As Geo Super suffers, ESPN India earned Rs19 bn during World Cup -Pakistan Press Foundation (PPF)

Paksitan Press Foundtion

As Geo Super suffers, ESPN India earned Rs19 bn during World Cup

Sabir Shah

LAHORE: Acting totally opposite to their sport-loving counterparts across the border, who have very recently facilitated ESPN India to generate over Rs19 billion (10 billion Indian rupees) in revenues during the Cricket World Cup 2011, the Pakistani government continues to profoundly and irreversibly screw Geo Super up by denying it the uplinking rights despite payment of $15,000 in fees.

As the closure of Geo Super now enters its 10th day on Friday (today), its sister concern Aag TV also stands unplugged due to state’s vindictive attitude towards the country’s premier media group. Having already inflicted heavy financial losses upon Geo Super by not allowing it to telecast the 74 IPL Fourth Edition matches from India, the malicious attitude of the fifth Pakistan People’s Party regime towards the Jang Group clearly illustrates a sharp contrast to the one being displayed by the Indian government in not-so-distant past with its media outlets.

It is no secret that Geo Super had suffered losses to the tune of billions of rupees three years ago, after it was closed for 77 days between November 3, 2007 and January 21, 2008 by General Musharraf.

According to the March 30, 2011 edition of The Financial Express, an esteemed 50-year-old Indian newspaper, ESPN India is now on its way to becoming a six-channel bouquet by next year.

Quoting ESPN India’s Managing Director Aloke Malik, The Financial Express writes in its afore-quoted edition: “With the broadcast of ICC World Cup cricket, sports broadcaster ESPN India has hit the jackpot. Generating over Rs1,000 crore (Rs10 billion) of revenues including advertising and subscription revenue, ESPN is now gearing for more channels and high-quality content for Indian consumers.” This is what ESPN India’s new Managing Director Aloke Malik had told The Financial Express during his interview: “The ratings for both Indian and the non-India matches have exceeded the expectations for both us and our advertisers. But managing the logistics of bringing world class telecast to millions of viewers has been challenging.”

In his interview, published just a couple of days ahead of the 2011 Cricket World Cup final at Mumbai, Aloke Malik had revealed,” We have a team of more than 400 people on ground to cover the event. Additional 100 resources are employed for pre-post shows, Hindi language broadcast and other associated services. We have used six flyaway outside broadcast (OB) kits across the three host countries. Four of these are based in India. Within India, all four kits are travelling using chartered flights. There is complex matrix that we have employed to ensure seamless transition across cities. While each unit with 26 cameras each covered the preliminary matches, knock-out stage matches are being covered with 30 cameras. We have booked over 3,500 flights for the crew covering ICC Cricket World Cup 2011.” This is what the ESPN managing director had to day about his channel’s future plans: “We are growing the business, but not at the cost of circumventing any laid down laws.

We are determined to work with the regulator and the government laws to emphasize that sport broadcasting is a high-cost business unlike other genres like fiction, movies or music. And we will continue to do so in our engagements with the authorities. We are working towards becoming a six-channel bouquet by next year.”
Source: The News