Battleground Mumbai: HT, DNA set up printing units in New Bombay

By , agencyfaqs! | In Media Publishing | May 03, 2005
Even Bennett, Coleman & Co has acquired a property in the region, say sources

Navi Mumbai or New Bombay, which lies to the north east of Mumbai, will be the printing hub for new entrants Hindustan Times and DNA.

The players are currently setting up printing units at Airoli (HT) and Mahape (DNA) in the region. And, if the grapevine is to be believed, then even Bennett, Coleman & Co (BCCL) is looking to set up an additional printing facility in the region, though there is no confirmation on this.

BCCL already has a massive printing unit in the suburb of Khandivali in Mumbai.

Clearly, the three players seem to be gearing up for the inevitable battle that is set to rage in Mumbai city.

R D Bhatnagar, head of production of DNA, however, maintains that the location of the company's printing unit at New Bombay has more to do with the availability of good infrastructure/facilities than the need to take on competition.

"There are good roads here; the water and power supply is constant. All these are required for the smooth functioning of a unit," he says.

DNA's printing unit will have three machines with the capacity to print 4.5 lakh copies to begin with. "We will subsequently upgrade the facility to have a capacity of 6 lakh copies," he says.

The machines are equipped to print a broadsheet - the familiar morning newspaper - of 24 pages. The full-fledged unit would be ready in a few months trailing HT's printing press, whose groundwork preceded DNA's. "We started work in mid-February. Currently, the unit is under construction," says Bhatnagar.

HT, incidentally, has kicked off a market survey in Mumbai on the lines of DNA's consumer contact programme, though the scale is much smaller to that of DNA's - which involves a massive 11-lakh households.

HT surveyors are giving away calendars along with letters as mementos to people who have participated in the survey, while DNA is distributing merchandise such as pens, notepads, caps and T-shirts.

As reported earlier, DNA's popular outdoor campaign (See the campaign: Phase I, Phase II, Phase III) now includes celebrities such as Dolly Thakore and Yash Chopra, who are visible in hoardings located in certain pockets of the city, primarily upmarket areas such as Peddar Road or Link Road in Santacruz (west), Mumbai.

Suresh Balakrishan, director, sales & marketing, DNA, does not rule out the possibility of the inclusion of other prominent "Mumbaikars" in the campaign. "They could also be a part of it," he says. 2005 agencyfaqs!

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