Marketing review news
16 December 2004

Wrangler to move into women's non denim wear
Wrangler that has a big presence in denim wear is re-entering the non-denim segment in which it launched some products between 1994 and 1999 under the 'Trail' label. This time Wrangler plans to launch non-denim products under the Wrangler brand.

The company is looking at non-denim, women's wear and tops in particular which is a growing segment. The Wrangler brand will move into these areas in a big way over the next few seasons. By 2005 spring / summer the visibility of these segments will increase and in autumn / winter 2005 the collection will be quite significant according to the company.

According to the company contributions from denim wear will come down to around 50 per cent while non-denims will contribute more than 15 per cent of the revenue. Ladies tops, which contribute 20 per cent now will by then average over 25 per cent.

O&M declared runner up in 'Office of Year' awards
Ogilvy & Mather India has been declared the first runner-up for the `Office of the Year' Award at the `Agency of the Year Awards' event conducted by Media magazine in Hong Kong on Thursday.

According to the agency, it was the only Indian agency among the winners who were chosen on the parameters of new business acquisition, contribution to industry advancement, industry recognition and staff training initiatives.

According to the Piyush Pandey, executive chairman and national creative director of the agency, "The fact that we have been declared the first runner-up in a highly contested competition in Asia serves to underpin our leadership position in India and, now, Asia. This award is particularly significant as the qualifying parameters span across 360-degree communication, therefore making this an incredible 360 win for the agency."

Increasing TV channels ads on radio, print
TV channels are increasingly advertising in newspapers, magazines and radio. According to a study by AdEx, a division of Tam Media Research, newspapers accounted for 53 per cent and radio 36 per cent of the total TV channel promotions / ads between July and September.

According to the study Zee Network spends are higher than Sony on magazines and radio while HBO (a Time Warner-owned channel) prefers magazines to radio and spends very little on radio. NDTV doesn't advertise on radio at all and Sony is among the highest spenders on newspapers, followed by Zee, Sahara, ESPN, Star, MTV, Discovery, NDTV, in that order. For radio spend, TV Today tops the list, followed by Zee, Star, Sony, ESPN, Sahara and MTV.

Regarding TV shows, Zee and Sony went in for starkly different media mix for their talent hunt shows Cinestars Ki Khoj and Indian Idol respectively in terms of allocation of spends on radio and press.

Zee Cinestars Ki Khoj went in for more of radio while Indian Idol was advertised more heavily on newspapers. Both shows stayed away from advertising in magazines.

African retailer Shoprite opens first store in Mumbai
Shoprite, Africa's top retailer, has opened its first shop in India. The shop measuring 55,000-sq. ft, is located at Nirmal Lifestyle Mall in Mumbai, and is a product of the group's joint venture with the Nirmal Lifestyle group.

According to company officials with the entry of Shoprite Group into India the current prices of some products would be halved and that the company would be setting a benchmark, to which the market would react. He said, "We work on the philosophy of offering the lowest price possible."

The hypermarket will store about 30,000 SKUs (stock keeping units) and will sell everything from toys to kitchen products, clothing and toiletries. Shoprite accounts for 70 per cent of the retail trade in South Africa.

Sources said, 40 per cent of the products would comprise meat and poultry products and fresh produce. In addition, India is already a sourcing base for the retailer, which sources ready-mix products such as idlis, vegetable oil, fruits and papads.

Airtel subscribers can download Hussain paintings
Airtel subscribers can now download paintings by M F Hussain as wallpapers on their mobile phones.

Airtel is offering this facility on its Airtel Live mobile entertainment portal that has reached a penetration level of 15 per cent of the customer base of Airtel, according to the company.

The M F Hussain wall painting download service will be available to Airtel customers who have the GPRS- / EDGE-enabled handsets.

Coruscant Tec, a mobile data, content, applications and solutions company has made this facility available to Airtel customers.

Gillette India to foray into food retailing
The Rs1,000-crore Poddar Heritage Group, the franchisee of Gillette India, Singer, Rosenbluth International and Style Spa in India is diversifying into the hospitality business.

The Group has recently launched its hospitality venture, Indigo Hospitality Pvt Ltd, and will roll out food outlets (in the fast-food format) serving North Indian cuisine. The group will launch the first outlet by February 2005 in the National Capital Region.

Over the next three years the group will roll out 30 such outlets in the next three years with the first ten outlets being company owned. The group also plans to open outlets outside the country and will start with Europe.

The company's investments in the project in the first year would be about Rs10 crore to be met through internal accruals. The group has appointed advertising agency RMG David to help establish the brand.

Hitachi focuses on the premium-end of CTV market
Japanese electronics giant, Hitachi Home Electronics, plans to capture a 20 per cent share in the premium CTV segment next year. So far, Hitachi is present only in the super-premium CTVs market in India.

The high-end CTV market, which is less competitive and has higher margins than the middle end consists of plasma and LCDs. It has been witnessing exponential growth and is expected to reach 7,500 units during the current fiscal year, up from 4,000 units last year.

Hitachi has rolled out new products in the market, which includes a LCD range starting at Rs2.5 lakh and a plasma CTV priced at Rs6.95 lakh.

Hitachi has opened 20 `experience zones' across all metro cities, which not only sell its products but also allow the consumer to experience the products.

Rado plans to increase sales of premium watches in India
Rado, part of the Swatch Group, (2003-04 turnover: 4-billion Swiss franc, i.e Rs15,200 crore), plans to increase its market share of premium and branded imported watches in India. Hence, the Swiss premium watchmaker has decided to open 20 additional outlets in the country by the end of 2005. It currently has 100 outlets.

The company has set up pilot showrooms Mumbai and Ahmedabad and soon, new showrooms will be opened at Bangalore, Hyderabad and Chennai while talks are underway for setting up pilot showrooms in Delhi and Kolkata as well. The number of service centres will also be augmented from 25 at present.

The Swatch Group has 16 brands on offer, including Omega, Rado, Longines and Tissot. The prices range of Swatch watches are priced in the $40 (Rs1,800) to $300,000 (Rs1.3 crore) range.

The Rado range of watches will be available in India between Rs15,000 and Rs1 lakh. The range of high-tech, scratch-proof, ceramic Rado watches will be available in India in the Rs50,000-Rs 60,000 range.

The company hopes that it will be able to sell as many as one lakh Rado watches priced above the $500-700 (Rs22,500-Rs31,500) price range next year.

Idea Cell banks on Sumo wrestlers
Sumo wrestlers Tachibana and Motohashi are responsible for making Idea Cellular's prepaid card campaign into a huge success. The two who regularly stage their little mock fights for audience benefit are currently touring the eight circles of Idea Cellular across the country to reinforce the brand association further.

In a celebrity-dominated segment, the wrestlers have helped Idea Cellular stand out in a crowded market and the Sumo campaign has proved to be a 'clutter buster'.

Company officials say the Sumo campaign has made Idea prepaid the second most recalled brand and Idea's brand health and equity has gone up resulting positively on the growth of Idea's prepaid cards. To stretch the brand visibility further, Idea Cellular is taking the two former Sumo wrestlers around the country on a road show. The sport from the Japanese Imperial Court is now regaling Idea's retailers and subscribers from Panipat to Pune.

Tachibana has earlier modelled for Pizza Hut in America and for Pepsi during the World Cup in Spain. Motohashi has retired from the ring.

Compiled by Mohini Bhatnagar

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