Open Questions for The Economic Times

In recent past, I have noticed that BCCL Group (The Economics Times, The Times of India and Times Now) very aggressively brought out and followed the news stories in the interest of COMMON MAN. And no doubt they are doing excellent job in exposing corruption, irregularities and manipulations.

But while they talk about such things, are they RIGHTLY treating their own readers/ consumer or they themselves are involved in manipulating? I have few open questions for BCCL management:

1. Why they sale their readers newspapers in different mast heads – The Economic Times, The Economic Times on Saturday or The Economic Times on Sunday?

2. At no points consumer/ readers are not made aware about this (different mast heads) by BCCL. Consumer gets 1 monthly bill from their monthly subscription. Well in this BCCL can say they don’t control the vendors. But they surly need an explanation.

3. Why different price for different day of subscription.

  • Monday to Friday – Rs. 2.50 for 26 or more pages(including glazed pages).
  • Saturday – Rs. 2.50 for 16-18 pages on an average or few more pages occasionally.
  • Sunday – Rs. 9 for 12 pages.

4. What is the justification of charging 260% on Sunday when number of pages drop by more than 50%?

5. What is the regulation on unreasonable pricing of the newspaper.

6. When most of the newspaper in this country are sold from 50 paise to Rs. 2.5, what makes BCCL to charge readers unreasonably on Sundays?

By Sanjeev Singhai.


  1. Bhupesh Trivedi

    🙂 There are obvious answers to obvious questions. And, I know your questions are not obvious. So, I guess we all need this enlightenment.

  2. Rakesh Nigam

    If i represent BCCL, The answers would be as follows:
    1) BCCL Treats , newspapers as a product and sells it for making Profit( Not for Social Cause). Every product needs to go with time and innovate itself to keep it ahead of comptetiors. so as BCCL product. A newspaper is identified with its Mast Head and if we want to communicate the mega event/activity of the day with out even going to anchor story. its the Mast head which is first looked and the same moment the message is passed to the readers.
    secondly, its not only BCCL but most of other national and regional newspapers have adopted this and following it time to time.

    2) Different prising for differnt days: i guess its the contents which decides the price not the pages. otherwise magazines like Time, forbes might be charging lesser than Sarita.Femina or India Today.
    Monday to Friday ET is targeted to mass people specially traders, busienss executives and students whereas sunday issue is focussed to only top executives and talks about their leisure time spending.
    also perhapes, Top excutives get more time on sunday to read than normal days.

    3) now days no clarification for exhorbitant price esclation of 246%. Sir , can you justify the artificially hikesd up rates of Property across india though the inflation is its ingredients is insignificant.
    4) a Newspaper's prduction cost and cost of delivering at door is much higher than what it is charged to a subscriber.


    Rakesh Nigam

  3. Sanjeev S

    1. Question is not that how you price your product or whether one is in social service. Of course BCCL is not expected to do business for charity. The question is what is fair trade practice? To me it is monopolistic pricing policy they are following and charging their customer with unfair rice and exploiting consumer need unreasonable.

    2. Globally newspapers industry is known to compensate their production prices with the advertisements. And even Sunday Economics Times has better news v/s advertisement proportion than most of the newspapers daily proportion. I see average space consumed by advertisements in Sunday ET is on an average is 2 to 3 page. I think that enough to generate profits for them than why to increase cover price unreasonably.

    3. BCCL shares the distribution resources between their multiple newspapers. Are they monetizing their distribution cost properly. Also sharing of distribution resources should allow them to reduce the price.

    4. If logic of content based price is taken in account then how BCCL is able to offer CREST, another weekly newspaper by them at much lower price with much more number of pages and much less ratio of advertisements.

    5. In this country more than 90% newspaper do not have the kind of advertisements rates and ratio of per day advertisement is negligible but they survive. Look the balance sheet of BCCL or ET, see what kind of profits they are making by charging consumers unfairly.

    Everything smell rotten in BCCL. But looks like in this country like politicians, journalist and press can walk away anything and are untouchable.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.