Submitted by admin on Tue, 05/02/2017 - 12:41

With Nickelodeon being the Number 1 kids channel for over two years now, Nina Elavia Jaipuria, Head - Kids Entertainment, Viacom18 bets big on Gattu Battu as the next blockbuster local franchise


By Simran Sabherwal


With a market-share of 19%, Nickelodeon, the kids channel from the Viacom18 stable, has been the undisputed No. 1 channel from August 2014 in the Rs 500 crore kids category and as a network, the Nickelodeon franchise – including channels Sonic, Nick Jr and Nick HD – commands a market-share of 31%, just behind Disney (market-share of 33%) but ahead of Turner (market-share of 27%) (Source: BARC, Relative Share in %, All India U+R, 2-14 NCCS ABC, Week 08-12 ‘2017 (0700 -2200hrs). Nickelodeon also claims that the average time spent on the channel is over 90 minutes per day and Nina Elavia Jaipuria, Head – Kids Entertainment, Viacom18 says, “Advertisers look for reach and we are the highest delivering reach channel in this space, and reach 32 million kids as a channel every week.”

Looking at the year gone by for the franchise, Elavia Jaipuria says, “For the fourth year in a row, we are a profitable franchise for Viacom18. Ad sales have grown by 20% over the previous year and this has been through rate increases which we as an under-indexed category deserve.” She also adds that subscription revenues have been growing by 10-15%. Merchandising is another stream that has grown by 40% YoY with products now in 46 categories and around 6,000 SKUs. We see it as an ancillary revenue stream over and above ad sales and subscription adding to our top-line. It is still in single digit but we see it growing big time,” she adds.



In 2016, all efforts went into ensuring that Sonic became a strong second channel for the franchise. As part of this strategy, the popular show Shiva was moved from Nickelodeon to Sonic within six months of launch. This paid off, as Elavia Jaipuria says, “We literally dragged all eyeballs from Nickelodeon onto Sonic and with this the market-share of Sonic moved from 4% to 10%.” While acknowledging Shiva as “the winner of 2016”, Elavia Jaipuria adds that the shows Pakdam Pakdai and Oggy      and the Cockroaches have also contributed in increasing the reach and ratings of Sonic. Sonic has made it to the consideration of a lot of advertisers. In fact, some metro-focussed advertisers like Heinz and Kellogg only consume Sonic and do not consume Nick,” she says.



After tasting success with its local shows - Motu Patlu, Pakdam Pakdai and Shiva - Nicklodeon is now ready with its fourth local franchise, Gattu Battu, an investigative animation show which airs from May 1. As per Elavia Jaipuria, “We have an appetite for risk and since 2012, have taken risks with shows that weren’t attempted in India. Motu Patlu had no kid protoganist, Pakdam Pakdai was the first Indian chase, Shiva the first action comedy and now we have come up with another genre which hasn’t been tapped at all.” She continues, “We have looked at the need gaps. With Gattu Battu, we have found another wide space that hasn’t been tapped into earlier.”



A big “innovation” last year was taking the Lotpot characters Motu Patlu from the small screen to the big screen with the release of Motu Patlu King of Kings – the network’s maiden 3D stereoscopic animation theatrical. Commenting on the movie and the association with Viacom18 Motion Pictures, Elavia Jaipuria says, “It was a movie that made money for us and the studio is happy to do more.”

Making a comeback in 2016 was The Kid's Choice Awards (KCA), which was an effort to defy the notion that non-FCT pieces and impact properties don’t work in the kids category, and Elavia Jaipuria says that KCA will be bigger when it returns this year.



Providing value to advertisers beyond the 30-second FPC has the franchise increasing its focus on providing solutions to brands beyond the pure vanilla FCT such as product licensing and non-FCT integrations. Elavia Jaipuria says these initiatives have been clutter breaking and worked for all stakeholders. She adds that 50% of the advertisers are non-kid advertisers and include brands from the automobile, banks, finance, consumer durables, luggage and e-commerce space.



Looking ahead, a big focus area is to increase the market-share of both Sonic and the Nicklodeon network. Elavia Jaipuria says, “Our biggest challenge for 2017 is to ensure that we maintain and sustain the No 1 position as well as grow Sonic.” Plans are also foot for a fifth local franchise. Meanwhile, the network will continue to increase its dependence on local content and filling up need gaps.



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