Devina Joshi

Indrani Mukerjea’s INX Group on the hunt for agencies

It is learnt that the INX Group is in the early stages of a pitch process for three of its channels – News X, 9X and 9X Music – all slated for a year-end launch

The Indrani Mukerjea-promoted INX Group is on the lookout for ad agencies for three of its forthcoming flagship television channels – News X, 9X and 9X Music.

As is known, these channels will be launched under INX Media (the group’s entertainment company) and INX News – the news company, which is part-owned (26 per cent) by the entertainment company.

The INX Group will launch a total of 12 television channels. These include a Hindi general entertainment channel (9X), a music channel (9X Music) and an English news channel (News X), which will be launched by the last quarter of 2007. The remaining nine will be rolled out over the next two years. Several regional languages are also being contemplated, including in Bengali, Gujarati, Punjabi and Bhojpuri.

Indrani Mukerjea’s INX Group on the hunt for agencies
Peter Mukerjea with
Indrani Mukerjea
As of now, it is learnt that the INX Group is in the early stages of a pitch process for its three flagship channels, and some four leading agencies have already been approached with the initial briefing process. However, INX has been keeping a rather low profile on this activity. The sources further claim that the ad spends on these channels could even cross the figure of Rs 40 crore, although no formal confirmation could be obtained. Executives at the INX Group could not be contacted at the time of filing this story.

For the record, the INX Group started out as a placement consultancy in 1996. It was floated by Indrani Mukerjea, wife of ex-Star Group CEO, Peter Mukerjea. Ever since the company decided to foray into television, it has roped in some of the hottest names in the world of media: Vir Sanghvi, former editor of ‘Hindustan Times’, who will now be the CEO of INX News and the editorial head of the news channel; ex-‘Mid-Day’ editor Avirook Sen as news room head; former Star India CFO Shankar Narayan as group director, finance; former Star India EV-P, distribution, Arun Mohan as group director, distribution; and ad filmmaker Dilip Ghosh as director, content.

As most know, Peter Mukerjea himself doesn’t figure in the list right now because of the legal limitations imposed by the non-compete clause he has with his former employer, the Star Group. That runs till the end of June. But it is a strong possibility that he will come aboard as the group’s CEO once the formalities are sorted out.

Have news to share? Write to us