Launching a joint venture multimedia business in India.
Viacom created a joint venture operation in India, combining its TV brands (MTV, VH1 and Nickelodeon) with the film studio and digital media properties of its local partner, the Network 18 Group. The new venture – Viacom 18 – also planned to launch Colors, a Hindi language general entertainment channel. An internal and external communications strategy was needed to announce the joint venture to local, pan-regional and international media, along with employees of both companies.
A comprehensive media strategy was developed to ensure that top tier outlets were targeted by time zone throughout the day. This began with a press conference in Mumbai for local and international media with the CEOs of Viacom and the Network 18 Group. A teleconference was then held for reporters based in Delhi, Hong Kong and London, which was recorded for use by reporters in other regions. Subsequent phone interviews were scheduled with US-based media later in the day. Company meetings were held with both CEOs after the press conference to celebrate news of the joint venture with employees.
The launch announcement resulted in more media coverage for Viacom than any other international trip taken by the CEO to date. This included high profile coverage in business and trade press such as the Wall Street Journal, Financial Times, New York Times, Reuters and Variety, along with Indian media outlets such as Hindustan Times, Economic Times, Business Standard and CNBC India.2