EC Media launches e-book reader Wink in India; Fortis MF introduces Fortis Fixed Term Fund-Series 18 C; Religare MF revises exit load under Religare Short Term Plan; ICICI Pru MF declares 10% dividend under two schemes; Dhanalakshmi Bank hikes deposit rates; State Bank of Bikaner and Jaipur hikes interest rates
EC Media launches e-book reader Wink in India
EC Media International has launched e-book reader called Wink XTS. The device is a multi-functional e-reader that supports upto fifteen Indian languages. Consumers can access e-books, journals, newspapers, magazines (through subscriptions) and selected articles on the Wink e-store. EC Media also plans to launch an e-paper, Winkwire, for its users. The company has also entered retail partnership with Croma, the electronic megastore. The cost of Wink XTS is Rs11,490 and will be available from 1 September 2010. The first 10 books can be downloaded free. Later on, the user has to pay some amount to download the books. However, the user pays 60% to 70% price of the actual cost of a printed book.
Fortis MF introduces Fortis Fixed Term Fund-Series 18 C
Fortis Mutual Fund has introduced a new fund called Fortis Fixed Term Fund-Series 18 C. The fund is a three-month close ended income scheme. The new fund offer (NFO) price for the scheme is Rs10 per unit. The new issue has opened for subscription on 19th August and will close on 23 August 2010. The tenure of the scheme is three months from the date of allotment of units. The scheme offers two option-growth and dividend. The dividend option offers only dividend payout facility. The investment objective of the scheme would be to achieve growth of capital by making investments in fixed income securities maturing on or before the maturity of the scheme. The scheme would allocate upto 100% of assets in debt instruments and money market instruments with low to medium risk profile. The minimum subscription amount is Rs5,000 and in multiples of Rs10 thereafter. The fund seeks to collect a minimum subscription amount of Rs50 lakh under the scheme during the NFO period. Entry and exit load charge for the scheme will be nil.
Religare MF revises exit load under Religare Short Term Plan
Religare Mutual Fund has revised the exit load structure for Religare Short Term Plan. As per the revision, an exit load of 0.25% is payable if units are redeemed on or before 45 days from the date of allotment. No exit load is payable if units are redeemed after 45 days from the date of allotment. Religare Short Term Plan is an open ended income scheme. The investment objective to the scheme is to generate steady returns by investing in short-medium term debt and money market instruments.
ICICI Pru MF declares 10% dividend under two schemes
ICICI Prudential Mutual Fund has declared a dividend 10% (Re1 per unit on face value of Rs10) in ICICI Prudential Dynamic Plan and ICICI Prudential Growth Plan. The record date for dividends is 20 August 2010. The net asset value (NAV) under the dividend plan of the schemes as on 19 August 2010 was Rs19.4103 and Rs18.71, respectively. ICICI Prudential Dynamic Plan is an open-ended equity fund. The investment objective of the scheme is to generate capital appreciation by investing in equity and equity related securities. ICICI Prudential Growth Plan is an open-ended equity fund. The investment objective of the scheme is to generate long-term capital appreciation by investing in equity and equity related securities.
Dhanalakshmi Bank hikes deposit rates
Dhanalakshmi Bank has increased its deposit rates on all tenures upto Rs1 crore by 25-75 basis points (bps). However, the bank has left its lending rates unchanged. The bank has also launched a new term deposit scheme with a 250-day maturity. Short-term deposits with 7-14 days and 15-45 days maturity will now offer 3.5% and 4% interest, respectively, an increase of 0.75%, while those with 366-399 days and 400 days will get 7.5 to 8% returns respectively, up 0.25%. For deposits above five years and upto 10 years, the revised interest rate stands raised by 50 bps to 8.25%.
State Bank of Bikaner and Jaipur hikes interest rates
State Bank of Bikaner and Jaipur (SBBJ) has raised its lending rate by 50 basis points (bps) and deposit rates by 25-50 bps across various maturities. The lending rate of the bank has been increased from 12.25% to 12.75%. Following the increase, home, auto and corporate loans have become more expensive for existing borrowers. For fixed deposit rates, SBBJ increased the interest rate by 50 bps to 3.5% for term deposits of 15-45 days' tenor. For fixed deposits with a tenor between 181 days and less than one year, the new interest rate will be 6.25% against the existing 6%, while one-two year fixed deposits will attract an interest rate of 7.25%, an increase of 25 bps. The interest rate on term deposits of between two-three years' tenor will go up by 25 bps to 7.5%, while interest on the 5-10 years' maturity slab has been increased to 7.75%.
You can use humour in ads to tell a complex product story, but the story should not get lost in the midst of all the laughs
Makers of the expensive hatchback, Fiat Punto, have released a new TV commercial. And they have cheekily attempted to marry humour with product features, and that's always a tricky proposition. The script has to be extremely carefully written for the ad to succeed.
The TVC is set inside the basement parking lot of an official/residential building or probably a mall. Some thieves are seen trying to break into the Fiat Punto. Meanwhile the car owner arrives at the scene, and nabs one of the chors. But instead of beating him up (quite natural in the circumstances), he takes the thief out for a drive. The owner then painfully explains all the car features to the scared chap. The Italian design, the multi-jet engine, the horsepower, etc. And finally the so-called 'Blu & Me' technology which allows him to make a call through the car's speakers. And yes, it's the police control room he's dialling.
While in theory this is a neat trick… the idea of demonstrating the assorted car features using humour… the route is laced with massive road bumps. What this sort of execution does, is to run the risk of the fun part of the commercial (which is the thief) overpowering the product story itself (the complicated features). As viewers, who essentially sit down to watch television, our main aim is news or entertainment. And not advertising. And even within advertising, our focus tends to gravitate towards visuals and words that cue entertainment. Ergo, in the Fiat Punto ad, our mind remains focussed on the chor and his shenanigans, and on the owner's own game plan, but very little on the car itself. So the story totally vampires the brand.
The lesson from this commercial therefore is this: When one uses humour in ads to tell a complex product story, one has to work a hundred times on the script so that the product story doesn't get lost in the midst of all the laughs. Am afraid the Fiat Punto guys didn't account for this challenge.
Lastly, and purely as an aside, I would never steal a Fiat Punto. Not that the machine is ordinary, but despite its long list of claims, there's very little legroom space for the passengers in the rear seat. The only sort of chap who can feel comfy in this car is the short thief they feature in the ad. Maybe that's why the bugger wanted the car in the first place!
A week ago, Goldman Sachs raised its price target on gold to $1,300/ounce. Now in its ‘Perspectives from Goldman Sachs Asset Management’, the fine print says: “Shifted our stance on gold after years of being long; see gold as vulnerable to Central Bank inactivity in the face of rising deflation risk.”