Da Vinci is The First Educational HD Channel in India', Mohit Anand
There is good news for kids in the age group of 6-12 years old. Or maybe it is time for parents to relax without worrying much about what their kids are watching on TV. Already operational on Hathway in India, German TV channel 'Da Vinci Learning' recently launched its HD educational channel in 50% partnership with Raghav Bahl promoted Quintillion Media.
Da Vinci Learning, India Managing Director Mohit Anand says, “Mr. Raghav Bahl, owner of Quintillion Media is a 50 % shareholder in the business which is a huge validation for us. His faith and support gives massive weight to us.” Talking about the target audience for the channel, he expresses, “Though our core TG is 6-12 years old, it is educational channel for entire family. Actually if you see, 8 a.m. - 8 p.m. has more family content and beyond that is adult content in a way the kids will question what it means and programs also raise serious topics not suitable for kids. We are present in 100 countries across the globe in 17 different localized versions which is dubbed as well as subtitled. We have more than 20 million subscribers across the globe.”
This edutainment channel is right now available only on Hathway and is set to offer more than 680 hours of content from Da Vinci Learning Global Library. On being asked about its plans to increase its reach by being on other distribution networks, Mohit says, “Yes, discussions are going on with other key DTH platforms. Our objective is not to be a mass distributed product. We are only going to be digital product where there are setup boxes so it means it is a pay channel. To start with, the focus is top 12 cities. Though of course, the moment you tie up with DTH operators, distribution will take you far.”
India being a land to around 22 languages, Adgully.com asked him about the languages in which the content would be telecast. He expressed, “We are seriously considering language requirement as right now it is only available in English. We may consider localized content in local languages.”
The channel’s prime time hours are from 3 p.m. to 7 p.m. when kids return from school, when only fresh content would be aired. Repeats would happen at nights. He says, “We have designed this in five key slots and given them fun names. On weekends, prime time will be late mornings to early evenings. We are not extension of classroom. Having said that, we are not going to showcase entertainment content like movies etc. We are going to stick to educational brand which is about fun learning in an interactive way. There has to be lot of fun to create inspiring actions which stay for life. And that is where our expertise in programming will come into picture.”
The kids of this generation are tech savvy and are completely glued to tablets and mobiles. Hence Da Vinci has plans to use the digital platform efficiently and effectively. “Our objective is to build horizontal digital multimedia platform education content company. The TV screen is by far most important medium but not the only one. We are building complete suite of digital products which can be accessed via tablet and mobile but that will be complementary to TV channel,” Mohit elaborates. As a step in this direction Da Vinci is building its own digital application that is based on user generated content. He explains, “It is a challenge app. For example, it is about building a catapult. So the child will be shown small demo and then he/she is expected to do that and the process will be recorded and uploaded on our app by parents. Then we will be curating it and announcing winners which in a way will create engagement and also act as motivation for kids.”
The channel’s soon to be launched marketing campaign will revolve around the theme ‘Start something smarter’. The channel plans to do a number of on-ground activities to create wow moments and also to build communities to engage with its consumers directly. Mohit explains, “Our marketing campaign is primarily going to be built around on-ground activations, whether it is high consumer traffic footfall areas, or it is communities or schools. It is all about engaging directly with consumers. “
It addition, Da Vinci would have a well-rounded digital campaign; it has already started creating a buzz on social media platforms like Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, etc. Besides that, there will be television campaigns. Mediums like Outdoor and, Radio too would be used extensively. The channel’s full-fledged ad sales team and scheduling & programming team are already in place.
Disney, Hungama, Pogo and other kids’ channels are also targeting the same audience and have been very prominent channels among kids. Da Vinci, however, does not see them as competition. Mohit says, “There is no channel like us On Indian TV. No inane cartoons or movies, it is just purely fun learning. It is first of its kind. When kids are watching our channel, parents don’t have to worry about content or language used. Also for a kid, watching 30-45 minutes of content is too long. So we are designing say for a four minute program and focus on offering a nice mix of short and long duration of content.” He stresses, “While we are pay TV model, the consumer will not see increase in monthly packages and we are first kids’ educational HD channel in country. That is key differentiator. We are actually going to create new advertisers who do not advertise on kid’s channel. We think name puts a big responsibility on our shoulders as Leonardo Da Vinci is perhaps the greatest inventor, painter, and writer. So we have to stay true to it. We are not here to resort to shortcuts or diverge from core values.”