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Media: Inside out!
Jun 22, 2006

Lets start with the facts. There are more than 119 m televisions households, making India the third largest television viewership base market in the world (after the United States and China). Of these, about 50 m household were cable television households (i.e. have cable television in their homes), which represent a penetration rate of approximately 42%. This C&S penetration is about 25% of the total households in India. Given this backdrop, we analyse the growth prospects of the sector over the long term. The Indian television industry can be divided into two broad categories:

  • Terrestrial Broadcasting: Prasar Bharati is the only terrestrial broadcaster in India and is owned by the Government of India. It operates several channels under the umbrella brand “Doordarshan”. As a terrestrial broadcaster, ‘Doordarshan’ can be accessed by all television households. Being a government owned company, there are social obligations with respect to its reach and the programming content. Besides, without significant investments in technology and programming content, the state owned company continues to lose market share (both in terms of viewership base as well as the share of total advertisement revenues).

  • Cable and satellite broadcasting: C&S broadcasters uplink their channels to satellites that provide the downlink signals to a wide region, which in most cases covers several countries than India. With the recent introduction of Direct to home broadcasting, channels can be provided directly to the households. C&S broadcasting can be either free-to-air or subscription based. The chart below shows the largest channels in India by audience share for the FY06.


    Source: TAM

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