Saturday, September 4, 2010

Markathon June 2010

Dear Readers,

Football fever is gripping the world and I am no exception to it. Am no football fanatic and yet I stay up till two in the night to catch my daily dose of football action. The initial rounds have gone on predictable lines, except for the shocking exits of last year finalists France & Italy. The semi-final line up looks intriguing and am all pumped up to continue my short but exciting honeymoon with football Besides the riveting football action, what has caught my attention is the slew of advertisements put up by a number of biggies. Not at all surprising, considering the fact that the event, being held in South Africa, has reached out to approximately 19.7 million people in the first two days as opposed to 14.6 million people in 2006 and has seen a growth of 35 per cent in the reach. According to TAM Sports the top three categories of advertisers are cellular phones, cellular phone services & two wheelers and the top three advertisers are Bharti Airtel, Vodafone Essar & Nokia Corporation.
There is a clear trend here that can be observed. The cellular phone companies & service providers are visibly spending big bucks on this event and are going at full throttle. What could possibly be the reason for this spending spree?
One possible answer that pops up in my mind is the recently concluded 3G spectrum auction. Telecom companies have paid skyrocketing prices for bandwidth, exceeding the government’s expectations by a huge margin. Is this kind of splurge by the companies a sensible move?
So we thought why not discuss this issue in detail in this edition of Markathon. Besides, the Cover Story our Eye to Eye and Silent Voice sections also focus on the telecom sector.
The Cover Story delves deeply into strategies adopted by the different telecom players in this hypercompetitive market. Though everyone wants to be a part of the lucrative Indian market, there is a general feeling that the 3G auction binge has done irreparable damage to the financial abilities of telecom players, especially the newer ones. Pundits believe that the industry is going to witness massive consolidation with the bigger ones gobbling up the smaller ones who have been suffering from the low ARPUs and heavy licence fee. Though India has been late in joining the 3G bandwagon, it will do wonders to our country, especially rural India. But the journey is at its half way stage and the speed of roll out of 3G services will be critical. This is definitely a sector to watch out for!
Hope you find this issue of Markathon an interesting & engaging read. Please do send in your feedback, as it helps us grow and make Markathon a bigger brand.
Happy Reading.

Kaushik Subramanian

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