New socio-economic classification system developed

The Media Research Users' Council (MRUC) alongwith the Market Research Society of India (MRSI) has rolled out the new socio-economic classification (SEC) system, under which all Indian households will be classified.

The new grading system comes in force five years after the process was initiated by the MRUC and MRSI to give more relevance to the system.

Lloyd Mathias, chairman, MRUC and president, corporate monitoring, Tata Teleservices, said, ''In 2006, extensive research and inputs from industry experts had thrown up a burning need to revisit the classification system, given that the market environment, as also consumer profiles, preferences and attitudes had undergone a sea-change over the last three decades.''

The new system will classify Indian households by using two parameters -- educational qualifications of the chief wage owner in the household, and the number of assets owned (out of a pre-specified list of 11 assets).

Based on these two parameters, each household will be classified in one of 12 SEC groups -- A1, A2, A3, B1, B2, C1, C2, D1, D2, E1, E2 and E3, which will be applicable to both urban and rural India.

''The new system will now play up rural as aggressively as urban and not in silos as done earlier,'' Mathias added.