Karnataka Tourism amplifies its “Year of the Wild” campaign with the Indian Railways

Bengaluru: From showcasing eco-trekking along the scenic Western Ghats, to the celebration of the iconic Golden Chariot, Karnataka Tourism will look to intensify its 2017 campaign with its creative collaboration with India’s fastest growing digital outdoor media company, Vyoma Technologies. The association falls strategically in-line with the elevated impact and increased awareness Karnataka Tourism is looking to create across highly dynamic, engaging and measurable mediums in the country.

As new age medium gains thrust and enables overall campaign effectiveness, Vyoma technology’s collaboration with Karnataka Tourism is extremely befitting and imperative as the dynamic technology reaches a diverse, and large number of daily commuters and travellers. With the 2017 campaign titled ‘Year of the Wild’, looking to appeal to audiences across demographics, geographies and age groups, Vyoma’s intelligent displays, which is powered by curated audience engagement, will enable a reach of over 10 crore people a month. The campaign is currently running across 7 states including Maharashtra, Telangana, Bihar, Gujarat, Andhra Pradesh, Rajasthan and Karnataka.

The Ministry of Tourism numbers point to a record 15.5 per cent growth in domestic tourism in 2016. This registered a clear shift in traveller’s behaviour and upcoming holiday trend. While earlier seasoned travellers or travel enthusiasts used to visit, or look at International destinations, now ultramodern travellers are inclined towards exploring vast list of unexplored locations across India. The demand for experiential travel, focused on authentic, local and unique locations has immense potential to boost domestic tourism further. The Indian Railways’ recent policy change also reflect the objective to promote tourism by connecting tourist spots across the country through railways.

Vyoma technologies with its intelligent digital display network across the country has progressively strived to integrate technology and creativity to turn brand awareness into contextual engagement and customer adoption. Speaking on the potential of the medium and creative approach of Karnataka Tourism, Shriranga K. Sudhakara, MD, Vyoma recently said at a media meet, “Karnataka Tourism has been at the forefront of adopting innovative mediums, and we are very excited to partner with them and provide the massive reach of Indian Railways on a digital tech platform that offers both measurability and engagement.”

As Karnataka Tourism works towards cementing its position as one of India’s foremost destinations for outdoor and historical pursuits with a complex combination of cultures, flavours and picturesque locales, the association with Vyoma technologies is well placed to enhance customer targetability and inspire the ever evolving travelers.

Karnataka tourism has been leveraging on major mass transportation touch points like the Metro, Airport, Bus terminals and now the massive Indian railway reach is there to amplify this campaign. (Courtesy: Ideosphere Consulting)

Google, Microsoft and Reliance may participate in designing Railways Ad Tech

MUMBAI: Leading global companies such as Google, Microsoft and Reliance may be keen to take part in the Indian Railways project and help design platform screens advertising technology. Railways is putting together a strategy to launch two lakh screens across India, aiming at a revenue Rs 10,000 crore in 10 years, the Times of India reported, for which a tender could be awarded by May this year.

The content on demand on trains and at stations is a sizeable market. According to a report by the Boston Consulting Group (BCG), the infotainment market to be around Rs 2,277 crore in three years’ time.

The Railway Ministry, in a bid to revamp railways, may invite bids for Content on Demand (CoD) and railradio services in April. Services that would be included under the CoD initiative are — movies, TVserials, short videos, kids’ shows and devotional content. The CoD would also include streaming audio such as regional songs, movie songs, and devotional music; and providing electronic newspapers, gaming and educational content. Railways’ bids for app-based cab services will also be invited by May.

The video, radio, digital music and digital gaming contracts will be for a period of 10 years. The railways is, through these initiatives, expecting revenue of Rs 16,000-20,000 crore in 10 years.

As per the BCG report, to provide offline content, railways may have to shell out Rs 38,000 per coach. But, the online content will be expensive — for Rs 25 lakh each. Coaches are required to be well equipped to offer content streamed via the internet.

Railways to create Biggest Ad Platform outside TV – 2 Lakh Digital Screens will churn-out Rs.10000 Crore Revenue!

Digital Advertisements and Non-Fare Revenue push By Indian Railways to emerge a new savior for Indian Railways

NEW DELHI: It seems that monetization is Indian Railways’ biggest mission as of now, and they are leaving no stone unturned to pump up more revenues, from every possible inch of their procession.

As per reports coming in, Indian Railways is creating a massive Rail Display Network (RDN), which has been hailed as the largest advertisement platform outside television.

Armed with over 2 lakh digital screens, which would be installed across 2175 railway stations, Indian Railways is planning to generate Rs 10,000 crore of advertisement revenue from digital advertisements.

If executed, then this would be the largest non-fare revenue model for Indian Railways, till date.

Indian Railways have been incurring huge losses in their passenger operations segments, since ages. While Rs 33,491 crore was lost in maintaining passenger operations in 2014-15, Rs 35,918 crore was lost in 2015-16.

Due to this reason, Railways have been pushing for non-fare revenues since last few months, and in this endeavour, digital advertisements seem to be the most powerful one.

As per incoming reports, their Rail Display Network will install more than 2 lakh digital screens across 2000+ railway stations, wherein live tracking of trains would be enabled, and alongside, advertisements would be showcased to generate revenues.

Companies like Google, Microsoft and jio have already shown interest in this massive advertisement platform, through which Railways plan to churn out Rs 10,000 crore revenues in 10 years.

While such digital advertisements are already running as a pilot project in railway stations of Old Delhi, Gorakhpur, Gwalior and Varanasi, Indian Rail will soon allocate tenders for 400 A-category railway stations, starting from May.

Technologically powered by RailTel, these digital display screens would be ‘cloud controlled’ so that every frame of the advertisement is controlled via one central hub.

Earlier, in order to increase non-fare revenues, Indian Railways had introduced a series of plans and schemes.

For example, soon, trains such as Paytm Express and Savlon Mail would be running, as Indian Rail plans to run sponsored trains, with their outer and inner surface available for vinyl based advertisement sheets.

Besides, railway stations would be soon offered to host weddings, private parties and events, and even private companies would be roped in to manage railway stations, and generate revenues.

ATMs would be soon installed at railway stations, to generate even more revenues.

Earlier, reports had come in that IRCTC will monetize terabytes of user-data, which they have accumulated, to launch geo-specific targeted advertisements for increasing their revenues.

We will keep you updated as we receive more information regarding Indian Railways’ new plans for generating non-fare revenues.

PAC finds irregularities in award of advertisement contracts in Railways

NEW DELHI: A parliamentary committee has found irregularities in award of contracts of advertisements in the Mumbai division of the railways and recommended a CBI inquiry into it.

The Public Accounts Committee (PAC) in its latest report has noted the irregularities in award of contract of advertisements on a first come, first served basis which was prevailing in the Mumbai division for the last 25-30 years.

All contracts which were allotted on the basis of the first come, first served basis for commercial publicity should be terminated with immediate effect, the PAC headed by KV Thomas said in its report.

The committee has found that there was no transparency in award of contracts in Central Railway and Western Railway.

The Mumbai Division is part of Central Railway and Western Railway.

Taking note of the alleged fraud in allotment of advertisements and involvement of railway officials which were inquired into by the Central Vigilance Commission and action taken against a few officials, the committee recommended a CBI inquiry to probe.

The CBI inquiry should probe the first come, first served policy in Mumbai division, it said.

The committee is for strict action against erring contractors and officials involved in the alleged fraud.

