately informed him about the incident. Pat came a suggestion from Ravi Prakash " Dont play the half an hour story planned for 7.30 pm . He wont leave us if we proceed further". The earlier indication on the screen that a special story will be telecast at 7.30 was also immediately withdrawn.

Journalists in the poll fray !

TRS party's probable candidates are in T Channel ...err HMTV as per the information. KCR's latest statement that three more journalists are going to get tickets in the next elections made them happy. Mr. Ramalinga Reddy, who was with Vaarta earlier was given a ticket from Medak district and he won the seat against a senior TDP leader Mr. Mutyam Reddy twice. Similarly, the TRS chief is hopeful of winning if some seats are allocated to journalists. So he has decided to give tickets to three journalists and all of them are in HMTV. ( No comments whether it is a sheer coincidence or the birds of a feather flocked together). Mr.Narayan Reddy, Chief Reporter, Political Bureau and Mr. Virahat Ali, Asst Chief News Coordinator are aspirants of tickets from Medak district while the Input Editor/Chief News Coordinator of the channel Mr. Laxmaiah is an aspirant of MP ticket from Peddapalli.

Interestingly, Mr. Sailesh Reddy of Zee Telugu who tried for a ticket both from Congress and TDP during last elections may also try his luck this time.But the name of the Party is still unclear. Mr. Madduleti of Vaarta from Kurnool district tried Congree ticket to fight against Mr. B.V. Mohan Reddy last time. He is trying once again.Mr. Khuda Baksh of Andhra Prabha tried Kadiri (Anantapur dist) Congress ticket last time but missed. He is again on his efforts this time.

News is that there are three aspirants in Chiranjeevi's Praja Raajyam too. Mr. Satti Babu, a senior photo journalist from East Godavari has already entered the inner circle of the party. He is now incharge of the media at Chiru's office and has been overseeing the arrangements for the media. Mr. Parameswar Rao, a senior journalist from Srikakulam dist has also joined the party though his aspirations are not clearly spelled out. Mr. Kanna Babu and Mr. Narasimha Rao of Eenadu are already named by the so called inner circle as the probable candidates.APUWJ president Mr. Somasundaram is also trying for a ticket. However, he is in a dilemma whether to join the party directly or wait till Lok Satta ties up with Praja rajyam and contest on Lok Satta ticket.Though the name of Mr. Murthy (NTV)is also doing rounds in Media circles, his friends dismiss it as a mere rumour.

Earlier, Mr. K. Keshava Rao, a journalist became Minister, PCC Chief, and later Rajya Sabha member in Congress. Mr. Laxma Reddy, a close relative of Marri Channa Reddy and the founder of NSS ( a news agency ) contested from Hyderabad Loksabha Constituency unsuccessfully. From TDP side, Mr. Kalva Srinivasulu became MP and now one of the General Secretaries of the party after being defeated in 2004. While the owners of the media organisations are keen on Council and Rajya Sabha tickets, journos are interested in fighting the polls with their field experience.

Thursday, August 28, 2008

Sivaram Prasad for English News Channel

Mr. Sivaram Prasad of Studio N will be confined to the proposed English News Channel of the Narne group while Mr. Kommineni Srinivasa Rao is the likely candidate to head their Telugu  News Channel. Though they got  Licenses for Studio 1 ( Entertainment ) and Studio N ( News ), initially the work for the  English News Channel  is going on. They are yet to get a license for the Telugu Channel and once it is through, the work for Telugu News as well as Entertainment will take off. Mr. Kommineni was already contacted and he is waiting for the license to come. He is also very particular that the management spends huge amounts so that the channel is aired before elections.

Influence of REACH on Ratings

 The availability of a TV channel influences its Ratings according to the TAM Data. The cooperation of the MSOs and Cable Operators makes all the difference. The figures for the month of June 16 to July 15  show  this trend. The figures indicate the percentage of  houses with cable connection in the country which have the facility to watch the particular channel on their TV.
The national level data show that TV5 reaches 6.86% of houses while TV9 reaches 9.46%, ETV2  8.64%, NTV 6.95 % and Gemini News 5.35%. The Ratings are in the order of TV9, ETV2, TV5, NTV and Gemini News. Here, the reach of NTV is more than TV5 but the ratings are slightly lower. This is a plus point for TV5. There is scope for enhancing its reach.
When we see the reach in Hyderabad City alone, TV9 reaches 82.29% of houses with Cable connection while ETV2 is available to 79.05%, NTV 62,41%. TV5 63.27% and Gemini News to 35.13%. The ratings of TV5 in Hyderabad city are far better than NTV and the reach is also one of the factors.
Hence the role of the MSO/Cable Operator has become very much important. First, he has to give the channel thus keeping it available for browsing. Then only the there will be a possibility of watching it. It is then the burden of the channel to keep him attracted to the channel. That is why the MSOs are demanding huge sums of Carriage Fees.

