INMA 2011: Membership targets in sight, says Tariq Ansari

09 Nov,2011

By Tuhina Anand

At the concluding ceremony of INMA’s 5th South Asia Annual Conference, MXM India caught up with Tariq Ansari, INMA South Asia’s outgoing President and Managing Director, Mid-Day Multimedia Ltd. From Mr Ansari, Sanjay Gupta, Director, CEO and Editor, Jagran Prakashan Ltd takes over as President INMA South Asia.

Mr Ansari has played a key role in bringing INMA to South Asia and has held the position of President for the last two years. Talking about his task at INMA, he said, “I have been responsible for running the INMA platform in South Asia, making conferences happen and ensuring we build a significant membership.  On all these, I think we have progressed significantly.  The idea is to be of use to the industry and give back to the industry. As past president I remain on the board and I am available when required.”

Explaining why the INMA membership remained confined to just 13 organisations even though there are many players in this category, he said, “INMA had the target of going after large newspapers first. While we have only 13 newspaper organization members, there are around 500 people in this country who have access to INMA through these companies. As we come of age – and we haven’t been here for long as this is the 5th conference in South Asia – there will be conscious effort to build our membership and deliver its benefits to a larger audience.”

Mr Ansari said he hopes that INMA delegates after attending the seminars would take away some questions on what is going to be the future of their enterprise and directions it can take both in terms of strengthening the business and where future opportunities might lie.

Talking about what ails the print industry, he said, “Speaking from the perspective of an urban English newspaper, I think the readership is getting stagnant but on the other side the cost of inputs – the cost of journalism, newsprint, running the business – is driving the rate of advertising very high. So we have got a situation where readership is not growing but advertising rates are going up. That is the fundamental problem to the business to my mind.”

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