Unless and until exemplary punishment is awarded to the corrupt officials from the top to the bottom, irregularities in commercial publicity in railways cannot be rooted out, the report said.

It has also highlighted the “lackadaisical attitude” of the railways in utilising its vast resources for generating additional revenue through advertising.

Taking note of the delay in tender finalisation for advertisement at stations, the PAC report said railways have taken longer than the stipulated period of 45 to 90 days and it resulted in losses to the public transporter.

Recommending a review of the process of contract formulation and execution, it has said that railways should “shed the nonchalant approach of condoning delays” in finalisation of contracts owing to precautionary approach.

The committee has also observed the lack of coordination between various zones.

It has suggested railways encourage the zones which earn maximum revenue through commercial publicity by giving them incentives to motivate others.

The PAC has also observed that the menace of unauthorised displays at the stations was a constant source of leakage of revenues of railways.

It has recommended exploring the feasibility of hallmarking of authorised symbols for contracted advertisements to avoid unauthorised hoardings and penalty for unauthorised publicity.

Branded Trains: Indian Railways to roll out PayTM Express and Savlon Swachh Bharat Express

NEW DELHI: PayTM Express and Savlon Swachh Bharat Express will soon chug along the tracks as the Indians Railways plans to roll out brand trains. Brands will find prominence on trains as the Railways have offered the inside and the outside of compartments for showcasing products. Coaches of premier trains will be used for vinyl advertising of various brands including mobile e-company PayTM and Savlon of ITC, a railway official said.

In an attempt to shore up its non-tariff revenue, railways will award advertising contracts of all Rajdhani, Shatabdi and Duronto Express shortly. Railways, which has earned Rs. 10,181 cror from non-fare revenue sector in the 2016-17, set an ambitious target of Rs. 14,000 crore in the current fiscal. Earnings from advertising on rail over bridge, rail under bridge, station and trains are part of the non-fare revenue which is being taken up in a focused manner now and railway has created a separate directorate for it.

“Besides premier trains, all mail and express trains are also on the offer for advertising and we are in the process of finalising the contracts,” said a senior Railway Ministry official. The contract will be given for five years which can be extended upto another 10 years depending upon the performance.

Railways have already sold rights for vinyl advertisements on four trains with an aim to earn over Rs. 8 crore in a year. The rights to put up vinyl wrapping advertisements on Mumbai Rajdhani, August Kranti Rajdhani, Mumbai-Ahmedabad Shatabdi and Ahmedabad-Mumbai double decker trains have been already awarded, official said.

He said the aim is to earn about Rs. 1,500 crore from vinyl wrappings in the next few years, subsequently all mail and express trains will be covered under the scheme. Earlier, railways had allowed vinyl wrapping but it failed to attract adequate revenue in the absence of long-term advertising policy framework. “Now a policy has been framed and we are ready to award the contract for as long as 10 years”, the official said.

Railways to auction Branding and Advertising Rights of Trains

NEW DELHI: The next time you board a Dehradun or Lucknow Shatabdi, it might be wrapped in Patanjali Ayurved signage and be called the Patanjali Shatabdi. Indian Railways will start mega auctions for the branding and advertising rights of over 1,000 of its trains from next week to monetise its existing assets.

Brands vying for these five-year contracts include Baba Ramdev’s Patanjali Ayurved and e-wallet giant PayTM

SK Tijarawala, spokesperson for Patanjali, confirmed that Patanjali was willing to use trains for its advertising and brand reach. “We are interested in buying these rights,” he said.

Patanjali, which has a portfolio of 350 products ranging from biscuits to shampoos, is among the top advertisers in the country. Brand experts say advertising through the railways will provide unmatchable visibility.

“Advertising through railways is much cheaper than outdoor advertising. Railways transport 2 crore people every day and the brand reach is much more than other mediums,” said a senior executive at a media buying firm that will be participating in the auction that starts next week. The technical bids for auction will start on Wednesday and go on for a month. Paytm did not respond to an email communication.

The auction will include the sale of branding and advertising rights on Rajdhani, Shatabdi, Jan Shatabdi, Garib Rath, superfast, express, suburban and even freight trains. Rights for ad space inside trains will be auctioned separately. The railways is eyeing revenue of Rs 1,000 crore annually through long-term contracts for trains. The railways will also start auctions for another ad vehicle — Radio Rail, an onboard entertainment system.

Pepsi Rajdhani, Coke Shatabdi on cards; Railways plans to brand Trains & Stations

New Delhi: You could soon be boarding a ‘Pepsi Rajdhani’ or ‘Coke Shatabdi’ and from a “branded” station at that. The railways has readied a plan to brand trains and stations to augment revenues without raising passenger fares or freight rates.

The proposal is ready and is expected to get the approval of the railway board next week.

Under the new policy, a company can buy consolidated media rights for branding the entire train. It can then advertise both inside and outside the bogies.

“The railways has shunned the earlier approach of selling advertisement rights on a piece-meal basis and is ready with plans to award media rights for the entire train (both inside and outside) and stations on a long-term basis to big corporate players,” said a senior official.

The plan was accelerated after Prime Minister Narendra Modi, at a recent meeting, asked the railway brass to mop up revenues from alternative sources like tapping advertisement potential.

Similar plans were announced during the previous UPA governments, but they did not materialise.

PM Modi, who often recalls his childhood days as a tea-seller on railway platforms, has been insisting on modernisation of the Railways with focus on worldclass stations and increasing revenue without additional burden on passengers.

Faced with a financial crunch, the state-run transporter is desperate to scramble funds through advertisements because a hike in passenger fares is ruled out for the time being, given upcoming assembly elections in five states, including Uttar Pradesh and Punjab.

The transporter has set an ambitious target of raising around Rs 2,000 crore in ‘nonfare’ revenue.

Late last year, the railways sold rights for vinyl wrapping advertisements on the exteriors of four trains with an aim to earn over Rs 8 crore in a year. The trains included Mumbai Rajdhani, August Kranti Rajdhani, Mumbai-Ahmedabad Shatabdi and Ahmedabad-Mumbai double-decker.

An official said the new policy will offer out-of-home advertising policy and allow monetisation of railway assets by means of advertising. Huge LED screens will come up at stations, platforms and foot overbridges (leading to station areas) for advertising.

The train branding packages will be offered through bidding in a phased manner, starting with Rajdhani and Shatabdi services.

Eyeing a substantial revenue from non-fare sources, railways will try to reach out to big names from the advertising world for spaces on trains, level crossings and areas along tracks besides offering major platforms for installing over 2,000 ATMs.

Railways mulling to rent spaces for Advertisements

Varanasi: General Manager of the Northern Railways AK Puthia today said the Indian Railways was mulling to further increase its revenue by renting its spaces for advertisements.

“In order to increase revenue, the Indian Railways is mulling to rent empty space on train coaches, wagons, buildings and platforms for advertisement. The advertisements will be collected through government and private agencies,” he said after inspecting the Varanasi Cantt Railway Station.

The railways would also put up posters of missing people, especially children, and a concerned helpline number will be on display at stations in public interest, he said.

While conducting the railway station’s inspection, Puthia, instructed officials to ensure cleanliness of platforms and waiting rooms.

“The Varanasi Cantt Railway station will be further developed and modernised. Facilities available at an airport will also be provided at this railway station,” he assured.

Work for doubling railway tracks on various routes including Bhadohi, Lambhua and others will be completed by 2017-end, he added.