Monday, August 25, 2008

HMTV Studio inauguration on 27th

HMTV, earlier known as ttv has completed civil and electrical work of its studio at A.S.Rao Nagar near ECIL and will be inaugurating the same on 27th. To see that the staff do not feel dissatisfied with the slow pace of work, the management has decided to infuse confidence among them and arranged this ' Gruhapravesham ' event on a large scale.The equipment procured so far will be installed and is likely to be completed in a month after which there will be trial runs throughout October.
Though the launch date was announced as 9th October,  it may slightly get delayed according to the insiders. If the management is very particular, the soft launch ( test signals ) will be on 9th October, Vijaya Dashami day and the final launch by the end of October or 1st November.  Movement of vehicles and cameras is very minimal at this stage and they are scarcely seen outside indicating that the preliminary work didnot gain momentum so far. More than 30 reporting staff have been inducted and they are kept busy browsing the internet in search of special stories. The stories ' on paper ' will be shot once cameras and vehicles are available.

Yama Donga loots Ratings for Maa

The latest ratings of the Telugu channels are really interesting. Maa TV could get 2nd place with 12 percent of market share, next only to Gemini TV. This is made possible with the help of  the blockbuster movie " Yama Donga " . However, this is the last " astram " of Maa TV. One more interesting result is that Zee Telugu could surpass the ratings of ETV. The variety programmes including its reality shows brought considerable ratings for Zee. Infact, the staff at Zee have even celebrated this achievement in a big way. This is for the first time ETV dropped to 4th place. Gemini, Maa, Teja, Zee Telugu and ETV are in the descending order of their market shares. Among  the News Channels, TV9 continues to be the leader while ETV2 remains in a distant second place. TV5 protected its 3rd place for the 5th consecutive week challenging its arch rival NTV.

Sunday, August 24, 2008

Anniversaries or Instalment nightmares ?

NTV and its devotional channel Bhakti are going to celebrate the completion of one year on 30th of this month. Mr. Chowdary is now ready with his third channel Vanitha. For want of auspicious days, the launch of vanitha is slated for 9th September. The anniversary celebrations of the existing channels will also take place on 9th. But this is not a cheerful moment for Mr. Chowdary since he has to pay huge amount towards Carriage fees to the cable operators. Apart from paying for Vanitha, he has to pay another instalment of around 4 crores for the earlier channels also. The amount he paid last year was meant only for one year and the operators are demanding fresh payment.
 Last year Mr. Chowdary estimated that his channel would be popular among the audience in one year and that the people would demand their operators to show NTV. Basing on this assumption,  he thought that he would not be required to request the operators. But the things are entirely different. The channel dropped from 3rd to 4th position among the 5 News Channels. Under these circumstances, Mr. Chowdary is forced to urge the operators to show his channel. He is now prepared to forego an amount of 7 crores for NTV, Bhakti and Vanitha this year.... The anniversary gift to the Cable operators.
The situation at TV5 is no different. Though Mr. Naidu is happy with the performance of the channel scaling to 3 rd position surpassing its nearest rival NTV, he is under pressure from the operators as he is also completing 1 year on 2nd October. With about 5 more news channels coming up and are ready to pay carriage fees, the operators are asking for an additional amount this year. They are even threatening to stop the channel and allocate the space to the new channels willing to pay huge carriage fees. Its no wonder if the cable Operators openly call for an auction and see that they carriage fees of more than 5 crores in the near future.
It is also learnt that the operators are unhappy with TV5 for its inclusion in Tata Sky which is against the interests of the cable operators. Though TV5 boasts itself for finding place in DTH, which its rival NTV is deprived of, it has become a negative point from the operators point of view.

What do Maa Directors get ?

As already informed, Sony is going to take over Maa and the due deligence ( physical verification and evaluation of assets and liabilities ) has already started. A formula for finding out Goodwill apart from valuation of Movies on hand is also arrived at.
Now the point is, how much do the Directors get ? Maa TV was valued at Rs.100 crores when new partners came in during 2006. Mr. Akkineni Nagarjuna Rao ( Nagarjuna ) and his brother-in-law Mr. Chalasani Ramesh were together given 20 percent share. However, share of 10 Rs was offered to them only @ Rs. 7 as a special price.Hence the duo were able to get 20 percent stake in Maa just for 14 crores. Later Mr.Chiranjeevi and Mr. Aravind also together took 20 percent but the price was at par, ie, 20 crores. Then entered Mr.Nimmagadda Prasad alias Matrix Prasad. He took 20 percent on paying Rs 20 crores. He offered 2 percent to his Finance Director Mr. C. Rama Krishna. This is what happened when the new partners came in. After this, the share of Mr. MuraliKrishnam Raju is reduced to 30 percent. However, he continued to be the one with the highest share and thus the post of Chairman. Some of the early promoters and investers were reduced to nominal shareholders and all of them put together constitute the remaining 10 percent.
Now the company is being valued at Rs. 400 crores. Hence Mr. Nagarjuna and his brother-in law's share will be valued at 80 crores and hereafter they will hold 10 percent in the company. So, Mr.Nag will be getting Rs 40 crores back and yet continue to be a 10 percent stakeholder ( 40 crores ) in Maa.In less than 2 years of his investment to the tune of just 14 crores. Similarly, Chiranjeevi and Aravind will get back 40 crores and still hold Rs 40 crores in Maa for their 20 crore investment. Same is the case with Matrix Prasad.
Murali Krishnam raju, the man who got name and fame with maa TV also got huge anmount of money at two stages.He has invested around 30 crores by the time of the Cinema gang's entry and got it valued at 100 crores. He took away the 60 crores brought in by the new comers and still hold his 30 crore share in the company.Now he gets Rs 120 crores and still have 15 percent stake ( 60 crores ) in the company.However, the saddest part of it is that he ceases to be the Chairman of Maa TV.