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BUSINESS | News in Brief:

Star Plus Reigns in the Hindi Entertainment | Hot August Deal | Speaker at Meet | Cal Tech Seminar


Star Plus Reigns in the Hindi Entertainment

Star Plus has fortified its lead over competition in India, remaining the undisputed leader in the Hindi general entertainment space since 2000, the television channel said in a  press release.

“Audience ratings for the first half of 2008 clearly demonstrate that Star Plus has widened the lead it holds over its closest rivals,” the release said. “In the face of tough competition and channel fragmentation, Star Plus has continued to win eyeballs with fresh content that resonates with audiences across the country.”

According to the latest available data for Week 29, Star Plus delivered 348 GRPs, leading second place Zee TV by 47 percent and delivering higher ratings than its two closest competitors (Zee and Sony) put together.

With the top 10 slots across all cable and satellite channels belonging to Star Plus, the channel now leads across all weekday prime time slots from 19:00 to 23:29 with every show at each slot delivering better than the competition.  Star Plus also leads its competition in weekend prime as well as in its revamped weekday afternoon shows.

“With soaps as the main driver, Star Plus has drawn audiences with innovative content and fresh storylines,” the release said. :Bidaai, a program that was launched late last year, is today the No. 1 drama in the Hindi general entertainment space, delivering an average TVR of 5.7 in week 29.”

A number of new soaps (Kis Desh Mein Hai Meraa Dil, Raja Ki Aayegi Baraat and Hamari Devrani) launched on Star Plus in the past six months have also been garnering eyeballs with captivating stories and excellent production values.  In Week 29, Kis Desh Mein Hai Meraa Dil  has grown the slot by 70 percent since its launch.  It now ranks as the No. 2 fiction show in Hindi-speaking markets.

And in the revamped afternoon time slot, the recently launched Hamari Devraani, grew the slot by 78 percent since it launched.

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Hot August Deal

Cathay Pacific Airways offered roundtrip flights in August from Los Angeles, San Francisco or New York (JFK) to India’s top destinations including Bangalore, Mumbai, Delhi and Chennai, starting at $1,197.

To make the deal even hotter, Cathay Pacific teamed up with Taj Hotels Resorts & Palaces to offer a lucky winner a trip for 2 to India including roundtrip air transportation and hotel accommodations.

Each Indian destination in the deal offers its own beauty and intrigue. The capital city of Delhi's rich culture boasts teeming bazaars and majestic monuments.  Known as "The Garden City of India" for all of its greenery and parks, Bangalore provides picturesque scenery for travelers and is also fast emerging as a key technology hub for Asia. Mumbai, the birthplace of Indian cinema Bollywood, houses entertainment complexes and the world's largest IMAX theater.  Culturally diverse Chennai is recognized for its classical dance shows and Hindu temples.

Cathay Pacific’s deal was available for outbound travel from Sept. 1, 2008 through November 30, 2008 with a maximum stay of 30 days. Tickets were available for purchase until Aug. 31.

Headquartered in Hong Kong, Cathay Pacific Airways is one of the world's leading passenger and cargo airlines, serving more than one million passengers a month to Asia, Europe and North America. The carrier offers daily non-stop service to Hong Kong and beyond from Los Angeles, San Francisco, New York, Toronto and Vancouver; daily non-stop service between New York and Vancouver; and dedicated cargo service to Hong Kong from Atlanta, Chicago, Dallas, Los Angeles, San Francisco, New York, Toronto and Vancouver. For more information, visit: www.cathaypacific.com/us.

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Speaker at Meet

Shan Nair

Shan Nair, co-founder and president for Nair & Co, will be a key panelist at the 15th Annual Private Equity Analyst Conference  scheduled for Sept. 16-17 at the Waldorf-Astoria Hotel in New York City, according to a press release. Nair is part of the institutional panel discussion ‘Tracking The Globe’ and scheduled to speak Sept. 16.

Presented by Dow Jones, the premier conference has leading limited partners and general partners give their views on the private equity industry, what to make of business in 2005-2007, and where it is heading.

An Oxford University trained nuclear physicist, Nair has been named one of the 50 outstanding Asian Americans in Business this year. Nair has a unique blend of expertise in high technology, software and accounting. He lead Nair & Co from a single operation in Bristol, U.K. to a 300+ staff company spread over five countries and over 700 client operations globally.

He has lived in 13 countries in South East Asia, Europe and the Middle East becoming multi-lingual, and placing him in an excellent position to understand international issues. Since its inception in 1994, Nair and Co has evolved into a multi-country, one-stop solution for venture backed and public companies seeking to make their overseas expansion less risky, stress free and more strategic in the finance, tax, HR, compliance and legal arenas.

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Cal Tech Seminar

Hardly a day goes by without some mention of India in the media. Most recently there was a $600 million deal between Steven Spielberg and India’s Anil Ambani’s and earlier this year Tata Motors bought Ford Motor’s luxury brand Jaguar for $2 billion.

India's economic growth is quickly approaching that of China's at a rate of nearly 9 percent, while its population is rising at three times the rate of China's, providing extraordinary opportunity for Western business.

That opportunity was discussed in a Business with India seminar at the California Institute of Technology Aug. 25-26.

The presenter was Gunjan Bagla who has more than 25 years experience in global sourcing and marketing in India.  His electronic newsletter, called Globalization Is Great, has a circulation of over 20,000 professionals. He is the founder and principal of Amritt Inc. in Los Angeles (www.amritt.com) which advises major Western companies on doing business in India. Gunjan's new book, :Doing Business in 21st Century India,” is poised to become the definitive handbook on the subject.

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Current Issue in PDF Format:
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COVER STORY
Subversive Subprimes:
The Political Economy of the Financial Crisis

Dodgy housing loans and murky financial instruments have created an unholy financial mess, writes Ashok Bardhan.


HUMAN RIGHTS
A Sindhi’s Ordeal: The Incarceration of Safdar Sarki
Sindhi nationalist Safdar Sarki recently spoke about his 20-month ordeal in Pakistan, writes Ali Hasan Cementdaur.


NUCLEAR POLICY
False Premise: Indo-U.S. Nuclear Deal
The U.S.-India nuclear accord is testament to the failure of the Indian Department of Atomic Energy, writes M.V. Ramana.



ENTERTAINMENT
IIFA Awards 2008
A Siliconeer Exclusive Photo Essay


OTHER STORIES
EDITORIAL: Financial Meltdown
NEWS DIARY: August
SUBCONTINENT: Legal to Love?
ART: Urban Impressions
SOCIAL WORK: Helping Bangladesh
COMMUNITY: India I-Day Celebrations
PHILANTHROPY: Eastern Elegance
TRAVEL: Sequoia National Park
CULTURE: Rathyatra in SF
AUTO REVIEW: 2008 Lexus RX 400h
RECIPE: Hawaiian Crispy Fritters
FILM REVIEW: Streets of Karachi
CULTURE: Rhythm Sorcerers
TAMIL CINEMA: Kuselan
BOLLYWOOD: Guftugu
COMMUNITY: News in Briefs
BUSINESS: News Briefs
INFOTECH INDIA: Round-up
HOROSCOPE: September

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