For the first time, the Indian Premier League (IPL) will come to blows with the controversial reality show Bigg Boss but broadcaster Colors seems relaxed with this. After prolonged periods of delay due to the Coronavirus-imposed lockdown, the IPL will finally be held between September 19 and November 3 in the UAE. The cricketing league is usually scheduled in the first half of the year.
Despite IPL being a big property, Colors is confident about receiving propulsion from both viewers and advertisers due to the reasons outlined below.
“Advertisers want viewers. Now the question is whether viewers will choose between IPL and Bigg Boss. That will not be the case because Bigg Boss is a 106-day property, starting on October 3 and going all the way up to January. IPL starts on September 19 and goes till November. The overlap will be 37 days,” Mahesh Shetty, Head, Network Sales, Viacom18, told Moneycontrol.
Viacom18 owns Colors channel, which broadcasts Bigg Boss. The show is produced by Endemol Shine, a Dutch production and distribution company, which is credited to bankroll global shows like Big Brother, MasterChef, among others.
“Even in these 37 days, there will be no clash as Bigg Boss starts at 10:30 pm and IPL starts at 7:30 pm and ends at 10:30 pm. So, the viewer can watch both. The overlap will be there only for four weekends because during weekends our show (Bigg Boss) is at 9 pm. So, an eight-day overlap is small,” he said.
For the 14th season of Bigg Boss, Shetty believes that most brands will return with advertisements.
“Last year, we had nine sponsors and we are confident that we will have nine or more this year. Also, like last season, we will have the same number of brands advertising this year,” he said. As many as 100 brands had advertised during Bigg Boss 13.
The only possibility which Shetty feels confident about is the timing of the show. “The show is during the festive period. So we expect strong viewership. Traction from brands is also good,” added Shetty.
While broadcasters are determined to not offer discounts, Shetty said they would have increased their rates for the new season of Bigg Boss by 25-30 percent, but for COVID-19. The 13th season of Bigg Boss turned out to be the most successful. The ad rates during the last season of Bigg Boss ranged between Rs 3 lakh and Rs 3.5 lakh for a 10-second slot.
Ad rates will seemingly see a rise if demand keeps on increasing, indicated Shetty. He presumes to sell 60 percent ad inventory before the beginning of Bigg Boss.
For the new season, the show has continued to maintain Dabur Dant Rakshak Ayurvedic Paste as one of the main sponsors, a brand which has been an active advertiser for both Hindi and the regional editions of Bigg Boss.
As far as new brands are concerned, Mobile Premier League (MPL) has replaced Vivo as the presenting sponsor and Hindustan Unilever is also on board now.