afaqs!

aMap may close shop for good?

By Anindita Sarkar , afaqs!, Mumbai | In Media Publishing | August 08, 2011
Sources close to the development have informed that aMap will discontinue providing data to its clients from Saturday, August 6.

Audience Measurement & Analytics, commonly referred to as aMap, has decided to shut down its operations in India.

Sources close to the development have informed that aMap will discontinue providing data to its clients from Saturday, August 6, onwards. But, while employees within the company have been notified about the same, clients have been told that due to upgradation, the data services will be unavailable only for the next four months.

"The company does not intend to shut down. It plans to bring in a transition in its software and hardware systems, which will take a period of approximately four months. And, therefore it is closing operations for that period," informs a client of aMap who does not wish to be named.

Despite several attempts, aMap remained unavailable for any comment.

So, will the absence of aMap make a difference to the industry?

Industry experts believe that despite being a part of the industry since 2005, aMap has not been able to make much of a dent in the research market for the broadcast industry. Not many agencies subscribe to aMap, and since research requires huge investments, the company failed to monetise its services.

"Most of the agencies do not buy aMap. And, if they do, it is only to get an instantaneous feel on ratings for events such as a T20, or Obama visiting India. Therefore, the applicability of the data is very marginal," says Satyajit Sen, chief executive officer, ZenithOptimedia India.

According to Anita Nayyar, chief executive officer, MPG India and South Asia, while aMap carried a huge USP by offering data the very next day, it could not manage to match the robustness of the system.

Well, even if aMap chooses to come back with an improved measurement system, it will require much more aggression in technological support to match up to TAM, which currently stands as the currency for television audience measurement.

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