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DB Corp plans to launch editions from Jammu, Jharkhand and Bihar

By Sumantha Rathore , afaqs!, New Delhi | In Media Publishing | March 29, 2010
The Hindi daily plans for a launch in Jammu and later, the other two states within a year and a half

DB Corp, the publishers of Hindi daily Dainik Bhaskar, has announced its expansion plans for Jammu, Jharkhand and Bihar. The group plans to roll out multiple editions of Dainik Bhaskar from the three states within a period of one and a half years.

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According to Prasoon Pandey, head, investor relations, DB Corp, the group will start rolling out its plans from Jammu, where it will launch two editions from Jammu and Katra; it will also launch editions in Bihar and Jharkhand.

"We have formidable plans for all the three states. Jammu will be the first state to witness those plans. Though Jammu is not a very big market, it is an important market from our point of view."

He informs that the group has 'almost' completed the purchase of land for setting up the printing facility and the office in Jammu; soon, research as well as survey will get a head start. The group, known for its aggressive strategies, will take a similar route for expansion in all these markets.

The Jammu edition will have an initial print run of about 35,000 copies. The content will have a bend towards local news coverage and the daily will take a call on supplements depending on the findings of its consumer research, which will be kick started soon.

In Jammu, Dainik Bhaskar will compete with Amar Ujala and Dainik Jagran.

According to sources close to the development, DB Corp will roll out multiple editions from Bihar including Muzaffarpur, Patna and Bhagalpur, whereas in Jharkhand, the shortlisted cities are Ranchi, Jamshedpur and Dhanbad. The first print locations will come up in the capital cities of the two states - Patna and Ranchi.

The group is also expected to have printing facilities in Ranchi, Jamshedpur and Dhanbad for its Jharkhand editions, whereas for Bihar, Bhagalpur, Muzaffarpur and Patna are the shortlisted areas.

As per R2 of IRS 2009, Dainik Bhaskar, the No. 2 publication of the country, has recorded a marginal decline in total readership for the second consecutive round. In the latest round, the Hindi daily lost about 5.9 lakh readers, while in R1, it had lost about 2.8 lakh readers. However, the daily had added about 33 lakh readers in R1 and R2, 2008, and has shown a growth in readership in both these rounds of IRS. Currently, its total readership stands at 3.3 crore.