After a closely fought multi-agency pitch over the last two months, McCann Erickson has won the creative duties for Big-CBS, the joint venture between Reliance Broadcast Network Limited (part of the Anil Dhirubhai Ambani Group) and CBS Studios International.
It is learnt that Rediffusion Y&R was the other agency in the final race for the mandate.
The business will be led by Parvathy Nair, while the creative team will be headed by executive creative directors, Akshay Kapnadak and Rahul Mathew.
Aparna Pande, head, Big-CBS says, "In McCann, we found a partner who displayed great understanding of our consumers and showcased work that gives us tremendous faith in their ability to do a great job of managing the brand communication. We look forward to working with them and developing a launch campaign that sets the tone for Big-CBS in India."
Both CBS and RBNL (through its subsidiary) are shareholders in Big-CBS, each owning 50 per cent equity interest in the joint venture.
To begin with, Big-CBS will launch an English entertainment channel, Big-CBS Prime next month. This will be followed by the launch of two more English entertainment channels targeted at the youth and women. These will be called Big-CBS Spark and Big-CBS Love, respectively and will target the fast growing upwardly mobile population of India.
Big-CBS will have first access to all CBS offerings. Thus, the JV promises to offer audiences immediate access to new and current CBS programmes, such as Hawaii Five-0, The Defenders, Blue Bloods, NCIS, Survivor, CSI, 90210, America's Next Top Model and Entertainment Tonight. The channels will also have access to 70,000 hours of content from CBS' programme library, which includes properties such as Star Trek: The Next Generation, Frasier and Everybody Loves Raymond.
Besides, Big-CBS will acquire content from other production studios, and also look at producing content in India. Some of the shows, such as Entertainment Tonight, may also be adapted for Indian audiences.