PayTM express interest for placing Ads on 12617 Passenger Trains

paytm-rail-ad-bizNew Delhi: Trains in India might soon sport vinyl-wrap advertisements of PayTM, if sources are to be believed. The country’s largest mobile payment platform that also has an online marketplace is betting big on the railways to grab more eyeballs and, in the process, add customers to its 135-million user base.

As an initial step, the Vijay Shekhar Sharma-run firm has submitted a technical bid for vinyl-wrap advertising slots on 23 trains in the Central and Western Zones of the railways for a period of 10 years. These slots are to likely to be auctioned next week. Apart from PayTM, others in the fray are Media on Track, JCDecaux India, and TDI International India.

According to sources, PayTM has expressed an interest for placing such ads on all 12,617 passenger trains. While PayTM could use the space at its discretion and even sub-lease to other companies, it says it has no such plans as of now. According to railways officials, they’re expecting a revenue of about Rs 300 crore per annum from vinyl-wrap advertisements.

“The railways has huge potential for advertising as it runs about 13,000 trains a day, covering about 63,000 km, with passenger traffic of 23 million. PayTM is keen as this may grab more eyeballs than sponsoring a cricket match,” said a person close to the development.

The e-commerce giant, owned by One97 Communication, bagged the title sponsorship of the Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) for Rs 203 crore, or Rs 2.42 crore per match, for four years. According to sources, PayTM is also keen on participating in the upcoming auction for setting up executive lounges in railway stations. However, the firm would look at these at a later stage.

PayTM is one of the few start-ups to have made major inroads into the Indian Railways in the past year. It is the only mobile wallet that allows users to book train tickets online through the app and website courtesy its tie-up with Indian Railway Catering and Tourism Corporation (IRCTC).

The railways is planning to increase its non-fare revenue through advertisements. By March, it is likely to come up advertisement slots on a high-tech centralised network of 100,000 screens across 2,175 stations. It is also looking to tap outdoor advertisements across road-over-bridges, road-under-bridges and level crossings on a zonal basis.

In recent months, PayTM has seen exponential growth in its travel marketplace. Its bus tickets business recently broke even, while the hotel booking category is expected to start generating profits soon. “Our alliance with IRCTC is a major leap, as it completes the spectrum of air, road and rail ticket booking solutions available on Paytm. This is a significant milestone in our efforts to build India’s largest travel marketplace,” Abhishek Rajan, Vice-President, PayTM, said.

Indian Railways is also working on a plan to switch over to cash-less electronic payments for all its transactions. While around a half of all passenger tickets are currently sold through IRCTC, the new plan envisages bringing the remaining half, sold through PRS counters, under the electronic net.

The implementation of the new plan would also bring the Unreserved Ticketing System (UTS) under the electronic net. Sources said PayTM has also presented railways with solutions to capture the UTS segment.

Uniform Advertising across New Zones by Next Year: Railways

A uniform approach for advertising across different railway zones will be in place by next year, sources from railway office informed. The approach is meant to further explore advertising potential and help increase earnings for railways.

New Delhi: A uniform approach for advertising across different railway zones will be in place by next year, sources from railway office informed. The approach is meant to further explore advertising potential and help increase earnings for railways.

Till now, railway zones including Central and Western Railways have invited individual tenders from bidders without specifically restricting to any form of advertising for incurring revenue for the department. Sources from railways confirmed that starting April next year, a uniform approach will be implemented that will increase competition and cut across various railway zones.

“The entire aim of the new approach will be to increase advertising potential and increase earnings. Each railway division will be included under the approach which will aim at inviting more competitors and further allow advertisers to advertise their products in different cities and states. Consultants have been roped in for designing this lengthy policy for the railways,” a senior WR official said.

According to the official letter received by the railway departments, Board has formed a separate revenue directorate in the Ministry for the same.The package of tenders invited and proper marketing at appropriate forums will raise advertising revenue, the circular reads.

It states, “The Railway Minister has set an ambitious target of Rs 1700 crore from advertising revenue. The new policy is being developed with involvement of RITES and Ernst and Young as Professional Market Media Evaluation Agency (PMMEA) and it is expected that the new policy will create a framework to achieve the target. A separate multi-discipline directorate – the Non Fare Revenue Directorate- has been created in the Ministry of Railways to co-ordinate this exercise.”

Since August 10, both Central and Western Railways have been asked to stop tendering process related to advertising revenue till March 31 next year. While those sanctioned before August are allowed to continue, officials will be allowed to sanction others ending before March 2017 on a pro rata basis to avoid loss of revenue.

“We have been asked to stop inviting tenders for different forms of advertising including external wrapping, internal product sale, on-board entertainment, rail radio, audio advertising and other forms of advertising done inside stations. We have been asked to wait till next year for the new approach to come in. While this was intimated to us in June, a final decision of the same was taken in August,” a senior CR official said.

However, railway authorities are puzzled whether the uniform approach will bring equal or more revenue for the department as witnessed in present. “The approach mainly aims at tapping those unused sectors, unexplored railway zones and thus encouraging competition and scope for advertising. However, knowing the commercial value of strategic railway points in Mumbai, it is difficult to comment if the policy will benefit increase earnings from advertising from here,” a senior WR official said.

“If the new approach encourages more new forms of media like electronic and audio forms, it may sure boost revenue. However, sticking to traditional forms or keeping a uniform cost may not help that much,” a senior CR official said.

The Central Railway was almost 87% behind target of meeting advertising revenue target between April-August as they incurred only 13.12 crore in comparison to a target set by Board of making 101.14 crores. While Western Railway made 24.04 crores in the same period while falling short by 81% of the target set of 127 crores by Railway Board.

Railway plans foray into radio to boost non-fare revenue

Rail Radio FMNew Delhi: The Railway Ministry plans to foray into radio broadcast to provide free onboard and customised entertainment across all trains in order to boost its advertising revenue.

The Non-Fare Revenue (NFR) Directorate of Railway Ministry pegs the revenue from advertisements through onboard radio at over Rs 100 crore per year.

Last year’s total advertising earnings were Rs 263 crore.

According to a senior official, the capital expenditure in setting up speakers and amplifiers for the purpose is expected to be around Rs 40 crore while the operating expenditure per year is estimated at nearly 3 crore.

Neither of the two expenditures will be borne by Railways.

The project will be tendered to the highest bidder on revenue sharing model.

Once implemented, all trains will have a customised playlist of music, which could vary statewise.

The onboard Public Announcement (PA) system will also be used to disseminate passenger convenience related information, like delay in arrival, reason for delay, among others.

These will be interspersed with advertisements.

Currently, the ministry is considering internet-based radio for a wider reach across its entire network but is open to alternative technology or medium, sources said.

A server on the train will download the content as and when internet network is available and will keep a buffer of 6 to 8 hours in case the train is passing through remote areas with no internet coverage to ensure uninterrupted playout.

According to a KPMG-FICCI study, the advertising revenue of the Media and Entertainment industry is expected to grow at 15.9 per cent in the next five years and will generate Rs 994 billion.

By 2020, the advertising revenue through TV is likely to be at Rs 364 billion, while that from print at Rs 286 billion.

Similarly, revenue from digital advertising is likely to grow to Rs 255 billion and from radio it is expected to reach Rs 43 billion.

Out of Home (OOH) – advertisements on railway property – media is expected to fetch Rs 45 billion.

