CII organized the first of its kind CEOs Roundtable on Radio focusing on the next steps for growth of the radio industry in India on 21 December 2012. The roundtable saw the presence of the biggest names in the industry including Prashant Pandey, CEO, Radio Mirchi; Anurradha Prasad, President, AROI and CMD, B.A.G. Networks; Sunit Tandon, Director General, Indian Institute of Mass Communication, along with senior representation from the government.
Addressing industry leaders, Mr Uday Kumar Varma, Secretary, Ministry of Information & Broadcasting, made it clear that radio sector is top in the radar of I&B Ministry. The Government is committed to expansion of FM radio in far flung areas of the country and the transparent e-auction process of Phase III FM radio licensing is on track. The auction process for FM Phase III in radio is aimed at adding another 839 stations in over 290 towns and cities and is likely to commence by the end of the current financial year. Mr Varma asked radio industry to clearly specify incentives that would benefit the sector FM Phase III licensing.
A CII - Ernst & Young report on 'FM Radio in India: Poised for growth' was released by the Secretary on the occasion. Highlights of the report are as follows:
The sector is expected to generate revenue of around INR14 billion in 2012–13, with 245 private FM stations operating in 86 cities, and has been growing at a CAGR of 14% annually.
According to IRS 2012 Q2 data, radio has an estimated audience of 158 million people (out of which FM radio accounts for 106 million), as compared to 563 million in the TV segment and 352 million in the print sector.
Key challenges faced by the industry today include limited inventory, inability to demonstrate ROI and slow recovery of ad effective rates (ERs).
Internet radio is expected to grow, which could affect the value of FM radio licenses in the middle to long term.
The industry requires start up of several thousand stations, lowering high license fees and news dissemination to be equated with other media.
Phase III of FM radio licensing is most critical and necessitates the implementation of robust IT systems and technology in the cities to be a major growth driver and enabler.
Mr Amit Khanna, Chairman CII National Committee on Media & Entertainment and Chairman, Reliance Entertainment said the industry should work towards innovation and encourage more diversity of programmes in FM radio stations. He maintained that as we expand FM radio stations there is a dearth of trained professionals and human resource talent in this sector.
Mr Prashant Panday, CEO, Radio Mirchi said that global cities like Colombo and Dubai have more than 30 FM stations and major Indian cities have just seven or eight FM stations and thus, there is a need to grow channels. Ms Anurradha Prasad, President AROI and CMD, BAG Networks called for more liberal FM radio policy and steps to make the sector vibrant.
Innovation, FM radio as a powerful developmental communication tool, Internet radio dominated discussions at the CII CEOs Roundtable on Radio. Over 100 executives from FM radio stations across the country participated in the deliberations.
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Library of this event.