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Essel Group’s new battery of factual entertainment channels
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Breaking First :  Essel Group’s new battery of factual entertainment channels
MUMBAI: Subhash Chandra-promoted
Essel Group has marked a new
beginning in its media journey with its
new food and lifestyle channel Living
Foodz, which will launch on 11
The new channel is being launched by
Essel’s subsidiary Living
Entertainment and not under ZEEL,
which houses the broadcast business
of the group.
ZEEL’s food channel Zee Khana
Khazana will be shut down the day
Living Foodz is launched. In a
nutshell, ZEEL will shut Zee Khana
Khazana to make way for Living
Living Entertainment in India will be
an extension of the group’s Living
network, which owns and operates a
health and lifestyle channel called Zee
Living in international markets. It
will have a separate P&L and will
operate these channels independently.
“It (Living Foodz) is a new launch. It
will not replace the old channel (Zee
Khana Khazana). The older channel
will cease to exist. It will shut down
the day this new channel comes into
being. A transition is taking place if
you visit the channel,” Zee Living
India APAC CEO Piyush Sharma
Queried about the arrangement with
ZEEL, Sharma said: “ZEEL is in a
position to offer certain kinds of
benefits in terms of audience
understanding and in terms of
cracking certain other aspects of the
business, which is where both are
He also asserted that Living
Entertainment will look to create
everything independently as far the
new channel is concerned, but it will
“benefit from wisdom which already
exists with ZEEL”.
Besides Living Foodz, the company will
launch three more channels, namely
Living Rootz, Living Homez and Living
Travelz. Zee Living, which was first
launched in the US in 2007, will also be
brought to India.
Zee Living will mark its entry in the
Indian market in the first quarter of
the next calendar year, Sharma
The other three channels will be
launched over the next 18 months.
“We are looking to launch one after
the other, maybe a channel after
about every six months,” he added.
All the channels will have a strong
international focus.
Living Foodz will have a business model
that will manifest itself across
platforms including TV, social, mobile
and activation platforms.
Sharma said that the channel will be
launched in 25 countries within one
year of its launch in India.
ZEEL MD and CEO Punit Goenka said
that Living Foodz will break-even in
the first year itself. “Living Foodz
will be profitable in the first year
itself. The kind of distribution deals
we have signed, it will be a profitable
channel from day one,” he said.
An online destination
will be launched in next two months
while the mobile app will be launched
in six months from now.
Essel Group chairman Subhash Chandra
expects the new business to rake in
revenues of Rs 1,000 crore (Rs 10
billion) annually in next four to five
“The company (Living Network) that
owns this (Zee Living) will have
roughly about Rs 80 crore (Rs 800
milion) of revenue from international
markets and in next 6-8 months Rs 50
crore (Rs 500 million) from India so it
will cross Rs 100 crore revenue in
next 12 months. I would think that
this business would be Rs 1,000 crore
in next 4-5 years annually,” he
Content plan
Living Foodz head Amit Nair said that
80–85 per cent content will be
produced inhouse while 15–20 per cent
will be acquired. The content will be
produced in high definition (HD).
Some of the shows include Food
Xpress, Chef on Wheels, Vickypedia,
The Great Indian Rasoi, Pickle Nation,
Good Food America, and Peggy’s
Kitchen Cures.
The channel has identified two time
bands, morning and evening. “We are
looking at afternoon and evening time
bands. We have broken it up into
names also. The afternoon is called
Goldmay time and evening is called
Sundown special. So Sundown special
will have lifestyle programming and
also few bits of food programme,”
Nair stated.
The channel will have celebrity chefs
and food personalities like Ranveer
Brar, Gautam Mehrishi, Rocky &
Mayur, Vicky Ratnani, Kunal Kapur
and Rakhee Vaswani through their
different shows.
Target audience
Living Foodz is targeted at Sec A 25–
44 males and females. The target
market for the channel is Mumbai and
Delhi besides metros and Tier I cities.
“It is targeted at a niche segment but
food is a universal subject. Our core
TG is Sec A 25–44 males and females.
We believe that this will be a much
bigger canvas,” he said.
Dual feed in Hindi and English
The channel will be available on pan-
India basis in dual feed, Hindi and
English. There are plans to offer
more language feeds going forward.
“We wanted to offer channels in
multiple feeds. To start off, we are
offering in Hindi and English. We are
looking at other languages but that
will take about 6–12 months,” Nair
The original content is being shot in
Hindi, but it will also be available in
English for the South markets.
Priced at Rs 30, the foodtainment
channel will be available on all direct-
to-home (DTH) platforms like Dish TV,
Tata Sky, Airtel, Videocon d2h and all
other leading digital cable networks.
The channel will be distributed by its
ZEEL’s distribution arm, Taj
According to Nair, the channel will
have an HD feed in the next year or
The company has earmarked Rs 15
crore (Rs 150 million) for marketing
and promotions. It has identified 250+
advertisers from various categories
across food and lifestyle segment.
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