Times OOH, Media on Track, TDI Intl India & JCDecaux India eye IR vinyl-wrap plan

Ad wrapped trains1The Indian Railways’ vinyl-wrap advertising plan for Mumbai-based trains has attracted interest from agencies such as Times OOH, Media on Track, TDI International India (P) Ltd and JCDecaux India, among others.

According to officials in the ministry of railways, who spoke requesting anonymity, these agencies have come in at the pre-bidding stage, wherein prospective bidders clarify their concerns, if any.

“Pre-bidding consultation for the vinyl-wrap tender of Mumbai-based trains was held on Tuesday (23 August). They have some demands. We are looking into it,” said a railway ministry official requesting anonymity.

The railways is trying to shore up its non-fare revenue through advertising. It is working to advertise on a high-tech centralised network of 100,000 screens across 2,175 stations by 31 March next year. In addition, it also aims to call for tenders on a zone-wise basis for outdoor advertisements across road-over-bridges, road-under-bridges and level crossings.

This comes at a time when the national carrier is under financial stress and is looking to monetise all available resources.

“They (bidders) are asking for a contract period of 10 years instead of seven years. This contract is going to be awarded train-wise. By mid-September, we should have the first rake ready and we are expecting revenue of around Rs.200-300 crore,” said the official quoted above.

A rake is a set of railway coaches coupled together.

Queries emailed to the spokesperson of the ministry of railways on 24 August, to JCDecaux India and TDI International India on 25 August, and Times OOH on 26 August remained unanswered.

An official spokesperson for Media on Track said that the agency keeps taking projects for railway advertising.

It was earlier reported that vinyl advertising plan may face hurdles given the lack of dedicated rakes.

According to a second official from the ministry of railways, who also requested anonymity, the national carrier has decided to allot fixed rakes to advertisers in order to tackle the challenge.

“We have coupled trains whose rakes are used interchangeably. So, for example, if Paschim Express goes from Delhi to Mumbai and then the same rake goes from Mumbai to Nagpur and then it comes back from Nagpur to Delhi, all these three trains have to be given together to one advertiser. That’s how these issues will get resolved,” the official explained.

According to experts, vinyl advertising has a potential of garnering more revenue than the projected estimates.

“Wrap advertising is the most fantastic idea that railways has come up with. I think Rs.500 crore would be a base price as I believe the prices would go up much higher. I would actually dump the outdoor budget for vinyl-wrap advertising. It’s far more conversational, it travels and it’s not really static at one place and the kind stuff that can be done in that is a challenge in itself,” said Naresh Gupta, chief strategy officer and managing partner at Bang in the Middle, a creative agency.

Gupta added that it is really a buzz-worthy idea.

The national carrier plans to increase its non-fare revenue from the current 5% to 10-20%, as is a norm for many railway systems across the world.

Railways to Ad-wrap Passenger Trains including Rajdhani, Shatabdi; targets 300 Crore revenue

Rajdhani Ad WrapIndian Railways is all set to roll out ad-wrapped trains with start of tendering process for 23 trains, including Rajdhani and Shatabdi. Railways is eyeing to earn Rs 300 crore revenue from vinyl wrapping on outer surface of trains.

Initially, Railway is offering 23 trains in Central and Western Zone and bid has to be submitted by September 3. The trains have been divided in six groups consisting of Rajdhani, Shatabdi, Double Decker, Mail and Express trains.

There have been examples in the past where vinyl wrapping has been done on trains but Indian Railways is now planning to take it in a big way and has plans to wrap over 10,000 trains. Railways now plans to offer vinyl wrapping option on all trains in future as according to a study by RITES, a Mini Ratna Central Public Service Enterprise under the Ministry of Railways, advertising on trains has a good potential to increase railways revenue manifold.

“Using outer surface of trains for advertising has good potential to earn revenue as it will catch eyeballs and industry will get a captive audience. It will also save the cost of painting of coaches and easy to maintain. The idea is that railways income should not be solely dependent on freight and passenger fare,” said a senior railway officer.

CMD BSNL near Rajdhani Ad WrapRITES in a study has found that railways has potential to earn Rs 10,000 crore a year just by selling space for advertising in coaches, wagons and stations among others. But, Railway feel that the analysis is very conservative and actual revenues from these sources could be much higher.

The government run transporter is now focusing on three non fare areas for generating revenues – train wrapping, display network and advertising on external surface. Vinyl wrapped trains would soon be rolled out with railways completing all formalities.

Railway Minister Suresh Prabhu in his budget speech has focused on exploring non fare revenues for improving ailing railways.  A non fare revenue directorate has been created in the Railway Board with a mandate for enhancing revenues by 10 percent to 20 percent from non-tariff sources.

Railway has huge potential to use its space for advertising as it runs 13000 trains per day on 63,000 kilometer of track and carries 23 million passengers – equivalent to population of Australia.

Voda Ad wrapped train

Ad space on Delhi Metro in high demand

Delhi Metro allows only 21 of its trains to be used for ad wraps; it earns Rs. 32 crore a year

PNBHFL Advertisement on the coaches of Delhi Metro Rail Corp.
PNBHFL Advertisement on the coaches of Delhi Metro Rail Corp.

New Delhi: The concept of ‘Metro wrap’ ads, where the entire Metro train is covered with ads, is becoming so popular that demand for them has surpassed the total number of trains available for the purpose.

Since its launch in October 2014, the Delhi Metro has had at least 30 companies that have opted for this form of advertising and a dozen others are in queue.

The demand and supply gap arises because the Delhi Metro Rail Corporation (DMRC) allows only 10 per cent of its coaches per corridor to be wrapped with ads. Hence, only 21 trains of the total 208 trains can be wrapped with ads.

But, the DMRC and the ad agency, Eg.Communications Private Limited, which has been given the responsibility for the ad wraps, aren’t complaining.

The ad agency earns about Rs. 25 lakh from advertisers to wrap coaches of the Metro for a month, it pays the DMRC Rs. 32 crore per annum for the space.

“This concept has been a success due to the sheer magnanimity of the space available for advertising and of course, the huge ridership of the Delhi Metro. Each six-coach Metro train body provides 7,000 square feet of space for ads. Moreover, these ad-wrapped trains grab five million eyeballs on a daily basis. So for an advertiser, his job is done in a matter of seconds when a commuter or a person travelling in car sees the Metro passing by,” said Manish Sethi, director of Eg.Communications Private Limited.

At present, 12 trains are ad wrapped and order for four others are pending, Mr. Sethi said.

These trains run on all lines of the Metro network except the Red Line (Rithala-Dilshad Garden).

The Delhi Metro has a daily ridership of 26 lakh and about 70 per cent of commuters spend at least 30 minutes in the Metro network daily.

The first ad wrapped train was from Morpheus Group. It was rolled out in October 2014. The second was by Indiamart. Amazon.in, Renault, Snapdeal, Mother Dairy, ONGC, Bank of Baroda, PNB Housing, Micromax, Oppo, Fortune, Myntra, Dhara, Gulf and Hike have advertised on train bodies.

“Wraps are put only on six-coach trains as the fabrication cost is very high. Around Rs. 8 lakh per train goes in making, pasting and removing these ads,” said Mr Sethi.

The agency maintains that increasing the number of trains under this ad category is not necessary as fewer trains help in building high brand recall among people.

