Biprorshee Das

IRS Q1, 2012: Most of the top 10 English dailies register growth in AIR

The New Indian Express and The Tribune post highest growth in Q1, 2012; while Mumbai Mirror, The Hindu and Deccan Chronicle see a fall in numbers.

Among the top 10 English dailies, most dailies have posted a growth in the average issue readership (AIR) in the first quarter of IRS, 2012. The New Indian Express and The Tribune have posted the highest quarter-on-quarter growth of 41,000 and 39,000 in AIR, respectively.

The dailies that witnessed de-growth over the last quarter of 2011 (Q4, 2011) are Mumbai Mirror, The Hindu and Deccan Chronicle. While Mumbai Mirror lost 26,000 readers, AIR of The Hindu and Deccan Chronicle fell by 7,000 readers each.

IRS Q1, 2012: Most of the top 10 English dailies register growth in AIR
The rankings of the top 10 dailies have remained more or less same in the current quarter of IRS (Q1, 2012) compared to the previous quarter. The only change is The Economic Times dethroning Mumbai Mirror to claim the sixth place as the latter falls a position.

The No. 1 English daily, The Times of India (TOI) added 36,000 readers this quarter, taking its AIR in Q1, 2012 to 76.52 lakh. The daily has been on a growth spree since the last few quarters. In Q4, 2011 the newspaper added 1.49 lakh readers over the previous quarter. TOI remains the third biggest gainer in this quarter.

Far distant from the TOI is the No. 2 newspaper of the country, Hindustan Times (HT), with an AIR of 38.05 lakh. The daily added marginal 14,000 readers this quarter compared to 58,000 in Q4, 2011 over Q3, 2011.

At No. 3 stands The Hindu, which is among the three dailies to have seen a fall in readership. The AIR of the newspaper in Q1, 2012 is 22.33 lakh, a poor performance when compared to the 71,000 readers it had added in the final quarter of the previous year.

Anandabazar Patrika Group's The Telegraph has also posted a rise in AIR, an increase of 19,000 readers. With an AIR of 12.92 lakh, it continues to grow, having added 26,000 readers in the last two quarters.

Deccan Chronicle seems to have arrested its fall to a certain extent in this quarter. After having lost 60,000 readers in Q4, 2011, it has lost 7,000 readers in Q1, 2012 taking its AIR to 10.27 lakh and has stayed put at No. 5.

Ranked sixth, DNA has added 12,000 readers this quarter, with its AIR at 9.09 lakh. However, it could not replicate the growth it posted in Q4, 2011 when it added 34,000 readers over the previous quarter.

The Economic Times could well have made good some damage, adding marginal 2,000 readers in Q1, 2012 after having lost 22,000 readers in the last quarter. The business daily's AIR ending Q1, 2012 is 7.92 lakh.

The tabloid from the stable of TOI Group, Mumbai Mirror remains the biggest loser this quarter. This, after having posted a growth of 43,000 readers in the previous quarter. Since IRS Q3, 2011, Mumbai Mirror has added 17,000 readers with an AIR of 7.77 lakh.

The New Indian Express remains the lone consistent performer, witnessing another quarter of growth. After adding 44,000 readers in Q4, 2011, posting a growth of 41,000 readers again in Q1, 2012 bears testimony to this fact. Its claimed AIR stands at 6.78 lakh.

The Tribune, at No. 10, too, has registered an increase in AIR this quarter. After having lost 14,000 readers in Q4, 2011, the daily has bounced back, adding 39,000 readers this quarter taking its net addition of readers to 25,000 since Q3, 2011. The newspaper's AIR for Q1, 2012 is 6.24 lakh.

(Total readership includes any reader who has read any of the last six issues; whereas average issue readership includes only readers who have read the last issue.)

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