The Resurgence of Radio in India*



Case Code : CLBS021
Publication date : 2004
Subject : Business Strategy
Industry : Radio-broadcasting
Length : 04 Pages
Price : Rs. 50

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Key words:

Advertising revenues, private players, brand name, brand awareness, advertising budgets, customer research

* This caselet is intended for use only in class discussions.
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The case examines the entry of private players in the FM radio market in India in the early 21st century. It discusses in detail the growth and decline of the radio industry in India.


 » The reasons for the entry of private players into the radio industry.
 » The various problems faced by the private players in the industry.


In July 1999, the Government of India decided to allow private players to enter the FM radio-broadcasting sector. It planned to offer ten-year licenses to private players in 40 cities across India.

These private broadcasters would be permitted to offer only music, education and entertainment-based programs, not news or current affairs programs.

Following the announcement, many companies bid for licenses to operate in various cities. The first private FM radio station Radio City began functioning in July 2001 in Bangalore, Karnataka. By October 2001, sixteen companies were issued licenses to operate private FM radio stations.

Vividh Bharati, All India Radio’s (AIR) main entertainment channel, was started in the 1960s. Commercial broadcasting was first introduced on Indian radio in 1967. In the mid-1970s, AIR started offering sponsored programs.....

Questions for Discussion:

1. Discuss the growth and decline of radio broadcasting in India and examine the reasons for the fall in the medium’s popularity during the 1990s.

2. Analyze the changes in the Indian radio market with the entry of private players into the FM sector. Critically evaluate the private players’ strategies to leverage the potential of radio. Do you suggest the new entrants might follow similar strategies to expand the market and ensure success?