Railways to issue Tender for Vinyl-wrap Advertisements on Premier Trains to spur revenue

Ad wrapped trainsNew Delhi: Ad-wrapped trains might soon replace the trademark red bogies of Rajdhanis with Indian Railways ready to issue tender for vinyl wrapping of premier trains to start with. Seen as one of the source of revenue, railways will allow advertisers to buy space on outer areas of trains for advertising.

Initially, railway is offering selected Rajdhani trains originating from Delhi for vinyl wrapping. Delhi-Mumbai Central Rajdhani and August Kranti Rajdhani from Nizamuddin to Mumbai central are two trains where tender for vinyl wrapping are expected soon. Next in line are Shatabdis running in Northern Railways.

Ad wrapped trains1Railways plans to offer vinyl wrapping option on all trains in future as according to a study by RITES, a Mini Ratna Central Public Service Enterprise under the Ministry of Railways, advertising on trains has a good potential to increase railways revenue manifold.

“Vinyl wrapping will also save the cost of painting of coaches and easy to maintain. The added advantage is it will catch eyeballs and industry will get a captive audience. We are trying to use all available railways resources to increase revenues. The idea is that railways income should not be solely dependent on freight and passenger fare,” said a senior railway officer.

Ad wrapped trains3There have been examples in the past where vinyl wrapping has been done on trains but Indian Railways is now planning to take it in a big way and has plans to wrap over 10,000 trains. RITES in a study has found that railways has potential to earn Rs 10,000 crore a year just by selling space for advertising in coaches, wagons and stations among others. But, Railway feel that the analysis is very conservative and actual revenues from these sources could be much higher.

Ad wrapped trains4Railway Minister Suresh Prabhu in his budget speech has focused on exploring non fare revenues for improving ailing railways.  A non fare revenue directorate has been created in the Railway Board with a mandate for enhancing revenues by 10 percent to 20 percent from non-tariff sources.

The non-fare revenue directorate would look into areas like advertising at stations, commercial exploitation of vacant land and space rights over station buildings, advertising on coaches, monetization of soft assets, including generation of revenue from websites through advertisements, operation of pay and use toilets in land outside railway stations interactive services in railway premises and tourism.

Railway has huge potential to use its space for advertising as it runs 13000 trains per day on 63,000 kilometer of track and carries 23 million passengers – equivalent to population of Australia.
Ad wrapped trains5

Railways sets up Directorate to generate Funds via Advertisements

Advertisement DirectorateNew Delhi: n yet another move, albeit an incremental one, aimed at restructuring the railways board on functional lines, the national transporter has set up a new directorate to generate funds in a big way through advertisements and find the right players for commercial exploitation of its land.

This is not the first time the railways is trying to raise resources from non-tariff sources, but the setting up of the ‘non-fare revenue directorate’, which comes after a ‘mobility directorate’ was formed, indicates rail minister Suresh Prabhu’s strategy to slowly push structural reforms in the mammoth PSU.
Another directorate for environment and housekeeping is already functioning. The next step in Prabhu’s plan seems to be organising the national transporter on business lines by assigning functional roles to members of the board.

The signal and telecom department, which was till now under the Member (Electrical), has been placed under the member (engineering), who heads the civil engineering department.

“The move hints at a plan to create a new post of member (fixed infrastructure),” said an official, adding that the next step could be creation of the post of member (rolling stock) and member (traction) by merging electrical and mechanical departments .

The minister has initiated a slew of reform measures, but the “slow” pace has raised a few questions. However, a few see Prabhu’s gradual approach as a clever strategy to steer the reforms without annoying powerful employee’s unions .

Ernst & Young appointed as Consultant to tap Advertising Potential of Indian Railways

Indian Railways appoints Ernst & Young (EY) as consultant to mop up Rs.5000 Crore advertising revenue potential from the Railway Stations and Passenger Trains.  EY – a global leader in its Assurance, Tax, Transaction and Advisory services shall identify assets and pricing strategy across 7000 stations for the purpose of advertising. EY will not only help the Railways identify ‘ad-worthy’ assets across stations and routes, but also come up with a Pricing Strategy

Ernst & Young Railways AdvertisingNew Delhi: Initiating a large-scale exercise to identify and leverage pan-India advertising opportunities in railway stations and trains, Indian Railways has appointed Ernst & Young (trading as EY) as consultant to undertake this job on its behalf.

Headquartered in London, EY operates as a network of member firms which are separate legal entities in individual countries. The Railway PSU, RITES, the consulting wing for Indian Railways, awarded the mandate to EY following a multi-party bid, said a release.

Minister of Railways Suresh Prabhakar Prabhu has been emphasising on increasing revenues through the non-fare box route, especially through advertising. Initial estimates have indicated the advertising potential of the Railways in excess of Rs. 5,000 crore over the next few years.

EY has been assigned the job of tapping the advertising potential of Indian Railways assets, including a fleet of trains in a wide network of about 7,000 railway stations across India. EY’s specialised offering, Marketing and Advertising Risk Services (MARS), will help Indian Railways identify assets across its stations for the purpose of advertising and will also develop a pricing strategy to evaluate them for advertisers. The firm has commenced its exercise.

This is the first time in the country that such a large scale project on advertising for Railways has been initiated. The move aims to enhance revenue through non-fare box route as emphasized by Railway Minister. The exercise to help develop packages meeting specific demographic and geographic needs ensuring ease of business to advertisers and increased transparency & accountability and also help create a neutral assessment on the return of investments by advertisers in this medium.

In preliminary discussions held between Railway and EY officials, it was emphasised that the exercise would be completed in a time-bound frame.

Currently, advertisers face a number of concerns in the outdoor media industry, including lack of reliable data pertaining to site visitors and vandalism of outdoor assets. Hence, an important aspect of this exercise will be the creation of packages that meet specific demographic and geographic needs. Further, the advertising contracts need to be modified so as to allow ease of business to advertisers and increase transparency and accountability.

A unique aspect of this exercise will be the creation of a neutral assessment on the return on investments by advertisers in this medium. Advertisers struggle with the measurability of traditional media. In the case of railway assets, eyeballs, quantity of time spent and segmentation of viewers is highly quantifiable as the Railways maintains ticketing and station footfall data in its database.

In these discussions, Chairman, Railway Board, A.K.Mital said “this move by the Indian Railways will allow for revenue enhancement for the enterprise without putting any burden on its passengers. EY and Indian Railways will engage with leading advertisers through the course of this project for effective optimisation of railway assets. In the past, the railways has used its assets to earn revenues through advertising, but limited the same to train wraps and display spaces in stations. This is the first time that a large-scale project to identify and leverage pan-India advertising opportunities has been initiated.”

As per media reports, Farokh Balsara, Partner and National Leader – Media and Entertainment, EY India said, “there has never been a nation-wide assessment of the advertising potential of assets on such a large scale. We are excited and proud to be associated with Indian Railways on a project that will generate advertising revenues and, in turn, help to expand and improve services for commuters. This aligns with EY’s purpose of building a better working world.”

News media also reported Bharat Rajamani, Director, EY India, saying “through this mandate we will create a new medium for advertisers to leverage in order to reach their target audience. With a large expanse of assets and high measurability of its reach, the Indian Railways’ assets will be beneficial to local and national clients alike.”

RoI for Advertisers

The Ministry said a “unique” aspect of this exercise will be the creation of a neutral assessment on the return of investments (RoI) for advertisers.

Advertisers usually struggle with the measurability of traditional media. In the case of railway assets, their fears will be allayed, said the release. This is because eyeballs, quantity of time spent and segmentation of viewers are highly quantifiable, as the Railways maintains ticketing and station footfall data as part of its database.

