FCB-Ulka wins Rs 20-25 crore Apollo online lottery business

By , agencyfaqs! | In | July 29, 2003
FCB-Ulka won the business in a multi-agency pitch, which involved Grey and Everest, among others

FCB-Ulka has been appointed the creative agency for the estimated Rs 20-25-crore online lottery venture of Apollo Tyres. While a number of agencies (besides FCB-Ulka) were asked to make presentations, the names of only two other agencies - Everest Integrated Communications and Grey Worldwide - could be ascertained. agencyfaqs! learns the company is yet to decide on a media agency.

Confirming the development, Sanjeev Bhargava, vice-president, FCB-Ulka, said he is not ready to share the venture's communication plans yet. He, however, added, the task for the agency is to make inroads into the paper lottery market and convert consumers onto the net version of the business. The agency will launch a multi-media campaign soon.

The formal launch of Apollo's online venture is likely to happen in a month's time. Company officials were reluctant to divulge any information on the progress of the venture. An executive familiar with the development said, the thinking and the strategy of FCB-Ulka seemed 'very beneficial' for the company. Talking about the task of the new agency, the company official said, "The task for the agency is to introduce the online lottery brand effectively to the people we would like to reach out to." Currently, the agency is working on the brand name of the venture.

Raja Kanwar, son of Apollo Tyres chairman and managing director OS Kanwar, looks after Apollo's lottery venture. According to media reports, Apollo Tyres promoters have reportedly invested around Rs 150 core in the nationwide lottery operation. However, the company refused to corroborate the investment amount saying that the figures quoted in the media were 'mostly speculative' in nature.

It is understood that the investment in the venture is likely to be routed through Apollo International, the group's investment arm for its new ventures. The group's flagship company Apollo Tyres would remain focused on the tyre business and will have no interest in the new venture.

The group's huge investment in the lottery segment is understandable. With many other players jumping onto the bandwagon, the online lottery market is bound to see big-time action in the coming months. While Playwin Infravest, a company promoted by the Essel Group, has been around for a year, Modi Enterprises plans to launch its lottery brand Sunshine India Lottery through its subsidiary, MWC Market Services. On its part, the Essar Group, through group company Essar Teleholding is rolling out Fortune lottery in West Bengal, Karnataka and Kerala, which was earlier scheduled for rollout around the third week of April 2003.

According to a memorandum submitted to the Union Government by the Federation of Lottery Ticket Associations of India, paper lotteries generate around Rs 50,000 crore annually. Industry pundits expect the online lottery business to grow between Rs 10,000-20,000 crore annually in the next three years. Much of the growth is expected from expanding the market, as only 20 per cent of Indians are estimated to have played lottery in any form.

Worldwide the lottery market has a turnover of Rs 6,00,000 crore, and in the US and the UK 90 per cent of the adult population has participated in online lotteries at some stage. © 2003 agencyfaqs!

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