IRS 2010 Q4: Kolkata prefers weeklies, Delhi prefers monthlies

By Sumantha Rathore , afaqs!, New Delhi | In Media Publishing | March 18, 2011
Among the six metros, Kolkata readers prefer to read weekly and fortnightly magazines, while monthly magazines have increased their readership in Delhi and Ahmedabad.

Magazine readership is generally on a decline, and the fate of English titles is no different. But, there are some markets where the English dailies continue to register growth.

Among the six metros (Delhi, Mumbai, Kolkata, Chennai, Bengaluru and Ahmedabad), it is in Kolkata that weekly and fortnightly magazines have increased their readership. Monthly magazines are read more in Delhi and Ahmedabad.

The all India total readership for any Weekly magazine is 73.75 lakh, and the six metros contribute 30 per cent of its total readership.

Kolkata, which contributes 18 per cent of the total readership for weekly magazines across the six metros, is one of the few cities where there has been growth in the number of people reading English magazines. The readership of any English weekly has grown at the rate of 21.35 per cent since R1 2009, registering a gain of 73,000 total readers during this period. The total readership of English weeklies in Kolkata stands at 4.15 lakh.

The weekly magazines to have recorded growth in the City of Joy are The Sportstar, Businessworld and The Telegraph in Schools. Sportstar has added 11,000 new readers while Business World has added 9,000 readers. The biggest growth has been for The Telegraph in Schools, having increased its readership by 77,000 readers. Both India Today and Outlook have lost 16,000 and 8,000 readers in the city, respectively.

In the English weekly space, Delhi and its urban environs, Bengaluru, and Greater Mumbai have recorded the maximum de-growth in this order. While Delhi has registered a de-growth of 17.89 per cent, Bengaluru has declined by 17.53 per cent. Mumbai, too, has declined by 17.42 per cent since R1 2009.

The total readership of fortnightly magazines is 58.88 lakh in Q4, 2011, having declined by 6.17 per cent since R1, 2009. The six metros contribute about 32 per cent of its total readership.

But, in Kolkata, fortnightly magazines have had some good fortune. The total readership of English fortnightly magazines is 3.22 lakh in the city, having recorded a marginal increase of 15,000 readers in the last two years. It is the only metro, among the six metros -- Delhi, Mumbai, Chennai, Kolkata, Ahmedabad and Bengaluru -- to have registered a growth of 4.89 per cent in the English fortnightly space.

Interestingly, all business dailies have increased their readership in the city. While in the weekly space, Businessworld recorded an increase in its readership, in the fortnightly space both Business Today and Business India have increased their readership by 25,000 and 12,000, respectively. Femina, too, has increased its readership in the city by 7,000 readers.

The city where English fortnightlies have recorded the maximum de-growth is Chennai -- the fortnightlies in the city have declined by 33.47 per cent. Any English fortnightly in Chennai has a total readership of 1.61 lakh, which is a decline of 81,000, since R1 2009.

The English monthly space, which claims a total readership of 1.27 crore in Q4, 2010, the six metros constitute around 24 per cent of its readership.

Interestingly, Delhi and NCR have, in the last two years, recorded a growth of 1.09 lakh in the monthly magazine's readership. Amongst the monthly magazines to have recorded growth in the city are Auto Car, General Knowledge Today, Competition Success Review, and Diamond Cricket Today.

Auto Car has added 71,000 readers, while GKT, CSR and DCT have added 39,000, 36,000 and 29,000, respectively.

Greater Mumbai has lost 4.25 lakh English monthly magazine total readers, from 10.49 lakh to 6.24 lakh - a steep fall of 40.51 per cent. Chennai, too, has lost 85,000 total readers in the English monthly magazine space.

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