Hoardings on Railway property need Corporation nod: Madras High Court

Hoardings Rly LandsChennai: Holding the hoardings erected within railway premises too must have approval from corporation authorities or district collector, the Madras high court has given agencies which own such structures to apply for necessary permission within 15 days. The competent authorities concerned would pass orders on the applications within 30 days thereafter, it said.

Dismissing a big batch of petitions filed by hoarding owners and agencies, the first bench comprising Chief Justice Sanjay Kishan Kaul and Justice T S Sivagnanam said: “It shall be your responsibility to obtain permission, permit and licence from the municipal corporation or any other government or local departments for display, as and when required, so as not to contravene any rule or law of the land.”

The common question taken up for consideration was whether railway administration’s permission would suffice to display advertisements on railway property or it would require the nod from municipal corporation/district collector.

The bench said the agencies must pay the municipal corporation or any other government department concerned requisite licence fee and taxes.

MP High Court issues Notice to CRB over illegal hoardings in Railway areas

CourtJabalpur (JBP): The Madhya Pradesh High Court has issued notice to the Railway Board Chairman on a petition challenging putting up of illegal hoardings – on land belonging to Railways – overlooking streets. Hearing a revised petition by Mr Satish Verma, a division bench comprising Chief Justice AM Khanwilkar and Justice KK Trivedi issued the notice yesterday.

NHRC issue notices to Secretary, Railway Board and several others over death of a youth

Lucknow: In another case, the National Human Rights Commission has issued notices to Railway Board secretary and Senior Superintendent of Police (SSP) of Sant Kabir Nagar district in Uttar Pradesh over death of a youth who was pushed from a running train by a TTE. The Commission took suo motu cognizance of a media report that a youth fell on the track and died when a Travel Ticket Examiner (TTE) on board Gorakhdham Express pushed him out of the running train near Khalilabad Railway Station on the July 23 last.

Chennai Metro Rail calls for advertisements on trains

Chennai (MAS): Amid indications that Chennai Metro Rail may roll out ‘soon’ between Koyambedu to Alandur, officials have begun to make plans for putting up advertisements in trains and stations.

According to officials of Chennai Metro Rail Limited (CMRL), the advertisements will augment their non-operational revenue.

They also expect the advertisements to “promote Chennai Metro as the gateway to Chennai tourism by highlighting its heritage and cultural beauty and promote the city as amongst India’s top three destinations for advertising,” the official said.

“We have just floated the tenders; it may take at least a month for us to finalise the project. Some companies have already enquired about the provisions for advertisements,” a CMRL official said.

Officials have already earmarked places for putting up advertisements in stations along this 10-km stretch from Koyambedu to Alandur and also in the trains, the official added.

The trains may also have ‘wrap advertising’, CMRL officials said.

Places earmarked already for putting up advertisements in stations and also on the trains

Indian Railways Comprehensive Commercial Publicity and Advertisement Policy to be tabled soon

New Delhi: Indian Railways is in the process of finalising a Branding Policy for trains, coaches, stations and even consumables such as bedding, an initiative that’s expected to raise as much as Rs 9,000 crore for the cash-strapped organisation.

A Task Force headed by Railway Board Member (Traffic) Ajay Shukla will submit a detailed report on the issue by April 30 to finalise a comprehensive commercial publicity policy and its operational framework. The task force was formed by railway minister Suresh Prabhu after engineering consultancy RITES Ltd estimated earnings from the advertisement and branding opportunity in Indian Railways.

“The minister is open to the idea of auctioning names of stations and even trains to corporates,” an official said.

The RITES study in consultation with the advertising industry said the railways could earn as much as Rs 780 crore a year by selling advertising space on 26 Rajdhanis 20 Shatabdis and 32 Duronto trains alone. “These trains combined offer advertisers 4 lakh captive eyeball contacts of passengers, plus 80 lakh casual eyeball contacts, in addition to premium branding rights,” the report said.

A similar assessment has been given for 500 other superfast mail and express trains, 2,000 passenger trains, 100 local trains and 1 lakh wagons. The earning potential of different categories of rolling stock will vary. Premium trains such as the Rajdhanis and Shatabdis will attract a certain category of advertisers.

These will differ in the case of ordinary, mail and freight trains. The RITES has suggested branded train schemes, branded station schemes and freight wagons sponsorship.

RITES conducted its study in December at the direction of the railway minister, who was looking for innovative means of generating resources. The RITES chairman is part of the task force and sources in Rail Bhavan said the organisation could play the role of consultant implementing the project.

Gurgaon’s Rapid Metro and, more recently, Delhi Metro Railway Corporation have been generating revenue by tying up with corporates. Rapid Metro has sold naming rights for stations to companies. Delhi Metro recently awarded rights for wrapping its six-coach trains with ads.

PNB Housing Finance Limited embraces Delhi Metro Rail as its Branding Canvas

New Delhi: PNB Housing Finance Limited (PNBHFL) has joined hands with Delhi Metro Rail Corporation to kick-start its outdoor brand campaign that will amplify its reach with the target audience. 3 metros are wrapped in PNB Housing imagery on the train’s body for a period of 2 months covering Noida, Delhi and Gurgaon. With a ridership of around 10 lacs per day on the Noida – Dwarka route and 9 lacs per day on the Gurgaon route, the campaign is expected to give a huge thrust to PNB Housing’s brand campaign.

PNBHFL Advertisement on the coaches of Delhi Metro Rail Corp.
PNBHFL Advertisement on the coaches of Delhi Metro Rail Corp.

Elaborating on the branding tie-up rationale, Mr Sanjaya Gupta – Managing Director, PNB HFL, stated: “Given the Metro’s high ridership, its captive-audience quotient is unmatched in Delhi NCR. For the first time, therefore, in order to widen our reach and initiate a direct customer connect, PNB HFL has chosen this outdoor branding route via the Delhi Metro. We believe this strategy can have an irresistible allure for Metro travellers – particularly the next generation that has yet to settle down and seeks the best home loan option to purchase their dream home. As PNB HFL strives to provide a comprehensive bouquet of home loan solutions to customers, the tie-up with Delhi Metro could facilitate this exciting journey of growth and expansion.”

Commenting on the tie-up, Shaji Varghese (CMO & Business Head at PNBHFL), said: “It is a strategic decision to choose DMRC for our outdoor branding campaign. DMRC is a high-impact medium that grabs commuters’ eyeballs directly day after day at Metro stations. Even road travellers cannot miss the medium as the Metro passes through elevated corridors. We expect the metro brand campaign would create a high brand recall among the large pool of commuters and help them recognize ‘PNB Housing’ reinvented as a contemporary brand.

Across its entire network, Delhi Metro operates 6 lines, attracting a total ridership of approx 27 lacs per day.

About PNB Housing Finance Limited (PNBHFL)

A housing finance company registered with National Housing Bank, PNBHFL is a subsidiary of Punjab National Bank (PNB), incorporated under the Companies Act, 1956, which commenced operations on 11 November 1988. PNBHFL provides housing loans to individuals and corporate bodies for construction, purchase, repair and upgradation of homes. It also provides loans for commercial space, loan against property and loan for purchase of residential plots.

Railways may allow Corporate Houses brand Trains & Stations

rail-budget-2015-corporate-houses-may-now-brand-trains-and-stationsनई दिल्ली New Delhi: This year, you may end up boarding Amul Shatabdi to Flipkart Chandigarh if the railway ministry accepts the recommendation of a committee set up to improve the finances of Indian Railways.

Headed by former financial services secretary DK Mittal, the committee has recommended that a policy framework should be drawn to allow corporate houses brand trains and stations such as Amul Shatabdi/Railway Station. “We are looking at the recommendations and some of them may form a part of the rail budget,” said a senior government official aware of the deliberations.

The committee in its report has said railways can raise around Rs 8,000 crore through such a corporate branding exercise and other initiatives, which it thinks could be a low-hanging fruit.

“The action plan has been prepared to improve finances of the railways in the shortest possible time,” said Mittal, refusing to comment on the possible suggestions. The committee in its report had said a time bound plan should be in place and top 200 stations should be identified for this purpose.

At present, Indian Railways is grappling with its worst-ever financial crisis as its operating ratio has touched 95%, and there’s no cash to clear the pending projects worth Rs 2.5 lakh crore. The committee was set up by railway minister Suresh Prabhu to suggest ways and means to raise the revenue.

“For railways, 10-20% revenues from non-fare sources would be a good target. Against this potential, railways earns less than 3% non-fare revenues. At 10% level, IR can expect additional revenue of around Rs 15,000 crore per annum, with nil or minimal capital outlay,” a senior railway board official told on condition of anonymity.

Non-fare revenue is a significant source of income for railway systems across the world. The range of this revenue is widespread with some international railways earning more than 35% of their revenues from non-fare sources.

Non-fare revenue is a significant source of income for railway systems across the world. The range of this revenue is widespread with some international railways earning more than 35% of their revenues from non-fare sources.

Railways has a very large asset base, which can be leveraged for monetisation and revenue generation, said the above quoted official. Operating assets of railways which could be further monetised through advertising include about 60,000 coaches and 2.5 lakh wagons and around 10,000 locomotives, above 7,000 stations used by over 840 crore passengers annually.

Non-operating assets include about 3.9 Lakh hectares of land that is currently under use and over 43,000 hectares of land at various locations that are identified as not needed for operational use and land in numerous railway residential quarters where there is scope for re-development.

The committee has also suggested that lands next to tracks which could be leased out for plantation for a period of six years needs to be identified. Revenue can also be earned by leasing land and platform roofs for installation of solar panels. More land will also be identified for real estate development through which railways can earn around Rs 6,000 crore annually.

Railways’ can float new PSU to tap Rs.10000 Crore Advertisement Market: RITES

New Delhi: The cash-strapped Railways has potential to earn Rs.10000 Crore a year just by selling space for advertising in train coaches, on wagons, stations and even tickets to premium brands, an audit report said.

Soon after assuming charge, Railway Minister Suresh Prabhu asked Railways’ engineering firm RITES to do the first-ever professional assessment of how much money the Railways could earn from selling the ad-space. A detailed report has been presented to Prabhu in this regard, which also suggested that Ministry of Railways can even float a PSU only to tap the potential market from Advertisement, media and entertainment.

The assessment has broken down the earning potential into different categories of rolling stock Railways has. The target audience in premium trains like Rajdhanis and Shatabdis are perceived to be different from that in ordinary mail/express trains. Similarly, wagons will attract different type of clients, so the branding and the rates will also be different. It calls for Branded Train Scheme, Branded Station Scheme and Freight Wagons Sponsorship.

Prime Minister Narendra Modi had given a similar suggestion to the Railways to use wagons as a means for earning advertising revenue — money that was considered as good as lying unclaimed by the national transporter.

From 26 Rajdhanis, 20 Shatabdis and 32 Duronto trains alone, the Railways could earn Rs 780 crore per year by selling advertisement space. These trains combined offer advertisers “four lakh captive eyeball contacts of passengers, plus 80 lakh casual eyeball contacts in addition to premium branding rights”, the report said.

A similar assessment has been given for 500 other superfast mail/express trains, 2,000 passenger trains, 100 local trains and 1 lakh wagons.

“For the study to be a realistic assessment, the RITES took into account practices applied in the current advertising industry to assess worth of branding, and references from present market rates,” said a senior official.

Advertising has never been a successful avenue of earnings for railways as all efforts have in the past have been in piecemeal. The new report has recommended to Prabhu that a Comprehensive Commercial Publicity Policy be formulated by the ministry and a multi-disciplinary Task Force should be formed.

IndiaMART gets Ad Space on DMRC’s Jahangirpuri-Huda City Centre Yellow Line Route

Delhi-Metro-IndiaMARTनई दिल्ली New Delhi: IndiaMART has found advertising space on a Yellow Line Route (Jahangirpuri to Huda City Centre) metro. The fully wrapped metro features brand ambassador Irrfan Khan and the brand message ‘Kaam yahin banta hai’.

IndiaMART is the first company to join hands with Delhi Metro Rail Corporation (DMRC) for a brand-wrapped metro on this key route. Another wrapped metro on the Blue Line route, from Dwarka to Noida was initiated today. Sumit Bedi, Vice President – Marketing, IndiaMART is thrilled at being the first to do so. Metro’s popularity promises to create a high brand recall among people.

The Yellow line route includes important business hubs like Chandni Chowk, Chawri Bazar and Kashmere Gate, and Gurgaon, home to big corporate houses. IndiaMART is confident that this initiative would help reach out to a large pool of commuters.

The wrap features various contextual messages featuring Irrfan Khan, who connects with commuters by communicating about IndiaMART in an exciting manner. Bedi believes this will go a long way in creating a desirable impact in the minds of people. IndiaMART’s brand campaign is inclusive of varied mediums – TV, radio, online, and now OOH.

Railways to Mop Up resources through Advertisements

नई दिल्ली New Delhi: In an attempt to mop up additional resources, railway minister Suresh Prabhu has pushed a plan for generating funds through advertisements. The minister has directed RITES, a railway PSU, to quickly study and prepare a concept note, indicating ways and means for leveraging space in coaches, wagons and railway stations for advertisements, publicity and other purposes.

The minister has asked that the note be prepared at the earliest, preferably by Wednesday.

There are over 7,500 stations across the country while as many as 11,000 passenger trains and over 6,000 goods trains criss-cross the nation every day- which have huge advertising potential.

Prabhu’s predecessors, too, tried to generate funds through advertising, but could not succeed.

During Mamata Banerjee’s tenure, advertising and branding were significant focus areas as the transporter planned to raise ad revenue 10-fold in one year to Rs 1,000 crore. Even during Lalu Prasad’s tenure, the transporter tried to mop up funds through advertising.

Selling advertising space was not just restricted to signboards but also tickets, reservation charts, benches and pillars. A unique concept of 360-degree advertising solution that included on-board train branding was also devised.

The plan included providing advertising space to companies, not just on the outside but also inside, on the bed linen and on plasma screens in railway compartments.

Even a report by CAG in 2013 had pointed out that railways can make much more money by selling branding rights on stations, trains and tickets.

However, the auditor had pulled up the Railway Board for setting up high revenue projections without inputs from the ground.

For instance, by selling branding rights on the stations, trains, wagon depots, tickets, reservation forms, the railways garnered Rs 864 crore from 2008 to 2012. This was much less than the earnings target of Rs 1,000 crore set in just one year of 2010-11.

Mysore Division plans sale of commercial space to boost revenues

Division will rent out Railway land to advertisers at competitive prices

DRM Mysore Rajkumar Lalमैसूर Mysore (MYS): The Mysore division of South Western Railway is exploring sale of commercial space to advertisers to boost its revenue, the bulk of which is from freight and passenger earnings.

Rajkumar Lal, Divisional Railway Manager, told presspersons here on Wednesday that the Railways has land in prime places across the country, which will be sold to advertisers at competitive prices.

This will be a win-win situation for the Railways and the advertisers. The Railways will also use a small portion of the commercial hoardings to spread its message on hygiene, safety and security. Such land is available in Mysore, Hassan, Arsikere, Davangere, Shimoga and other major towns and cities in the Mysore division, he said.

Mr. Lal said the commercial hoardings will be modular, keeping in mind the heritage status of Mysore and to ensure that the hoardings blend with local aesthetics.

Vinyl wrapping

In addition to sale of prime space, the division will also promote vinyl wrapping of trains so that advertisers can reach out to millions of people.

“Our trains not only pass through different places in the Mysore division but also across the country. Hence the advertisers have an opportunity to reach out to millions of people at a competitive price,” he said.

The available land at level-crossing gates where vehicles stop will also be up put for sale.

Mr. Lal said the Railways were also open to a quid pro quo with the advertisers and they could sell commercial space in return for services such as landscaping the area, maintenance of premises and so on. However, there will be stringent terms and conditions for advertisers to adhere to norms and ensure that the aesthetics of the place was not vitiated, said Mr. Lal. The Railways hopes to earn Rs. 3.5 crore during the current financial year through this, he said.

Earlier, Mr. Lal launched the commercial services of Shrishti Creations, which have installed 30 LED screens at vantage points in the Mysore Railway Station. This will not only beam information pertaining to arrival, departure, late running of trains but also commercials and entertainment programmes. The Railways has received a licence fee but there are no other financial implications involved, he said.

Senior Divisional Commercial Manager K. Anil Kumar and ADRM Rakesh Gupta were present.

Mumbai Metro gets a new look with OLX

मुम्बई Mumbai: The Mumbai Metro has been one of the most anticipated launches of 2014 not only in Mumbai but also in India. Less than a month after its historical rollout, the Mumbai Metro chugged on the tracks on Sunday, June 22nd, with a different look, courtesy OLX.in, India’s marketplace for used goods.

OLXAs the three month long campaign kicks off, a part of the train’s exterior has been made to look similar to the Mumbai local train with the remaining wrapped in OLX’s brand colour of orange. The coaches wearing the look of the Mumbai local train merge into the ones that are covered in orange. The subtle message behind the branding is that of upgrading – illustrating the transition from old to new. The tagline clearly illustrated on the train is that of, ‘Purane se aage badho. OLX per becho, aur upgrade karo’.

“The Mumbai Metro has allowed the city to upgrade to a better mode of transport that will help make commuting easier in the city. The Metro was chosen as a vehicle for OLX branding because OLX too is grounded on the same principles of making lives better and simpler by helping people unclutter and earn money,” said Amarjit Batra, CEO, OLX.in.

The branding extends to the interior of the train as well with handle bars cut out in the shape of mobile phones. This branding communicates the ease of the OLX mobile app, allowing users to sell and buy on-the-go. The OLX mobile app has seen more than 12 million downloads in India across all platforms, and is currently the number one selling app on Google Play Store India.

Western Railway empanel 13 Ad Agencies for 2014-15

Western Railway has empanelled 13 advertising agencies to handle its creative and media duties for 2014-15. The account will be effective starting April 15

Mumbai मुंबई: More than 60 agencies participated in a multi-agency pitch process organised to award the account of Western Railway. The two-month long pitch process required the participating agencies to present artworks on one of the three topics related to railways. The shortlisted agencies were required to present their ideas through short films or Powerpoint presentations. The pitch ended in Mumbai last week.

For the Mumbai region, the empanelled agencies include Inter Publicity, Newfields Advertising, Prabhatam Advertising, Ratan Batra, Sai Advertisers and Snappers Advertising & Mktg. The standby agencies for the region are Adwit (India), Akar Advertising & Marketing and Concept Communication.

The agencies selected for the Ahmedabad region are Apex Advertising, Goldmine Advertising, Navnitlal & Co and Pamm Advertising & Marketing. The standby agencies are Interads Advertising and Sobhagya Advertising Service.

For the Indore region, the empanelled agencies are Deepak Advertising Agency, Headliners Advertising Services and Ventures Advertising. The standby agencies for the region include Anil Publicity Bureau and Vigilance Publicity.

Brihan Mumbai Municipal Corporation clash with Railways over Hoardings on Railway Land

Malad, Mumbai मलाड, मुम्बई: The Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation (BMC) and the Western Railway (WR) are on a collision course over advertisement hoardings after a senior BMC official on Saturday pulled down three hoardings from railway land near Malad station. The reason given by the BMC officials was that the hoardings were “distracting” motorists using the road along the western side of Malad station.

However, for the WR the hoardings that the BMC removed are part of a Rs.2.09 crore contract given to a private advertiser for putting up hoardings between Dadar and Kandivli stations, which could end up in legal complications if the BMC threatens more such action, said an official.

The immediate loss calculated by the WR due to removal of hoardings is Rs.5.99 lakh and WR officials say that if the hoardings are not put back in place quickly, the advertising firm that has got the contract can demand a refund.

The matter has reached the highest levels of both agencies with sources tell that the WR divisional railway manager Shailendra Kumar had a talk with BMC commissioner Sitaram Kunte over the BMC action. “The hoardings are on railway land and allowing the BMC to come in and take action would set a bad precedent. It could lead to revenue loss for the railways and secondly can also see our advertising contractors dragging the railways to court over contractual obligations,” said a senior railway official.

For WR’s Mumbai division, the BMC action comes at a time when it has just about managed to achieve the advertisement revenue target set for them by the railway board. In fact, almost all other divisions on the railways have failed to achieve their targets, according to railway officials.

The Rs45.09 crore WR’s Mumbai division made was a 59 per cent jump from last year when it made around Rs.30 crore.

The other reason is that for WR’s Mumbai division, advertisement revenue is a sizeable chunk of the money that flows into its coffers. Advertisement revenue of Rs.45 crore is higher than what it earned from freight, which stood at Rs.29 crore, and ticketless travel, which stood at Rs.36 crore.

TIM bags advertising rights for Mumbai Metro

Mumbai:  Times Innovative Media (TIM), a subsidiary of Bennett Coleman & Co, has bagged the advertisement rights of Mumbai Metro One for 15 years.

TIM operates its out-of-home media business under the brand, Times OOH. The contract includes various advertising options available at Mumbai Metro like station corridors, pillars, train wraps, train interiors, sponsorship opportunities and a state-of-theart digital network that will be installed by Times Innovative Media.

Sunder Hemrajani, managing director, TIM said “Mumbai Metro Line I is an important project under the public private partnership. It will offer Mumbai citizens a comfortable, reliable and efficient transportation mode. Mumbai will see metro rail system for the first time which will offer state of the art coaches, and passenger convenience systems. We are delighted to be associated with this project as the overall media partner of Mumbai Metro to offer world class media solutions to marketers for engaging with their target segments. We look forward to this long-term association.”

Times OOH first won the advertising rights at Mumbai and Delhi Airport in 2007, and went on to win the 20-year contract to manage advertising space in T3 terminal at Delhi’s Indira Gandhi International Airport in 2010 and an 11-year contract at Chhatrapati Shivaji International Airport in Mumbai in 2013.